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The web Directory of Information Materials for People Affected by Cancer is regularly updated and currently has details of over 1,900 booklets, leaflets, books and audiovisual materials for people affected by cancer. Most have been published in the last five years but we have included some older ones that are still useful.

Results: 465

Cover image of 'What you need to know about cancer'

What you need to know about cancer (September 2015)

Raintree (imprint of Capstone Global Library Limited)

Cancer can be a scary word. But the more you know about the causes, symptoms, and treatment of cancer, the better equipped you are to understand this disease. Clear, concise information breaks down the disease, the experience of having it, or relating to someone who has cancer. Be inspired by true stories from youths who have experienced cancer in their own lives and how they fought this disease. (Publisher) 

Cover image of 'Big tree is sick'

Big tree is sick (2017)

Jessica Kingsley Publishers

Snibbles and Big Tree are best friends! They have always hung out together, and Snibbles loves Big Tree very much. When Big Tree unexpectedly falls ill with woodworm, Snibbles is very upset and angry. The illness is a very bad one and Big Tree does not feel well and doesn't want to play for a long time. Poor Snibbles! He wants Big Tree to get better, but he feels as if there is nothing he can do. What can Snibbles and his friends do to help Big Tree through his treatment and recovery? This beautifully illustrated storybook describes the anger and emotion that many children encounter when a close relative or friend is diagnosed with a long-term illness, such as cancer. The story of Big Tree depicts how things are often out of your control and sets out effective strategies for dealing with these emotions. This story features loveable characters and vivid illustrations, as well as activities for children aged 5+ to complete with their parents or professionals in times of illness and loss. (Publisher)

Cover image of 'Only one of me. A love letter from mum'

Only one of me. A love letter from mum (2018)

Graffeg Limited

'There's only one mum quite like me. I wish that there were two. I'd have more time to spend And I would spend it all with you.' Most of us can't imagine having the time we spend with our children or loved ones cut short, but this is the reality being faced by mother of two Lisa Wells, who was diagnosed with terminal bowel and liver cancer in December 2017 at the age of 31. The Only One of Me project grew from Lisa's determination to leave a lasting legacy for her daughters and her desire to help other families rally against the difficulties of loss. Only One of Me is the product of Lisa's lifelong love of writing and a newfound friendship with award-winning children's author Michelle Robinson. The two collaborated on this tender and moving rhyming poem, with charming illustrations by Catalina Echeverri, which is both a love letter to Lisa's own daughters and a testament to the unwavering strength of parental love, a timeless message for families facing the challenges of bereavement. (Publisher)

Cover image of 'Enjoy every sandwich. Living each day as if it were your last'

Enjoy every sandwich. Living each day as if it were your last (2011)

Bantam Press (imprint of Transworld Publications)

As medical director of the famed Preventive Medicine Research Institute, Lee Lipsenthal helped thousands of patients struggling with disease to overcome their fears of pain and death and to embrace a more joyful way of living. In his own life, happily married and the proud father of two remarkable children, Lee was similarly committed to living his life fully and gratefully each day. The power of those beliefs were tested in July 2009, when he was diagnosed with esophageal cancer, leaving him with a 90 percent chance of dying within five years. As Lee and his wife, Kathy, navigated his diagnosis, illness, and treatment, he discovered that he did not fear death, and that even as he was facing his own mortality, he felt more fully alive than ever before. In the tradition of Don't Sweat the Small Stuff, Tuesdays with Morrie and The Last Lecture, Enjoy Every Sandwich distils everything Lee learned about how we find meaning, purpose, and peace in our lives. Told with humour and heart, this deeply inspiring book will help readers embrace their humanity, accept uncertainty, and live a life of gratitude - whether they are facing the end now or not. (Publisher)

Cover image of 'A room full of chocolate. A story of friendship, family and pot-bellied pigs'

A room full of chocolate. A story of friendship, family and pot-bellied pigs (2014)

Hodder Children's Books

Grace's fun-loving Mum has found a lump. Her north London world of sleepovers, tap dancing and playing the clarinet fall apart when she is sent to live with her grumpy old granddad on his farm in Yorkshire while her mother goes into hospital to get better. Grace misses her mother so much it hurts, and doesn't quite understand what is happening to her. And things go from bad to worse when she starts school and becomes the bullies' latest target. But Grace is no longer alone when she meets Rainbow Girl Megan and her pig, Claude - when she's with them she feels as if she can confront anything. At Easter time when Grace misses her mum the most, she knows she must find a way to get to London. With Megan's help, she hatches a plan to run away that involves Claude, chocolate Easter eggs and a risky ID swap. But it's all worth it if it means that she finally gets to see her mum ...(Publisher)

