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Book Review: The Time in Between by Nancy Tucker

Published 2nd April 2015 by Icon Books.

23315461Goodreads Synopsis: When Nancy Tucker was eight years old, her class had to write about what they wanted in life. She thought, and thought, and then, though she didn’t know why, she wrote: ‘I want to be thin.’

Over the next twelve years, she developed anorexia nervosa, was hospitalised, and finally swung the other way towards bulimia nervosa. She left school, rejoined school; went in and out of therapy; ebbed in and out of life. From the bleak reality of a body breaking down to the electric mental highs of starvation, hers has been a life held in thrall by food.

Told with remarkable insight, dark humour and acute intelligence, The Time in Between is a profound, important window into the workings of an unquiet mind – a Wasted for the 21st century.

My Review: Upon starting this book I was trying to think of two things. One; if I had actually read an autobiography before, and two; if I had read a book on a mental health issue like anorexia. I couldn’t think of anything, so The Time in Between was completely new territory to me. I was very nervous to start it though also incredibly interested to read an account of an issue that’s really prevalent today, yet never fully talked about.

Nancy Tucker developed anorexia in her early teens and The Time in Between is her story, from late childhood to adulthood. It recounts all the terrifying moments where she was admitted to hospitals, and how anorexia and bulimia affected her so dangerously over her life, as well as family and friends impacts, and growing up in general.

The Time in Between discusses some very sensitive topics, but talks about them fearlessly. There are chapters, many chapters, that hit the reader hard, but that raw emotion Tucker has conveyed makes The Time in Between all the more unforgettable.

I can’t fault Nancy’s writing: It’s stunning, and I loved how parts of the book were written in different styles: from mock guides for how to care for sufferers, laced with dark humour; to movie-style transcripts of pivotal scenes in Nancy’s life. She writes so openly, not covering up any experiences, and that makes her book feel so honest. I wish more books about similar topics were written this way: In fiction and non-fiction.

Overall, I cannot recommend The Time in Between enough; to those who want to read a powerful and moving autobiography; to those who need something to relate to; and everyone in-between. I haven’t read anything like it before, and I doubt I will ever find something similar: this book just stands out. It’s simultaneously a shining example of evocative writing, and a uniquely honest memoir about mental health, and above all, hope. It was just extraordinary!

My Rating:

five

I received a copy of The Time in Between from the publisher, in exchange for a review. In no way at all did this affect my thoughts.

BBC pointed shaded

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3 thoughts on “Book Review: The Time in Between by Nancy Tucker

  1. This book sounds like an incredibly heartfelt and fascinating insight into a topic that isn’t explored enough. “The Time in Between discusses some very sensitive topics, but talks about them fearlessly.” – this is such a fantastic thing to hear, especially considering books that explore mental health are often timid in their approach.

    Fantastic review Georgia! 🙂

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