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The Cure for Sleep

Hardcover / ISBN-13: 9781474618076

Price: £16.99

ON SALE: 20th January 2022

Genre: Health & Personal Development

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‘Moving and inspiring, courageous and true: real art. Just reading her is pleasure’ Amy Liptrot, author of The Outrun

‘She is fearless in her depiction of female desire – I think many women will find themselves in these pages’ Katherine May, author of Wintering

‘Such a bold, brave, and beautiful story about birth, death, rebirth and building a larger life’ Charlie Gilmour, author of Featherhood

Just days into motherhood, a woman begins dying. Fast and without warning.

On return from near-death, Tanya Shadrick vows to stop sleepwalking through life. To take more risks, like the characters in the fairy tales she loved as a small girl, before loss and fear had her retreat into routine and daydreams.

Around the care of young children, she starts to play with the shape and scale of her days: to stray from the path, get lost in the woods, make bargains with strangers.

As she moves beyond her respectable roles as worker, wife and mother in a small town, Tanya learns what it takes – and costs – to break the spell of longing for love, approval, safety, rescue.

What's Inside

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Such a bold, brave, and beautiful story about birth, death, rebirth and building a larger life
Charlie Gilmour, author of Featherhood
I love this book. Tanya's story is moving and inspiring. Her thoughts and writing are well considered, courageous & true: real art. Just reading her is pleasure
Amy Liptrot, author of The Outrun
This is a book of women and words; homes and honesty; light and longing. A life laid bare, and given to us as reminder of what it means to choose to live. Shadrick weaves the raw beauty of the day to day with the magic of myth and fairy tale to offer us a way through the darkest woods
Kerri ní Dochartaigh, author of Thin Places
I finished this wonderful book with tears in my eyes. A book about daring to be, daring to head out, to encounter truths and to understand what place desire must have and must not have in a life. It is beautifully written, both careful and passionate, both slight and strong in its gestures like the best of art, and astonishingly, heartrendingly open. Intensity, beauty, subtlety, pain and courage - all are here.
Adam Nicolson, author of Sea Room and The Mighty Dead
In beautiful prose, Tanya Shadrick writes her own fairy tale of becoming. She is fearless in her depiction of female desire - I think many women will find themselves in these pages.
Katherine May, author of Wintering
A daring and enchantingly written blend of memoir and self-help, which urges us to consider, at any age, breaking the spell of our inherited longings for love, approval, safety and rescue, and doing what we are actually called to do with our one wild and precious life.
Caroline Sanderson, THE BOOKSELLER, Editor's Choice
Such lovely observations on familial love and motherhood - and being alive
Kit de Waal, author of My Name is Leon
A compelling personal memoir that I gulped down greedily. It's a story about struggle, class, opportunity (taken and wasted), art, sex and desire. About how to live, once you've faced down death, and how to love. The writing is direct and meaningful, open and heart-felt; Tanya is fearless in her integrity and honesty. In laying out her life, Tanya has created a book with the capacity to change yours
Jenny Landreth, author of Swell
This book is absolutely magnificent, heartfelt, beautiful. I read it compulsively
Kate Hamer, author of The Girl in the Red Coat
The Cure for Sleep is an extraordinary book, an artistic triumph in its attention to language and rhythm, but also its truth and honesty. It is full of integrity in its exploration of what it is to be a woman, a wife, a mother, but also an artist; and doesn't shy away from those difficult questions of sacrifice, so challenging for the working and desiring woman. But it is also a story of endurance, that with patience, bravery and wisdom, we can all reach new heights in our relationship with ourselves and those we love.
Lily Dunn, author of Sins of My Father
This hypnotically written debut memoir, all about claiming a bolder, more risk-taking life, reads like a fable.
Jessie Thompson, EVENING STANDARD, The best non fiction books to look out for in 2022
A sublimely written account of refusing to be defined by social constructs and embracing life-enhancing change, The Cure for Sleep is a poignant and inspiring slice of literary memoir.
WATERSTONES, Non-Fiction Books of 2022
The Cure For Sleep is a book that, from the outset, subverts expectations... The result is a memoir that reads like a fable and invites us, however late in life, to step out of the confines we have made for ourselves... Every woman will see something of herself in the clinical dissection Shadrick performs on her own history, and in the cultivation of the woman she strives to become.
Anna Galbraith, THE MAIL ON SUNDAY
This brave and beautifully written book describes the painstaking, painful process of transformation... the courageous story of a woman expanding the narrow confines of her old life for a generous, expansive, compassionate future.
Eithne Farry, DAILY MIRROR
A viscerally honest account of two lives, the second lived more fully, more fearlessly, as wife, mother, friend, feminist, risk-taker, hospice scribe, consummate writer - and completely, impressively her own person.
Rose Shepherd, SAGA
A tender but ferocious memoir... to awaken, to see the world with such freshness, to "become an explorer of the everyday and break new ground in it" - we could all do with a bit more of that.
Marianne Levy, THE I PAPER
Absolutely gorgeous. If you like lyrical, beautiful, searching non-fiction, then you'll love The Cure for Sleep
Melissa Febos, author of Girlhood
Thoughtful, poetically articulate . . . ambitious in its scope, a memoir telling her journey from rural working-class Devon to where she is today
Boudicca Fox-Leonard, THE TELEGRAPH
Absorbing . . . robust, declarative even, but there is also something disquieting in this memoir . . . for Shadrick, to be a woman, an artist and a mother still seems something not quite of this world: a fairy tale that puzzles her even though - or perhaps because - it came true
Sheena Joughin, TLS