Cover image of 'Getting on with cancer'

Getting on with cancer (2002)

Books Beyond Words

"Books beyond words" is a series of picture books that has been developed for people who have difficulty reading and who can understand pictures better than words, and to enable discussion about difficult topics. Supporting text and guidelines are also provided for carers, supporters and professionals. When Veronica's doctor told her she had cancer, she was confused and terrified. Then he told her some cancers can be cured. `Getting on with cancer' tells the story of Veronica, a woman with Down's Syndrome, who has cancer. She has surgery and also radiotherapy and chemotherapy. The book deals honestly with the unpleasant side of treatment. It is designed to be used as a counselling tool by anyone working with people who have both learning disabilities and cancer. It will also be valuable for other client groups, for example, people with chronic mental health problems. The book ends on a positive note. Included in the book is Veronica Donaghey's story 'It's not all bad news', written in her own words. There are also guidelines for carers/supporters and for healthcare professionals, and information on relevant resources and helpful organisations. (Publisher)

Cover image of 'Water bugs and dragonflies'

Water bugs and dragonflies (1997)

The Pilgrim Press

Talking to children about death can be hard, but it doesn't need to be. Water Bugs and Dragonflies: Explaining Death to Young Children can help you to answer their questions. Doris Stickney tells the story of a small colony of water bugs living happily below the surface of a very quiet pond. Every so often one of them climbs up a lily stalk and disappears from sight, never to return. Those left behind are faced with the mystery of what has become of them. The answer to death lies in the questioning. Stickney invites you and your children into the question. (Publisher)

Cover image of 'Pelvic radiotherapy in women. Managing side effects during treatment'

Pelvic radiotherapy in women. Managing side effects during treatment (September 2018)

Macmillan Cancer Support

This booklet is for women who are having, or are going to have, radiotherapy to the pelvic area. The pelvic area is the lower part of the tummy (abdomen), between the hips. The booklet explains: side effects that may happen during, or shortly after, pelvic radiotherapy; how side effects can be controlled or reduced; what you can do to help yourself.

Cover image of 'Glioblastoma. A guide for patients and loved ones. Your guide to glioblastoma and anaplastic astrocytoma brain tumours'

Glioblastoma. A guide for patients and loved ones. Your guide to glioblastoma and anaplastic astrocytoma brain tumours (2017)

ngo media

Glioblastoma and anaplastic astrocytoma are two of the most common form of brain tumours in adults. Too often they can be life changing, even life limiting for patients, wreaking devastation on their families. This readable, moving and non-technical guide is your comprehensive patient focused guide to these obstinate brain cancers. It covers everything from getting an accurate diagnosis, to dealing with the physical, mental and emotional impact of the disease. From treatment options and how to cope with their side effects, to newly developing techniques and future research. This book presents an honest and realistic picture, with a personal approach. Featuring dozens of personal testimonies from those with these high-grade brain tumours and their loved ones, the book offers information, reassurance and support on these, the most complex of brain tumours. (Publisher)

Cover image of 'Remembering hare. The great race'

Remembering hare. The great race (2014)

Southgate Publishers

This beautifully illustrated story, written for children aged 5 - 9 years, is about coming to terms with the death of someone special. Featuring the same much-loved characters from "Saying goodbye to hare", Rabbit and Buzzard reflect together on the ups and downs, feelings and experiences of the first year following the death of their dear friend Hare, as they watch the "Great Race". This lovely book is about treasuring memories, creating a legacy and celebrating the life of the person who has died.  Inspired by the author's experience of supporting her young children following the death of their father, this book delivers a hopeful, supportive message for children and adults alike. There are guidance notes included for the adult who is supporting the child; these are aimed at helping further exploration of the questions and feelings children have at this difficult time. (Publisher)

Cover image of 'Davey’s really magic carpet'

Davey’s really magic carpet (2016)

Blue Canoe Books

A beautifully illustrated children's book which takes the reader, aged 4 upwards, on an adventure with Davey and his Really Magic Carpet. Davey's magic carpet was a gift from his daddy as he died, and each thread is made from a memory they had together. It is an uplifting story about making memories as a family, that is valuable and engaging for any child, but especially those preparing for loss or needing support if bereaved. It is soft back, 21cmx21cm and includes 3 activity pages. (Publisher) 

Cover image of 'What does super Jonny do when mum gets sick? [Spanish]'

What does super Jonny do when mum gets sick? [Spanish] (2016)

