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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: 192

Cover image of 'Mortality'

Mortality (2012)

Atlantic Books

During the US book tour for his memoir, Hitch-22, Christopher Hitchens collapsed in his New York hotel room to excoriating pain in his chest and thorax. As he would later write in the first of a series of deeply moving Vanity Fair pieces, he was being deported 'from the country of the well across the stark frontier that marks off the land of malady.' Over the next year he underwent the brutal gamut of modern cancer treatment, enduring catastrophic levels of suffering and eventually losing his voice. Mortality is the most meditative piece of writing Hitchens has ever produced; at once an unsparingly honest account of the ravages of his disease, an examination of cancer etiquette, and the coda to a lifetime of fierce debate and peerless prose. In this eloquent confrontation with mortality, Hitchens returns a human face to a disease that has become a contemporary cipher of suffering. (Publisher)

Cover image of 'Go with the flow'

Go with the flow (2012)

Quartet Books

Diagnosed with breast cancer, internationally renowned photographer Gemma Levine determined to use her skill and connections to write a book about her experience that would be a companion, a resource, an aide and, finally, a practical guide to the incredible journey all cancer patients must travel if they are to regain control of their life. Medical practitioners, researchers, support staff, therapists, even make-up experts and a cordon bleu cook have gladly contributed accounts that, added together, provide a book of bountiful insights and comfort. A unique series of pool exercises which Gemma created for herself are included as an appendix. It is, in the end, overcoming the fear of and guilt about the suddenness of the diagnosis and the myriad unknown factors in coping with the treatment of cancer where this remarkable book will prove its worth. The skill and artistry of Gemma's black and white photographs contribute an additional, dynamic quality that captures the humanity and, ultimately, the love so many people involved in the treatment and help of cancer patients bring to bear. This book is, above all, a message of practical hope. (Publisher)

Cover image of 'The life and death of an unknown celebrity'

The life and death of an unknown celebrity (2012)

Janus Publishing Company Ltd

There was less of her now, but I loved her more. In this raw personal account of tragedy told from a male perspective, the author shares with us what must be one of the most devastating things in anyone’s life when he loses his wife and the mother of his two young children to breast cancer. Darren then has to face telling his children that their mother is never coming back as he learns to adjust to his new life and shake hands with his sorrow. To watch a loved one deteriorate so quickly is very disturbing. To stand by feeling helpless as the cancer spreads through the body, causing it to die, is heartbreaking. Shoe obsessions, screaming, sympathy sex and Starbucks were all part of his journey of self-pity as he loses himself in idle distractions. Through this honest account, Darren shows us that there is hope, once the searing pain of grief has subsided and memories of a past become subdued as he is set on the path to acceptance and happiness. A world without love is a lonely place, so it is comforting to know that love can blossom again - even after the worst and longest winter (Publisher)

Cover image of 'The yellow world. Trust your dreams and they'll come true'

The yellow world. Trust your dreams and they'll come true (2012)

Particular Books (Penguin Imprint)

Albert Espinosa never wanted to write a book about surviving cancer, so he didn't. He wrote a book instead about the Yellow World. What is the yellow world? The yellow world is a world that's within everyone's reach, a world the colour of the sun. It is the name of a way of living, of seeing life, of nourishing yourself with the lessons that you learn from good moments as well as bad ones. It is the world that makes you happy, the world you like living in. The yellow world has no rules; it is made of discoveries. In these 23 Discoveries Albert shows us how to connect daily reality with our most distant dreams. He tells us that 'losses are positive', 'the word 'pain' doesn't exist', and 'what you hide the most reveals the most about you'. Albert Espinosa has won several battles with death, which is why his stories are so full of life. He is powerful because he never gives up. And as a last resort he bargains: he swapped a leg and a lung for his life. He has learnt how to lose in order to win. He's hyperactive and prefers losing sleep to losing experiences. If you want to tell him something it has to be very good or told very fast. He loves to provoke people but he does it to make provocations seem normal. His greatest hope is that after you have read this book you will go off in search of your yellow world. Albert Espinosa is a bestselling author. At the age of thirteen, Albert was diagnosed with cancer, an event that changed his life forever. When he was fourteen, his left leg had to be amputated. At sixteen his left lung was removed, and when he was eighteen part of his liver was taken out. After ten years in and out of hospitals, when he was finally told that he had been cured of the disease, he realised that his illness had taught him that what is sad is not dying, but rather not knowing how to live. (Publisher)

