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Cleaning Up: How I Gave Up Drinking and Lived Paperback – 1 Jan 2009


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Product details

  • Paperback: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Serpent's Tail (1 Jan 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1846686555
  • ISBN-13: 978-1846686559
  • Product Dimensions: 12.9 x 1.6 x 19.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (27 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 148,560 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

What sets this book apart [is that] it is illuminating about the inner emotional damage that leads to wildly self-destructive behaviour; and also about the society that allows such behaviour to flourish... pretty much unputdownable. (Evening Standard)

Eminently practical and personal... one to recommend to the friend who needs to clean up (John Sutherland Financial Times)

There [is] something heroic about someone who rages on her own terms, crumbles and cracks on her own terms, and then builds herself up with bricks she's baked herself (Independent on Sunday 2009-01-04)

About the Author

Tania Glyde is an author and journalist. She has written two novels to date, Clever Girl and Junk DNA. Her short stories appeared in the Disco 2000 and Vox 'n' Roll anthologies. She was Time Out's sex columnist for two years.

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Customer Reviews

4.0 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

12 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Darling Diamond on 15 Sep 2009
Format: Paperback
Tania seems to have her stuff together. An accomplished author and broadcaster, she is a lady many of us might envy, yet who would think that she used to be an insecure mess hooked on drink, drugs and casual sex with undeserving people?
This book is about much more than just giving up drinking. It is about discovering a whole new level of self-respect, learning your lessons and getting on in life.
I think most of us will be able to relate to the times she describes, being stuck in some dark hole without a hope of getting out - but amazingly, she does despite an usupportive, emotionally cold mother and a rather motley crew of superficial, unreliable friends and lovers. She holds a mirror up and examines herself honestly, warts and all - then turns that mirror back on the reader to encourage her to do the same. She is eloquent and touchingly vulnerable in her descriptions of excess, regret and ultimately discovering a well-deserved love for herself.
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16 of 17 people found the following review helpful By Suzanne Portnoy on 20 Feb 2008
Format: Paperback
I've known Tania since her sober years and her story came as a revelation to me. It was hard to believe that the confident, amazing woman I know was once so emotionally distraught and unhappy. This isn't your usual misery memory but the story of a woman who fell into drinking as a child licking the liquor off her parent's glasses and then moved later on to vodka and Class A's. There's a bit of social commentary too but not so much as to be boring. Tania has a very conversational writing style and her voice really comes through. I read it over a couple of days and then went back and reread passages. And if anyone thinks the NHS is taking alcohol abuse seriously, Tania's book proves otherwise!
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By auntie4 on 31 Aug 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Having read many books on the subject of alcholism I have grown used to reading sanitised accounts of what it means to live as an alcholic, mainly outlining how much help there is out there for people wanting to give up and how wonderful life will be when it you do. Unless you are wealthy and can afford to go private there is absolutely no help for anyone wanting to give up and believe me it takes alot of soul searching, heartache, humiliation and false starts before you reach that place in your head. At the end of the day it is all down to the individual and Tania Glydes story illustrates this perfectly. I was quite shocked at times at how honest she was about some of her experiences but I am forever grateful she was because she helped me feel I was not alone and despite everything I have done whilst drunk I can move on because I am not my past. I would recommend this book to anyone struggling with an addiction and also anyone trying to cope with someone close who is suffering because Tania really does tell it like it is.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Lorraine Smith on 25 July 2011
Format: Paperback
Harrowing reading at first, the girl obviously had no sense of worth but not for reasons you could easily put your finger on. I identified with her hatred of summer completely. In the recovery part, she is matter of fact, doesn't dress it up and rightly and proudly thanks no-one for it but herself. I loved this book as I identified strongly with the authors story I suppose. Definitely worth a read even if quitting is still just a far away notion in your head.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Ms. K. James on 10 Mar 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
A shockingly honest account of a young womans battle with alcohol. By reading her experiences, her downfalls, this book warns you of the path your life might follow if you take her lead. A very rewarding end to her story shows her in a knew state of mind and having established long term sobriety. This is an excellent real life drama which can teach invaluable insight in to alcoholism and just how far someone can fall.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Ms. C. Myers on 30 May 2010
Format: Paperback
What a blast of fresh air this memoir is. Having read many on the subject of addiction, this strong memoir arrives after a flux of American authors extolling the virtues of 12 step programs and evangelical redemption. Her astute observations and intelligence are a welcome relief in this genre. Also highly witty and informative. I think anyone struggling with a drinking problem, especially women, will get some clarity from Ms.Glyde's story. Highly recommended.
Clea Myers, writer 'Tweaking the Dream: A Crystal Meth True Story'Tweaking the Dream: A Crystal Meth True Story
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By SJ SMART on 17 Mar 2009
Format: Paperback
I dont understand all this negative feedback and/or comments! I really loved this book, I found it moving and touching, funny and interesting. Tania Glyde is a very under-rated writer and observer, and this very personal book is a great piece of work.
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15 of 18 people found the following review helpful By D. Eales on 9 Feb 2008
Format: Paperback
This book is brilliantly written by a superb writer. She has grasped the nettle of her addiction and laid it all out with often, scary honesty.
This is certainly not flim-flam or does it kow-tow to the highly dubious (if you examine it) self-help movement, it is a chronicle of someone who came through under her own steam. This is to be respected and indeed, admired. This book does not glorify addiction in any way, neither does it offer pat answers, it is both laugh-out-loud funny and awfully sad.
Well done!
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