Books For Caring Kids

Jonny is a little superhero with a BIG problem. His Mum is sick. How can he help? Join Super Jonny and Bear, as they go to the hospital to investigate. LEARN who the staff working in the hospital are and what they do. DISCOVER Jonny's secret weapon. Super Jonny is recommended by teachers for teachers. The question page links to the English and New Zealand national curriculums. These questions teach the children how to help the sick. Some people need regular hospital care to manage their disease. These people have their own page entitled: Preparing for a hospital admission: 5 tips for chronically ill moms. This ensures that any mother who is going into hospital, has some supplies when her children visit. This list of simple suggestions could also be filled by any adult wanting to help a Mom who is suddenly sick. With its big bold professionally drawn illustrations, Super Jonny is a valuable resource for your family, school or medical centre. (Publisher).

Cover image of 'Going on the turn. A memoir'

Going on the turn. A memoir (2017)

Weidenfeld and Nicholson

Danny Baker's third volume of memoirs barrels along at the same cracking pace as its predecessors, the bestselling Going to Sea in a Sieve (the inspiration for the major TV series Cradle to Grave and subsequent nationwide tour) and Going off Alarming. With his trademark exuberance, he recalls the years which included six years' involvement in the massive TV hit TFI Friday ('piling it up with hellzapoppin' ideas') - during which time he stalked John Cleese in New York, entertained David Bowie and Paul McCartney, bizarrely reunites with Sir Michael Caine, gets befriended by Peter O'Toole and becomes a member of Led Zeppelin for 35 minutes. However, the tales are not reliant on celebrity alone, and the book comes packed with the usual quota of Baker family jewels, including Spud's attitude to doctors, Danny's trip to Amsterdam to get stoned for the first time (he fails), getting caught up in football rioting, and the now infamous 'kaboom' of an outburst following his despatch from BBC London. And then there's the cancer. Spoiler alert: this is the one in which he almost dies. Further spoiler alert: he doesn't. (Publisher)

Cover image of 'Understanding cancer'

Understanding cancer (2018)

Booklife Publishing

Cancer is a group of diseases in which abnormal cells divide and spread. There are many different kinds of cancer, and different forms of treatment. Cancer is very scary, and can be very difficult to handle physically, emotionally, and mentally. Learning about how cancer affects the body and how it can be treated can help readers who know someone with cancer, or who have cancer themselves. This book can help readers understand complex medical terms and processes through straightforward text. Full-color photographs and fact boxes highlight important information. (Publisher)

Cover image of 'The Boobies (and that nasty thing called cancer)'

The Boobies (and that nasty thing called cancer) (2018)

A Spark In The Sand

Ceara Hayden's book The Boobies is a lighthearted and informative story about breast cancer. Her quirky and witty rhymes convey this serious disease in a way that is accessible to young adults and grown-ups alike. Based on her own experience of her mother's diagnosis, Ceara's story brings warmth, hope (and a little humour) for those suffering or watching a loved one suffer from this devastating illness. All profits from this book will be donated to the breast cancer awareness charity CoppaFeel. (Publisher)

Cover image of 'The magical wood'

The magical wood (2018)

Lemon Drop Books

This is a story about loss, friendship and hope. The Magical Wood is set in a beautiful wood with a river wandering through. One cold and stormy day, the wind blew a terrible gale. The next day the tree family woke to find that Strongest Tree had fallen to the woodland floor and had sadly died. How would the tree family survive the seasons without the strength of Strongest Tree? Throughout each season the tree family are visited by a new animal, offering advice and support to the trees. (Publisher)

Cover image of 'Thinking out loud. Love, grief and being mum and dad'

Thinking out loud. Love, grief and being mum and dad (2017)

Hodder & Stoughton

In 2015, former England football star Rio Ferdinand suddenly and tragically lost his wife and soulmate Rebecca, aged 34, to cancer. It was a profound shock and Rio found himself struggling to cope not just with the pain of his grief, but also with his new role as both mum and dad to their three young children. Rio's BBC1 documentary, Being Mum and Dad, touched everyone who watched it and won huge praise for the honesty and bravery he showed in talking about his emotions and experiences. His book now shares the story of meeting, marrying and losing Rebecca, his own and the family's grief - as well as the advice and support that get him through each day as they strive to piece themselves back together. Thinking Out Loud is written in the hope that he can inspire others struggling with loss and grief to find the help they need through this most difficult of times. (Publisher)

Cover image of 'The holistic guide for cancer survivors'

The holistic guide for cancer survivors (2016)