Cover image of 'The topic of cancer'

The topic of cancer (2012)

Jessica Richards

The Topic of Cancer takes a completely new look at the disease which currently affects around one in every 200 people at some point in their lives. It is first and foremost, a manual, designed for those diagnosed with cancer but also for their friends, family and support networks. It is packed with good ideas and advice, as to how different aspects of cancer and health can be addressed, and how we can help each other through difficult times. There are chapters on how to cope with diagnosis, what questions to ask, how to manage your time, and choose your support network. There is a powerful section on positive thinking, and how to boost your mental strength, and a hugely practical section on diet, complete with recipes and store-cupboard ideas. There are chapters on what to say to someone who has been diagnosed with cancer, (and what not to say) and how to be a valuable source of help. All these are backed up with anecdotes and real life experience from Jessica, and shot through with her irrepressible and life-enhancing humour. (Publisher)

Cover image of 'Thrive. The Bah! guide to wellness after cancer'

Thrive. The Bah! guide to wellness after cancer (2012)

Hay House

There's still a part of us that thinks surviving cancer is a bit of freakish good fortune - the medical equivalent of having a cannonball go right through your middle and living to tell the tale - and so often it's hard to know how to 'do' life after cancer. Thrive: The Bah! Guide to Wellness after cancer focuses on moving on from a major physical, social and psychological trauma. Like Stephanie's first book, How I Said Bah! to cancer: A Guide to Thinking, Laughing, Living, and Dancing Your Way Through, Thrive uses a blend of storytelling, practical advice, humour, thinking techniques and strategies, visualisations, meditations, questions, candour and common sense designed to help those who have had a cancer to get from survival to a place where they are truly thriving. (Publisher)

Cover image of 'The cancer survivors club'

The cancer survivors club (2012)

CKG Ventures

The Cancer Survivors Club is a collection of truly inspirational, uplifting and assuring survival stories. These poignant personal accounts from normal people, demonstrate an extraordinary determination to survive against the odds. It proves with survival rates doubling, anything is possible. Unfortunately cancer affects everyone; worldwide there are around 12.7 million new cases diagnosed each year. Every two minutes someone in the UK is diagnosed with cancer. The Cancer Survivors Club has an excellent mix of stories, from the most common cancer, to the rarest. Some of the cancer types mentioned are; brain, bowel, breast, pancreatic, spinal, testicular, leukaemia, nasal and non-Hodgkin's lymphoma. Included in the book are a number of Chris Geiger's cheerful newspaper columns, including his humorous account of a prostate examination, getting sunburnt on a crowded beach and his Guinness World Record article. The Cancer Survivors Club will provide anyone touched by cancer with hope, strength and encouragement. Each story is written from the survivors or families own perspective, offering a very warm, friendly style of writing. This relaxed and sometimes humorous approach makes The Cancer Survivors Club an informative, positive and inspirational book that the reader will be able to relate to and gain strength from. Many cancer patients and those around them find the gruelling treatments very hard to cope with, they often feel very alone and isolated. This book allows anyone affected by the disease to focus their attention on surviving, ultimately making it their goal to share their story in future editions. Most patients have times when they feel they are the only person going through cancer treatment and have nobody to talk with. It is also a very difficult time for people close to the patient who have no previous experience in dealing with this disease. The Cancer Survivors Club is a must-read for the millions of cancer patients worldwide and a book of great support for their family and friends. (Publisher)

Cover image of 'When I die. Lessons from the death zone'

When I die. Lessons from the death zone (2012)

Little, Brown

On 29 January 2008 Philip Gould was told he had cancer. He was stoical, and set about his treatment, determined to fight his illness. In the face of difficult decisions he sought always to understand the disease and the various medical options open to him, supported by his wife Gail and their two daughters, Georgia and Grace. In 2010, after two hard years of chemotherapy and surgery, the tests came up clear - Philip appeared to have won the battle. But his work as a key strategist for the Labour party took its toll, and feeling ill six months later, he insisted on one extra, precautionary test, which told him that the cancer had returned. Thus began Philip's long, painful but ultimately optimistic journey towards death, during which time he began to appreciate and make sense of his life, his work and his relationships in a way he had never thought possible. He realized something that he had never heard articulated before: death need not be only negative or painful, it can be life-affirming and revelatory. Written during the last few months of his life, When I Die describes the journey Philip took with his illness, leaving to us what he called his lessons from the death zone. This courageous, profoundly moving and inspiring work is as valuable a legacy to the world as anyone could wish to bestow - hugely uplifting, beautifully written with extraordinary insight. (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 '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 'Being Sarah'