Sheldon Press

While cancer causes more than one in four deaths in the UK, many cancers are increasingly chronic diseases, and holistic management is common. Up to a half of all cancer patients admit to visiting CAM providers; more use complementary therapies. Holistic health isn't a quick fix, but many CAMs are now established, respected and effective parts of the treatment journey in cancer, and indeed many cancer drugs come from plants. This book is a balanced, informative look at how holistic methods may help in the cancer journey. Topics include: Understanding cancer; Why does cancer arise; Common symptoms; How holistic methods may help; Diet; CAM treatments such as acupressure, acupuncture and moxibustion, art therapy, aromatherapy; An anti-cancer lifestyle; Spirituality and healing; How to ensure treatment is safe - never trust anyone who claims to cure cancer. (Publisher)

Cover image of 'Saying goodbye to hare'

Saying goodbye to hare (2012)

Southgate Publishers

This is an uplifting story written for children aged 5-9 years about death and dying. Beautifully illustrated, Saying Goodbye to Hare is full of honesty and warmth. As young Rabbit witnesses the life, illness and death of his dear friend Hare, the story explores some of the feelings and questions children have at this time. Inspired by the author's own personal experience of supporting her young children through the illness and death of their father, the story is sensitively written to give a positive, thoughtful message about death and dying. The book includes guidance notes for the adult supporting the child. (Publisher)

Cover image of 'I love you daddy'

I love you daddy (2014)

Millgate House Publishers

A poignant and true story written from a child's perspective, I Love You Daddy is sensitive and insightful and helps to support the emotional needs of children faced with the pain of losing a loved one to cancer. (Publisher)

Cover image of 'Saying goodbye. Helping families deal with pre- and post-bereavement'

Saying goodbye. Helping families deal with pre- and post-bereavement (2011)

Southgate Publishers Ltd

Offers in-depth advice and guidance for adults about how to help children and young people deal with an expected death in the family. The book includes detailed sections on telling the children, questions children may ask, ways to encourage communication between adults and children, creating lasting memories together and dealing with death. The book will be of great help to adults going through this most difficult and painful time, It will also be a useful resource for professionals working with pre- and post-bereaved families. (Publisher)

Cover image of 'The paper dolls'

The paper dolls (2013)

Macmillan Children’s Books

A string of paper dolls goes on a fantastical adventure through the house and out into the garden. They soon escape the clutches of the toy dinosaur and the snapping jaws of the oven-glove crocodile, but then a very real pair of scissors threatens. The Paper Dolls is a stunning, rhythmical story of childhood, memory and the power of imagination from the author of The Gruffalo, and illustrating talent Rebecca Cobb. (Publisher)

Cover image of 'Who will cut the grass?'

Who will cut the grass? (2013)

Cancer Focus Northern Ireland

This illustrated book for young children aims to help them understand and prepare for the death of a parent or significant adult.

Cover image of 'All that followed. A story of cancer, kids and the fear of leaving too soon'

All that followed. A story of cancer, kids and the fear of leaving too soon (2018)

Mirror Books

With four children (three of them triplets!) and a relationship break-up to contend with, some things get a little lost in the mix. Like symptoms. Emma Campbell bravely and honestly offers heartfelt thoughts on what happens when cancer becomes an unwelcome guest at an already crowded party. She shares her own terror and pain, mixed with the heartwarming and unexpected. The extraordinary kindness of people and the gritty detail of battling a life-threatening illness, all while being a single mum to four children. She opens up about her angels and demons, losing and then finding love again, a constant fear of death mixed with the joy and relief of living, the anxiety of cancer returning - then facing it when it does. This book has grown from Emma's blog Me And My Four. Eager to share with her followers in more detail, the secrets, the fears, the triumphs and the terrors that she faces each day, in a life as unpredictable as your own... (Publisher)

Cover image of 'What does super Jonny do when mum gets sick?'

What does super Jonny do when mum gets sick? (2014)

Books For Caring Kids

Jonny is a little superhero with a BIG problem. His Mum is sick. How can he help? Join Super Jonny and Bear, as they go to the hospital to investigate. LEARN who the staff working in the hospital are and what they do. DISCOVER Jonny's secret weapon. Super Jonny is recommended by teachers for teachers. The question page links to the English and New Zealand national curriculums. These questions teach the children how to help the sick. Some people need regular hospital care to manage their disease. These people have their own page entitled: Preparing for a hospital admission: 5 tips for chronically ill moms. This ensures that any mother who is going into hospital, has some supplies when her children visit. This list of simple suggestions could also be filled by any adult wanting to help a Mom who is suddenly sick. With its big bold professionally drawn illustrations, Super Jonny is a valuable resource for your family, school or medical centre. (Publisher).

Cover image of 'A monster calls'

A monster calls (2012)

Walker Books

The monster showed up after midnight. As they do. But it isn't the monster Conor's been expecting. He’s been expecting the one from his nightmare, the one he’s had nearly every night since his mother started her treatments, the one with the darkness and the wind and the screaming. This monster is something different. Something ancient, something wild. And it wants the most dangerous thing of all from Conor. It wants the truth. Patrick Ness spins a tale from the final idea of Siobhan Dowd, whose premature death from cancer prevented her from writing it herself. Darkly mischievous and painfully funny, 'A Monster Calls' is an extraordinarily moving novel of coming to terms with loss from two of our finest writers for young adults. (Publisher)

Cover image of 'All the time we thought we had'

All the time we thought we had (2018)

Polygon (Birlinn Imprint)

How do you start a new life when the person you love is about to die? At the age of thirty-six, Gordon Darroch's wife was diagnosed with breast cancer. It was a devastating blow just as he, and their two children with autism, were preparing to move to her native Holland. Eighteen months later, as their plans seemed to be back on course, came the second blow: Magteld was terminally ill and possibly had only a few months to live. As her health rapidly deteriorated, they became caught up in a race against time to get a dying mother home and give their children a future in a country they hardly knew. How could they build a new life in the midst of grief and loss? How would their two sons adjust to such enormous changes? And what would remain of Magteld once she was gone? All the Time We Thought We Had is a story of love and loss and a meditation on grief and memory. It's about how events shape our lives and how we cope with them. And it raises important questions about what we value in life and the legacies we leave behind. (Publisher)

Cover image of 'The copper tree'

The copper tree (2012)

Strauss House Productions

When Olivia's teacher, Miss Evans, dies, the children at her school are encouraged to think of everything that reminds them of her. Written with touching sensitivity and sprinkled with light-hearted moments, 'The Copper Tree' is about love and legacy and will help children understand that, while sadness is an inevitable part of grief, death is not the end... for what we leave behind can be everlasting. (Publisher)

Cover image of 'The memory tree'

The memory tree (2014)

Orchard Books

Fox has lived a long and happy life in the forest. One day, he lies down in his favourite clearing, takes a deep breath, and falls asleep for ever. Before long, Fox's friends begin to gather in the clearing. One by one, they tell stories of the special moments that they shared with Fox. And, as they share their memories, a tree begins to grow, becoming bigger and stronger, sheltering and protecting all the animals in the forest, just as Fox did when he was alive. This gentle and comforting tale celebrates life and the memories that are left behind when a loved one dies. (Publisher)

Cover image of 'Signs and symptoms of cancer [Bengali]'

Signs and symptoms of cancer [Bengali] (March 2017)

Macmillan Cancer Support

This z-card gives the signs and symptoms of the main cancers for men and women and advice on cancer prevention for anyone worried about their cancer risk.

Cover image of 'Signs and symptoms of cancer [Polish]'

Signs and symptoms of cancer [Polish] (March 2017)

Macmillan Cancer Support

This z-card gives the signs and symptoms of the main cancers for men and women and advice on cancer prevention for anyone worried about their cancer risk.

Cover image of 'Signs and symptoms of cancer [Nepali]'

Signs and symptoms of cancer [Nepali] (March 2017)

Macmillan Cancer Support

This z-card gives the signs and symptoms of the main cancers for men and women and advice on cancer prevention for anyone worried about their cancer risk.

Cover image of 'Because... someone I love has cancer: Kids' activity book'

Because... someone I love has cancer: Kids' activity book (2003)

American Cancer Society

Designed for children between the ages of 6 and 12 who have a loved one with cancer, this activity book allows children to work through and express unfamiliar feelings in well-paced activities that progressively teach coping skills. Includes five crayons.  

Cover image of 'Telling your child you have cancer'

Telling your child you have cancer (2017)

FruitFly Collective

This booklet is illustrated with cartoons to help parents explain cancer to their child(ren). It has a glossary of medical terms, questions that children might ask, and details of other resources.

Cover image of 'I miss you. A first look at death'

I miss you. A first look at death (2009)

Wayland Books

This reassuring picture book explores the difficult issue of death for young children. Children's feelings and questions about this sensitive subject are looked at in a simple but realistic way. This book helps them to understand their loss and come to terms with it. Written by a trained psychotherapist, journalist and parent, and illustrated by an experienced children's book artist, this is part of an acclaimed and successful series of picture-book non-fiction for Early Years. Books in the series give advice and promote interaction between children, parents, and teachers on a wide variety of personal, social and emotional issues. They are excellent tools for teachers to use during classroom discussions. (Publisher)

Cover image of 'Remembering...'