Being Sarah (2011)

Wordscapes

Being Sarah is Sarah Horton's personal story about breast cancer. As the shock of diagnosis subsides, Sarah starts looking for a treatment plan that suits her, searching for choices, and asks questions about all the medical drugs and treatment offered to her, from chemotherapy to hormone treatment. There are so many questions: in a field where so little is certain, what's best for Sarah? Why do we concentrate on cure rather than prevention? Is our terror about breast cancer sanitised by the 'pink' movement? And will I die? And there aren’t always answers. From the minutiae of getting through each day to the wider feelings of rage, hope, sadness, fear, loss, joy and helplessness, Being Sarah is about life, death, questions, options and choices. Breast cancer statistics in the UK are alarming, and the politics surrounding the illness perplexing. Mortality rates are falling, but diagnoses are rising. One in every nine women can now expect to be diagnosed with breast cancer at some time in her life, and - while we’re getting better at surviving - it’s happening more and more frequently. Sarah Horton is one of the 46,000 women diagnosed with breast cancer in the UK every year. This is her story. (Publisher)

Cover image of 'Please don't go. Big John's journey back to life'

Please don't go. Big John's journey back to life (2011)

Mainstream Publishing

In July 2009, former Arsenal, Celtic, West Ham and Wales soccer star John Hartson was diagnosed with testicular cancer, which had also spread to his lungs and brain. But before his treatment even began, John came to the brink of death after contracting pneumonia, ceasing to breathe and undergoing emergency brain surgery. Against all the odds, he pulled through, and in Please Don't Go he documents his incredible fight for life. John's truly inspirational account of how he has managed to overcome a very aggressive form of cancer will offer hope and courage to others affected by the disease. Including the poignant recollections of his wife Sarah and sister Victoria, it is a touching and ultimately uplifting insight into the bravery of the popular football hero, who has fought back to full health in the face of adversity. (Publisher)

Cover image of 'Not the last goodbye. Reflections on life, death, healing and cancer'

Not the last goodbye. Reflections on life, death, healing and cancer (2011)

Pan Macmillan

This is the story of an award-winning psychiatrist and neuroscientist who was diagnosed with a brain tumour by his own MRI machine at the age of thirty. It is the story of a doctor turned patient who, after overcoming cancer against the odds, started a twenty-year crusade to inform people about the disease and inspire them to take responsibility for their health. It is the story of a husband and father who is told that the cancer has returned, and that he only has a short time left. This is a story about dying. But most of all, it is a story about living. (Publisher)

Cover image of 'The elephant in the room: stories about cancer patients and their doctors'

The elephant in the room: stories about cancer patients and their doctors (2011)

Springer

The Elephant in the Room is a collection of real-life short stories about cancer patients and their doctors. These stories comfort and entertain, inform and engage, and are a treat to read. With humour and empathy, Jonathan Waxman explores the human side of cancer. (Publisher)

Cover image of '[sic]. A memoir'

[sic]. A memoir (2011)

Bloomsbury Publishing

Joshua Cody, a young composer, was about to receive his PhD from Columbia University when he was diagnosed with an aggressive cancer. He underwent six months of chemotherapy. The treatment failed. Expectations for survival plummeted. After consulting with several oncologists, he embarked on a risky course of high-dose chemotherapy, full body radiation, and an autologous bone marrow transplant. In a fevered, mesmerising voice, slaloming effortlessly between references to Ezra Pound, The Rolling Stones and Beethoven, he charts the struggle: the fury, the tendency to self-destruction, the ruthless grasping for life, for sensation - the encounter with a strange woman on Canal Street that leads to sex at his apartment; the detailed Hungarian morphine fantasy complete with bride called Valentina while, in reality, hospital staff are pinning him to his bed. As fresh and beguiling as it is brave and revealing, Joshua Cody has created a book that gives readers a long glimpse into a gorgeous, dark thrashing in the forecourt of death. Literary, hallucinatory and at times uncomfortable reading, [sic] is ultimately a celebration of art, language music and life. (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 'Kiss from a rose'