Remembering... (2009)

Child Bereavement Charity

A memory/keepsake book for bereaved children for when someone special in their life has died, illustrated with watercolours by Daniel Postgate and written by Dianne Leutner. "Remembering" is a beautiful memory/keepsake book for children when someone special in their life has died. The outstanding illustrations by award-winning Daniel Postgate are light-hearted yet thoughtful. It's part book, part scrapbook, and was created to hellp keep a child's memories alive after the loss of someone special and to give children a place to return to whenever they wish. For ages 10 and under. This book received a 'Highly Commended' BMA Patient Information award. (Publisher)

Cover image of 'The cancer that wouldn't go away: a story for kids about metastatic cancer'

The cancer that wouldn't go away: a story for kids about metastatic cancer (2013)

Lulu.com

The cancer that wouldn't go away is a groundbreaking book, written especially for the child whose parent is living with metastatic cancer. This sensitively written tale uses a gentle, yet realistic approach to help children ages 4-8 face the unique uncertainties of life with incurable cancer. Unlike stories about early-stage cancer, after which the parent is cured and life goes back to normal, for the family in this story, life has irrevocably changed. The future is uncertain. But love and laughter remain constant, as they take life one day at a time. Includes a comprehensive guide ("How to use this book") for parents and professionals, written by child trauma psychologist. (Publisher)

Cover image of 'Artichoke hearts'

Artichoke hearts (2011)

Macmillan Children's Books

Twelve-year-old Mira comes from a chaotic, artistic and outspoken family where it’s not always easy to be heard. As her beloved Nana Josie's health declines, Mira begins to discover the secrets of those around her, and also starts to keep some of her own. She is drawn to mysterious Jide, a boy who is clearly hiding a troubled past and has grown hardened layers - like those of an artichoke - around his heart. As Mira is experiencing grief for the first time, she is also discovering the wondrous and often mystical world around her. (Publisher)

Cover image of 'Tommy v cancer.  One man's battle against the big C'

Tommy v cancer. One man's battle against the big C (2017)

Independently published

On Thursday, 10th of March 2016, I returned home from a hospital appointment and broke the news to my wife and children. I had throat cancer. Stage four. Inoperable. Desperately needing some way to make sense of my situation, I set up a blog to chart my battle against the disease. I hoped it would allow me to understand more about this thing inside me, and what I would have to go through in terms of treatment to try to eradicate it. I also thought it might help other people who found themselves in similar circumstances. I made a promise to my readers to be open and honest all the way. I wouldn't hold anything back, no matter how unpleasant. Now, over a year later, I have adapted that blog into this book. It details my journey from when I first realised that something was wrong, through the intense courses of chemotherapy and radiotherapy, to where I am today. To say that journey was difficult is a vast understatement. The side effects of my treatment utterly kicked my arse, causing me to lose over half my bodyweight and fall seriously ill with double pneumonia and sepsis. Totally unresponsive, I was rushed into intensive care where the doctors told my family that, if they couldn't stabilise me, I had approximately two hours left to live. One option was to put me into a medically induced coma, although the chances were high that I would never emerge from it. Imagine someone telling you that about your loved one as they lie there, unconscious and struggling to breathe. Cancer is an invader that affects more than just the patient. Everyone suffers - spouses, siblings, children, extended family, friends. Even, as I was to discover, strangers from all over the world. I was overwhelmed with the love and kindness of almost everyone who contacted me, but I also suffered terrible abuse at the hands of online trolls. I should warn you that parts of this book do not make for easy reading. I kept my promise to be honest, and wrote many of the blog entries when I was depressed and scared, certain I wouldn't live to see another dawn. I convinced myself that I would quickly perish, leaving my wife and two sons - then aged 9 and 17 - alone, and with no-one to protect them or provide for them. I wouldn't get to see them grow up, develop into young men, and eventually have children of their own. The prospect terrified me. For those of you who followed my blog and read the posts as I uploaded them, you haven't seen everything. This book c

Cover image of 'Connecting with cancer. Living with and beyond cancer'

Connecting with cancer. Living with and beyond cancer (2017)

Melrose Books

Surgeon: You’ve got cancer, but we can keep you going for a few months, or maybe a few years. Me: Okay, which is it, months or years? Surgeon: Silence. Me: Will it kill me? Surgeon: Yes, it probably will. That was when my head went into overdrive and I lost the plot. Hearing that you have cancer is a life-changing moment. Connecting with Cancer tells the stories of different people affected by different cancers: how their lives were changed, how they found an inner strength, how they found hope and a life after cancer. Each story is personal and sometimes very intimate; in the pages of this book, you will learn what cancer feels like. (Publisher)

Cover image of 'Nowhere hair'

Nowhere hair (2015)

Thousand Words Press

The little girl in Nowhere Hair knows two things: Her mom's hair is not on her head anymore, so therefore it must be somewhere around the house. After searching the obvious places, the story reveals that her mother, although going through cancer treatment, is still silly, attentive, happy and yes, sometimes very tired and cranky. She learns that she didn't cause the cancer, can't catch it, and that Mommy still is very much up for the job of mothering. The book, written in rhyme, explains hats, scarves, wigs, going bald in public, and the idea of being nice to people who may look a little different than you. It ends with the idea that what is inside of us is far more important than how we look on the outside. For any parent or grandparent, Nowhere Hair offers a comfortable platform to explain something that is inherently very difficult. (Publisher)

Cover image of 'A new kind of normal'

A new kind of normal (2018)

Self-published

They say there’s a book in all of us, but I doubt I would ever have written one had it not have been for my diagnosis of breast cancer in 2011. ‘A New Kind of Normal' is the story of my life up to and moving on from that moment. Growing up in the 60's, working through the 70's and 80's, juggling a career in TV and radio while bringing up three children and surviving two divorces. From the moment I knew what a bra was, I’d wanted breasts: I even crafted a pair of blue plasticine boobs for myself, as nature made me wait until I was 15 for breasts of my own! Through cancer I lost them both, and with the chemotherapy; all my hair, my fingernails, and more worryingly, a sense of whom I was. My hair grew back, as did my fingernails, but I still struggled with my identity. What I’ve written isn't a diary, nor a self-help guide, and it's not just about cancer. I’ve taken a really good look at the little girl I was and the woman I grew into, and why I went to such lengths to try and claw back some of what cancer had taken from me - it's not everyone's way I appreciate, and it’s been an interesting exercise trying to ascertain why it was mine! I’ve been honest, open, and meticulous when it comes to detail, as I firmly believe that if you take away the mystery, you can take away some of the fear. But there’s a lot to laugh about here too, as luckily I’ve always been able to see the funny side of a situation, preferring that to the occasional overwhelming despair I felt. In this book I've tried to move the disease away from the medical professionals and the hospitals, and to bring it into the day to day, because that's where it sits. Over the last seven years I’ve come to realise that the ripple effect of cancer is far reaching, affecting not just those of us living with it but everyone around us. 'A New Kind of Normal' gives an insight into my relationship with my then partner, now husband; my children and their reaction to my illness, my family and friends, my work colleagues, people who wrote to me, and the professionals who cared for me; everybody reacts differently. Breast cancer assaults your femininity - the treatment is tough and the surgery brutal.  It isn't easy, but it is possible, and I'd like to feel this book may be a source of comfort to anyone who's life is touched by breast cancer; maybe even help them to find their 'New Kind of Normal'. There are many things in life we may have to give up on, but hope is not one of them. (P

Cover image of 'Who will do my hair?'

Who will do my hair? (2010)

Ulster Cancer Foundation

This illustrated book for young children aims to help them understand and prepare for the death of a parent or significant adult.

Cover image of 'Fast facts: Ovarian cancer'

Fast facts: Ovarian cancer (2017)

Health Press

In the last few years there has been a revolutionary increase in our knowledge of ovarian cancer management, from detection and genetics to surgery and novel targeted treatment approaches. This means that when it comes to detecting, diagnosing and treating women who have, or are suspected of having, ovarian cancer, there are significant opportunities for the well-informed healthcare professional to intervene in a meaningful way. This resource offers a comprehensive overview of all levels of care, summarizing the most recent advances and putting them in a clinically meaningful context. It answers important questions such as when to operate and when to treat with various modalities, both conventional and novel. We have striven to capture the key knowledge that a busy healthcare professional caring for patients with ovarian cancer needs, in a refreshingly readable concise format. (Publisher)

Cover image of 'Life on the refrigerator door'

Life on the refrigerator door (2008)

Macmillan Children's Books

Mom, I went to the store. See inside the fridge. I watered the plants. I cleaned out Peter's cage. I tidied the sitting room. And the kitchen. And I did the washing up. I'm going to bed. Your live-in servant, Claire. 'Life on the Refrigerator Door' is told exclusively through notes exchanged by Claire and her mother, Elizabeth, during the course of a life-altering year. Their story builds to an emotional crescendo when Elizabeth is diagnosed with breast cancer. Stunningly sad but ultimately uplifting, this is a clever, moving, and original portrait of the relationship between a daughter and mother. It is about how we live our lives constantly rushing, and never making time for those we love. It is also an elegy to how much can be said in so few words, if only we made the time to say them. (Publisher)