Kiss from a rose (2011)

Self-published using AuthorHouse

Kiss From A Rose is a novel about my battle with cancer. It depicts my journey from being diagnosed at 16, and reflects on four subsequent relapses. Using the stunning rose as a metaphor for life, it is aimed at teenagers who have just been diagnosed with Cancer, and are about to begin their battle. I hope it is both comforting and informative, but also very honest as it describes my darkest moments, and deepest fears. It illustrates that although the Thorns on my Rose prick and sting with each hurdle I approach in my battle to fight this disease, they don't make the flower any less exquisite. (Publisher)

Cover image of 'The cancer journey. Positive steps to help yourself heal'

The cancer journey. Positive steps to help yourself heal (2011)

Noble House

'The Cancer Journey. Positive steps to help yourself heal' is an inspirational and compelling book which provides the blueprint for dealing with cancer and is the book of choice for anyone affected by this disease. The authors, Polly, Pam and Nick have all had their own different cancer diagnoses, and feel passionate about sharing the information they have gathered which has helped them understand and cope throughout their journeys. The book is written in a warm, compassionate style with gentle humour, offering comfort and practical advice for anyone affected by cancer including family and friends. What should you eat, what shouldn't you eat? How do you deal with the side-effects? How do you politely tell others 'I have cancer' without triggering an uncomfortable silence! How to prepare for medical appointments and get the best out of your doctors. What can family and friends do to help? This book tells you things you need to know that your health care professionals may not tell you. Whether you have a diagnosis yourself, or you know someone with cancer, this book gives you the tools to empower yourself to take control and it offers advice and guidance to support you throughout your journey. When you arm yourself with knowledge of how to help yourself, you become an empowered participant in your own health. We will walk you through your diagnosis and give you permission and the tools to take control of your situation no matter where you are on the journey. This book gives you all of the information you need to make a difference in your health. (Publisher)

Cover image of 'How I said Bah! to cancer. A guide to thinking, laughing, living and dancing your way through cancer'

How I said Bah! to cancer. A guide to thinking, laughing, living and dancing your way through cancer (2011)

Hay House

This book tells how one woman said 'Bah!' to cancer through thinking strategies, a proactive approach to treatment, and a determination to keep the rest of her life going and retain a sense of humour (most of the time!). It shares everything she learnt along the way, from the nature of cancer cells and chemotherapy drugs, to how she was able to help her friends and family to help her. (Publisher)

Cover image of 'Wife, interrupted'

Wife, interrupted (2010)

Headline

My story begins where most women hope theirs will end - with a big, white wedding. After all, isn't that how every good fairy tale finishes? I thought so. And at 23, in love and engaged, it seemed my 'happy ever after' was secure... That is until the man of my dreams died three weeks into our marriage. Look at me now: a 23 year old widow. You'd never guess. I've learnt to hide it well. Because the way I saw it, there were only two options... A) Dress in black, become a recluse and watch my wedding video on a loop? OR B) Decide falling in love again is out of the question and choose an easy, uncomplicated alternative - sex... Funny, powerful, and painfully honest, WIFE, INTERRUPTED examines the complicated process of grieving - and proves that sometimes the most unthinkable things can be the most comforting. (Publisher)

Cover image of 'Beyond the pink moon. A memoir of legacy, loss and survival'

Beyond the pink moon. A memoir of legacy, loss and survival (2010)

Self-published using CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform

In this touching, frank and informative memoir, Nicki Boscia Durlester intimately chronicles her transformational journey after being diagnosed with breast cancer. Her story begins with her mother, who was diagnosed with the disease in 1962: a time when breast cancer was only discussed behind closed doors, and long before women took an active role in their diagnosis and treatment. Nicki provides unique insight into being part of a large Italian-American family afflicted with the BRCA2 gene, and shares poignant stories about her mother and aunts who faced breast and ovarian cancer with extraordinary grace and courage. Nicki writes candidly about her frustration in finding the right team of doctors as well as the highs and lows of her journey, sharing humor and heart along the way. She puts a human face on statistics ranking breast cancer as the second leading cause of cancer deaths in women in the United States. This deeply moving story of legacy, loss and ultimately survival is told through the eyes of a daughter who shared an unbreakable bond with her mother. As she travels the scary, unpredictable road through her own diagnosis, treatment and recovery, Nicki discovers the most difficult challenge she faces becomes the most spiritually transcendent experience of her life. This Special Edition of Beyond the Pink Moon includes an Afterword from the author. A portion of the proceeds from sales of this book will be donated to breast cancer research. (Publisher)