Cover image of 'Dear cancer. A diary of hope to help you through'

Dear cancer. A diary of hope to help you through (2018)

Trapeze (Orion)

Renowned as a much-loved and highly respected BBC journalist, Victoria Derbyshire has spent 20 years finding the human story behind the headlines. In 2015 she found herself at the heart of the news, with a devastating breast cancer diagnosis. With honesty and openness, she decided to live out her treatment and recovery in the spotlight in a series of video diaries that encouraged thousands to seek diagnosis and help. Victoria has kept a diary since she was nine years old and in this book she shares her day to day experiences of life following her diagnosis and coming to terms with a future that wasn't planned. From the moment she woke up to find her right breast had collapsed, to telling her partner and children, through to mastectomy and chemotherapy. From wearing a wig to work and hiding it from her colleagues, to the relief and joy of finishing treatment before immediately flying to Glasgow to present a debate on the European Referendum. y sharing her story, she became the person that mums, daughters, sisters, husbands, boyfriends and family members contacted to thank as they tried to find ways to cope with their own and their loved ones' prognosis, and needed to know that they were not alone. (Publisher)

Cover image of 'All to live for. Fighting cancer. Finding hope.'

All to live for. Fighting cancer. Finding hope. (2017)

Headline

In 2005 Emma Hannigan was 32, happily married to her long-time love, with two young children. Her world was shattered when she discovered that she had the rare gene BRCA1, meaning a 50% chance of developing ovarian cancer and an 85% chance of breast cancer. To reduce the risk, Emma had a double mastectomy and both ovaries removed, but in 2007 received the news that cancer had struck anyway. Twelve years later, Emma is battling cancer for the tenth time. With warmth and wisdom, she shares her journey and her advice on everything from skincare and hair loss to how to keep a sense of humour through it all. All to Live For is a story of one woman's determination not to let cancer win; a story of strength and inspiration, hope and love. And of never giving up. (Publisher)

Cover image of 'Well. A doctor's journey through fear to freedom'

Well. A doctor's journey through fear to freedom (2017)

Saraband

When Dr Mary Gunn was diagnosed with cancer, her first reaction was fear, and to fight the disease aggressively for the sake of not only herself but her young children and husband. But when it came back – and turned out to be incurable – she knew that she couldn’t live the rest of her life in fear. Mary embraced a new approach to life: to accept all the joy and sorrow, safety and danger, certainty and unpredictability… in essence, to live freely. In our uncertain times, when it’s difficult not to feel the fear, Dr Mary Gunn’s remarkable memoir offers mindfulness tools for resilience, and shows how we can all use acceptance, compassion and love to live courageously, magnificently. Backed up by many years of experience as both a doctor and a patient, her story will inspire you to let go of fear, love life and live well. (Publisher)

Cover image of 'Eek! My mummy has breast cancer'

Eek! My mummy has breast cancer (2013)

Club Books

When my mum was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2012 it literally rocked my world, the world of my family, and the world of our friends. I searched everywhere looking for information about breast cancer that teenagers could understand and relate to - I couldn't find any. I decided if I couldn't find any books about breast cancer that I, as a teenager, could understand, I would have to write my own book from my experience on dealing with a loved one who has been diagnosed with cancer and in the hope others could find useful that I struggled to find originally. This is what I put together and for all teenagers and young people out there I hope you find this book useful, helpful and most of all: comforting. Emma Sutherland. (Publisher)

Cover image of 'Grief works. Stories of life, death and surviving'

Grief works. Stories of life, death and surviving (2017)

Penguin Life

Death affects us all. Yet it is still the last taboo in our society, and grief is still profoundly misunderstood... In Grief Works we hear stories from those who have experienced great love and great loss - and survived. Stories that explain how grief unmasks our greatest fears, strips away our layers of protection and reveals our innermost selves. Julia Samuel, a grief psychotherapist, has spent twenty-five years working with the bereaved and understanding the full repercussions of loss. This deeply affecting book is full of psychological insights on how grief, if approached correctly, can heal us. Through elegant, moving stories, we learn how we can stop feeling awkward and uncertain about death, and not shy away from talking honestly with family and friends. This extraordinary book shows us how to live and learn from great loss. (Publisher)

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