Cover image of 'The psychological impact of breast cancer: a psychologist's insights as a patient'

The psychological impact of breast cancer: a psychologist's insights as a patient (2010)

Radcliffe Publishing

What is it like to experience breast cancer? This book presents rare and valuable insights into the impact of diagnosis, treatment and prognosis from a woman who has experienced breast cancer as both patient and as health professional. It informs and educates readers about the psychological realities of living with breast cancer, of treatments such as surgery and radiotherapy, and the impact of social and historical attitudes to the breast and breast cancer on a woman's experience of the disease. The conflicts Cordelia Galgut experienced between conventional wisdom and her own first-hand experience are explored vividly and reflectively. (Publisher)

Cover image of 'The c-word'

The c-word (2010)

Arrow Books

Carrie Bradshaw fell in Dior, I fell in Debenhams. It was May 2008, and it was spectacular. Uncomfortable heels + slippy floor + head turned by a cocktail dress = thwack. Arms stretched overhead, teeth cracking on floor tiles, chest and knees breaking the fall. It was theatrical, exaggerated, a perfect 6.0. And it was Significant Moment #1 in discovering that I had grade-three breast cancer. The last thing Lisa Lynch had expected to put on her 'things to do before you're 30' list was beating breast cancer, but them's the breaks. So with her life on hold, and her mind close to capacity with unspoken fears, questions and emotions, she turned to her Mac and started blogging about the frustrating, life-altering, sheer pain-in-the-arse inconvenience of getting breast cancer at the age of 28. The C-Word is an unflinchingly honest and darkly humorous account of Lisa’s battle with The Bullshit, as she came to call it. From the good days when she could almost pretend it wasn't happening, to the bad days, when she couldn't bear to wake up, Lisa's story is emotional, heartbreaking and often hilarious. The C-Word will make you laugh and cry, and ultimately reaffirm your faith in life. (Publisher)

Cover image of 'Who's been peeping in my bed'

Who's been peeping in my bed (2009)

Aspect Design

A message to be told? A story of passion? A campaign against the establishment? Surely not a 'journey through cancer'? 'Who's Been Peeping In My Bed?' is my story about my fight against cancer and living with the disease; a disease that was looked upon like leprosy in the early days. Now people are living with cancer and opening a new window in their world. I have tried to express how cancer opened my eyes to things that matter; hence my campaign for the accessibility of new cancer drugs for everyone, which forms a substantial part of my story. It deals with the difficulties faced in obtaining the drugs that have helped me, but are not freely available on the NHS. This does not take away from the reality that must be faced; instead it simply tries to make it part of a new way of life. (Publisher)

Cover image of 'How does it feel? Reflections on a year in the life of one woman following a diagnosis of bowel cancer'

How does it feel? Reflections on a year in the life of one woman following a diagnosis of bowel cancer (2009)

Self-published using AuthorHouse

'What are you going to do now?' my teacher colleagues asked, as I packed away my things after my retirement party. I replied, 'I might like to write a book'- never guessing that the subject of the book was going to be - bowel cancer. It was only three days later that I received my diagnosis. 'How does it feel?' (reflections on a year in the life of one woman following a diagnosis of bowel cancer), is a moving story of Ann's battle with bowel cancer, through surgery and chemotherapy. It includes a journal which describes the day to day ups and downs of illness; and also an anthology of pictures and poems through which Ann expresses her inner journey. This book will provide encouragement to all who suffer from cancer. Ann's story is told with honesty and directness and this book expresses well the complexities of the cancer experience. Ann's reflections lift the spirit and offer a glimpse of the spiritual meaning found in the simple things of life, which become all the more precious at times of crisis. (Publisher)

Cover image of 'Even the eyebrows. A practical guide to managing cancer with your boxing gloves on'

Even the eyebrows. A practical guide to managing cancer with your boxing gloves on (2009)

Self-published using AuthorHouse

When I was told I needed chemotherapy I froze with fear. The word itself has almost mystical powers, conjuring up vivid mental images of frail, shadow-like people curled up on beds, quietly writhing in agony and slowly losing the will to live. In truth I'd never really thought about what it actually was, I just knew it was bad. I asked my family and friends what they thought chemotherapy was and, bearing in mind how prevalent cancer is these days, the responses were as varied as they were downright peculiar: 'I've never actually been sure what's involved, but I know it's unpleasant.' 'It's a large machine you slide into, a bit like the old iron lung machine,' (does anyone remember the old iron lung machine?)' 'Every bit of your body's bombarded by deadly rays.' 'It's an injection that lasts for hours and hours.' Well, here are just four good reasons why I needed to dispel some ridiculous myths about cancer treatment. Even the eyebrows? is an honest account of what to expect before, during and after treatment, and a guide to making the journey as comfortable and calm as humanly possible. (Publisher)

Cover image of 'The selfish pig's guide to caring'

The selfish pig's guide to caring (2009)

Piatkus (Little, Brown Book Group)

Six million people in the UK provide unpaid care for disabled or elderly relatives or neighbours, often unnoticed. Their job is long, lonely and hard, yet there is limited support and no formal training. As a result, carers suffer frequent damage to physical and mental health and are liable to feelings of guilt brought on by fatigue and isolation. Hugh Marriott, a carer himself, has written this book for them - and also for the rest of us who hadn't realised what went on behind those closed doors. The Selfish Pig's Guide to Caring airs topics such as sex, thoughts of murder, coping with incontinence and dealing with friends and officials who fail to understand. It's a must-read for anyone involved with caring. (Publisher)

Cover image of 'The spare room'

The spare room (2009)

Canongate Books Ltd

Helen has little idea what lies ahead when she offers her spare room to an old friend of fifteen years. Nicola has arrived in the city for treatment for cancer. Sceptical of the medical establishment, placing all her faith in an alternative health centre, Nicola is determined to find her own way to deal with her illness, regardless of the advice that Helen can offer. In the weeks that follow, Nicola's battle against her cancer will turn not only her own life upside down but also those of everyone around her. (Publisher)

Cover image of 'Lopsided. How having breast cancer can be really distracting. A memoir'

Lopsided. How having breast cancer can be really distracting. A memoir (2008)

Virago Press (Little, Brown Book Group)

'As far as I'm concerned, Lance Armstrong and I are close to exact opposites, both physically and mentally ...If surviving this particularly deadly form of breast cancer required any of the Lance-like traits, such as a willingness to physically exert myself, I was as good as dead.' When well-meaning family and friends found out about her diagnosis, they often came armed with copies of Lance Armstrong's cancer survival book. Meredith reacted by penning a sharp, irreverent and laugh-out-loud funny memoir. More than just an account of her harrowing and, at times, hilarious treatments during her illness, Lopsided offers up entertaining memories of an offbeat life. A feisty and irreverent memoir about life and death, family and friends, and everything in between. (Publisher)

Cover image of 'Saving my arse. A story of cancers, colons and Singapore noodles'

Saving my arse. A story of cancers, colons and Singapore noodles (2008)

Mark Davies

If you or a family member or friend is diagnosed with Bowel/colon cancer then this book will hopefully be of some use and comfort. But I really wrote this book for all of those people, who thought like me that cancer and its treatments begins and ends with losing your hair and sitting around in hospitals like a displaced Hare Krishna convention, whilst having an uncontrollable urge to run the marathon. I want to allay, if at all possible, some the fears that we all have of cancer without boring anyone to tears or being over emotional. More people than ever are surviving, and go on to live a normal life. I am not a doctor, nor have I ever had any medical training, so I found that I didn't really understand a lot of what was being talked about by the doctors. Questions like: What is Chemotherapy and what does it do? What happens during Radiotherapy? (Publisher)

Cover image of 'Singing the life. The story of a family in the shadow of cancer'

Singing the life. The story of a family in the shadow of cancer (2008)

Vermilion (Random House)

As a result of a genetically-transmitted gene, all three Bryan sisters, Felicity, Elizabeth and Bunny have had cancer. And, unusually, each of them suffered a different cancer; ovarian, breast and pancreatic. As the gene also has a dominant inheritance, half of their family members can be expected to carry it. Now, in a personal and deeply affecting memoir, Elizabeth writes of her family's extraordinary experience of this dreadful disease. Writing not only as a daughter, sister and aunt of those afflicted and bereaved by cancer, but as a sufferer herself, she will tell of the shocks, sadnesses, dilemmas and uncertainties that come with diagnosis and then treatment. Giving a personal view from both the perspective of a patient and that of a relative, as well as comparing the impacts of remission and terminal prognoses on herself and those around her, Singing the Life gives a uniquely wide-ranging account of dealing with life-threatening illness and the threat it still poses in her family. Eloquently setting Elizabeth's personal story against the universal fears, problems and worries that face those affected by cancer, this is an inspirational and encouraging read unlike any other on the subject. (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 'It's not over till the bag lady rings'

It's not over till the bag lady rings (2007)

Spring Hill

On the basis of comments left on the author's blog, this book should appeal to cancer patients, survivors and those who care for people with cancer - healthcare professionals as well as friends and family - and anyone else wanting an insight into this wretched disease. Cancer sufferers not only have to deal with big issues - like confronting their own mortality - they have to cope with the everyday as well - the effect on relationships, changes in diet, whether or not to replace the dishwasher - and in the case of bowel cancer, perhaps a colostomy or ileostomy - while all the time trying to remain positive. Based on the author's online diaries, this book will enable the reader to get inside the mind of a cancer patient and discover what it feels like to have to cope with this disease. (Publisher)

Cover image of 'One lump or two'

One lump or two (2007)

Arima Publishing

One Lump or Two is a collection of contemporary verse reflecting on the breast cancer experience of an ordinary young woman. It explores the emotional aspects of a breast cancer diagnosis and engages the reader in the reflective journey taken when coping with this 'unwelcome visitor'. Nicole Touyé grew up in the West Midlands. She is legally trained and has a background in teaching in Further Education. In recent years she has retrained and has run her own business while managing a series of life changing events. She now lives in Worcestershire with her photographer husband and young son. (Publisher)

Cover image of 'Take off your party dress. When life's too busy for breast cancer'

Take off your party dress. When life's too busy for breast cancer (2007)

Pocket Books (Simon and Schuster imprint)

When Dina Rabinovitch was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2004 she didn't know a thing about the disease. Today she's an expert. Her experience of the condition and its treatment, from diagnosis through mastectomy to trialling drugs so new their side-effects aren’t even documented, is a rollercoaster ride through the medical and emotional ups and downs of the disease that is the most common cancer affecting women in the U.K. today. Warm, lively, at times irreverent, Rabinovitch's story of juggling a hectic career and a large, extended family while adjusting to the changes that cancer brings, makes essential reading. (Publisher)

Cover image of 'Ollie'

Ollie (2007)

Arrow Books Limited

Like the swallows, our son Ollie came in the spring and left in the autumn. Dancing, singing, swooping - there was something birdlike about his energy, joy and laughter - but also the fleeting, enigmatic quality of his life. When he was two he lost all his speech, as autism turned his life - and ours - into a baffling challenge. Then at four he had to face a new challenge when he almost died from leukaemia. But chemotherapy worked its magic and he made a full recovery. He was a tough survivor and nothing seemed to dim his spirit: he could light up a room and energize everyone around him. So it was a huge shock, after several cancer-free years, when a fatal brain tumour was discovered. This time his body had had enough and he died very suddenly. He was twelve. Ollie had extraordinary courage and endurance. Time after time he bounced back, determined to enjoy life. He was obstinate, mischievous, playful, flirtatious, quixotic, funny. He generated - and continues to generate - huge amounts of laughter. And he was very beautiful. We always felt that if autism had not unravelled the wiring of his neural pathways, he would have achieved extraordinary things. This is the story of the journey we made with Ollie. Unlike a mountaineer, pursuing extreme experiences out of choice, he had difficulty thrust upon him: he was forced to be brave. For me, too, the journey was far more compelling than any expedition. (Publisher)

Cover image of 'Cancer made me a shallower person. A memoir in comics'

Cancer made me a shallower person. A memoir in comics (2006)

HarperCollins

Miriam Engelberg is a successful cartoonist who was diagnosed with breast cancer at the age of 43. Like many who face trauma, tragedy and illness, she was unable tell her story in traditional written and visual forms. Instead, she has written a distinctly unique cartoon memoir. Following in the Art Spiegelman tradition of graphic novels, Engelberg walks us through every emotional and physical stage of the disease, from diagnosis to a return to 'normal' life and everything in between: waiting for the biopsy results by pretending to be doing everything but that, awkwardly breaking the diagnostic news to horrified acquaintances, shopping for wigs while fighting nausea and disorientation from her cancer drugs, feeling like an outsider in support groups, and speculating about what caused the cancer in the first place - overzealous cheese consumption or apathy about multi-vitamins? 'Cancer Made Me A Shallower Person' is an offbeat and darkly humorous account of one very funny woman's battle with an uncertain and often fatal illness. (Publisher)

Cover image of 'The enduring melody'

The enduring melody (2006)

Darton, Longman and Todd

A moving and tender meditation on loving, living and dying by one of the greatest Anglican spiritual writers. Michael Mayne, author of three of the best-selling spirituality titles of recent years, Learning to Dance, Pray, Love, Remember, and A Year Lost And Found, set out to complete a final book that would tackle the linked questions of what is the solid ground of a belief which for him has proved authentic and survived into old age, and how ageing may affect us physically, mentally and spiritually. On completing it, he discovered that he was suffering from cancer of the jaw, and in a nine-month journal he reflects (among much else) on whether his faith stands firm, and where God may be found in the challenging country of cancer. The Enduring Melody is a moving and tender meditation on loving, living and dying by one of the greatest living Anglican spiritual writers. Michael Mayne is the former head of religious programmes at the BBC and Dean Emeritus of Westminster. (Publisher)

Cover image of 'Apology for absence'

Apology for absence (2004)

Arc Publications

Julia Darling's first book, Sudden Collapses in Public Places, grew from her experiences of being treated for breast cancer; "[it] helped me to step out of the difficult present and to use my imagination to be somewhere else." Her second collection looks at the world beyond the hospital, though still from the viewpoint of a cancer patient in the advanced stages of the illness. The themes are familiar, but here she writes with a wider perspective, a deeper understanding which reach out to the heart of the human condition and the greater mysteries of life, albeit in an understated way. This is a powerful and deeply affecting book, completely unsentimental yet charged with emotion - indeed, one of those rare books that have a profound and lasting effect. (Publisher)

Cover image of 'Past caring. The beginning not the end'

Past caring. The beginning not the end (2004)

Polperro Heritage Press

Actress Audrey Jenkinson was starring in a BBC television series when she put her career on hold and returned home to Edinburgh to care for her mother suffering from a stroke and her father with cancer. In Past Caring, she describes how she tried to cope with her parents' deaths and recalls the void she felt at the time. `I wondered how others coped in similar situations. When I discovered there were no books on the subject I decided to write one.' Audrey travelled throughout the UK, interviewing former carers and asking them how they rebuilt their lives. 'The stories I heard were both fascinating and uplifting, and I knew other people would find them interesting and helpful. Past Caring also includes a twelve-step recovery guide for 'past carers'. (Publisher)

Cover image of 'Sudden collapses in public places'

Sudden collapses in public places (2003)

Arc Publications

Julia Darling's first poetry collection is about breast cancer - but it is not in the least bit morbid, nor is it aimed only at women. In her words: 'Poetry gave me a voice to express the comedy and tragedy of my illness.' (Publisher)

Cover image of 'C. Because cowards get cancer too...'

C. Because cowards get cancer too... (1999)

Vermilion (Random House)

Shortly before his 44th birthday, John Diamond received a call from the doctor who had removed a lump from his neck. Having been assured for the previous two years that this was a benign cyst, Diamond was told that it was, in fact, cancerous. Suddenly, this man who'd until this point been one of the world's greatest hypochondriacs, was genuinely faced with mortality. And what he saw scared the wits out of him. Out of necessity, he wrote about his feelings in his TIMES column and the response was staggering. Mailbag followed Diamond's story of life with, and without, a lump - the humiliations, the ridiculous bits, the funny bits, the tearful bits. It's compelling, profound, and witty. (Publisher)

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