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GETTING IT OFF MY CHEST: How I lost my breast and found myself. [Paperback]

Janice Day
4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (36 customer reviews)
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Book Description

7 July 2009
At the age of 39, unhappily married, unfulfilled and seven stone overweight, Janice Day was diagnosed with breast cancer and recommended for a full mastectomy. In Getting It Off My Chest she recounts, with frankness, charm and humour, how the gruelling experience of illness, of breast surgery and reconstruction, prompted her to examine what was wrong with her life and how to make it better. Along the way, she rejects the unanimous recommendations of her doctors to undergo chemotherapy, separates from her husband, comes to terms with her unhappy childhood, loses seven stone and launches a successful career as a cabaret singer, stand-up comedian and writer. The result is a hilarious and unusual memoir that will inspire and entertain anyone who has ever had to live through difficult times.

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Product details

  • Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Old Street Publishing (7 July 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1905847890
  • ISBN-13: 978-1905847891
  • Product Dimensions: 13.2 x 19.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (36 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 352,900 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Janice Day graduated from Birmingham University in the late 1970s with a degree in English. Finding this no use whatsoever she became a danceband singer by night and temp secretary by day. Original singer with both the Piccadilly Dance Orchestra and Keith Nicholl's Cotton Club Orchestra, she has appeared at the Royal Festival Hall, the Queen Elizabeth Hall, the Purcell Room, Proms in the Park, Pizza on the Park and the Wigmore Hall for Radio Three.

In the '90s she found herself married and assailed by two children, who started small and grew bigger. Forced to leave the stage by the family, she became a breast cancer survivor and locked herself in the garden shed to write books. Getting it off my Chest is her first.

She once won an award for stand-up comedy when the other acts were disqualified. Other performance outlets are the 1930s character act Mrs Pinkerton-Lovely and a one-woman theatrical adaptation of Getting it off my chest. Replacing her husband with an electric blanket, she lives in Epsom with two large children and a cat called Rolo.

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Customer Reviews

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4.9 out of 5 stars
4.9 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Un-Put-Down-Able! 14 July 2009
This memoir is laugh-out-loud funny whilst at the same time a reminder how devastating cancer can be.
Janice Day has written a refreshingly bright and honest account in a style that's a real page turner. I defy anyone to put it down once they've read the first page!
Not only is it an entertaining read, the book carries several messages. For me, they are to find out ALL you can about your illness and challenge if the treatment offered is right for you. It MIGHT WELL BE but find out first. Secondly, if you are lucky enough to get a second bite at life make changes so that you can live it to the full.
Well done to the author for writing a book that should be on everyone's must-have list for this summer. A joy from cover to cover.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A must to read! 14 July 2009
By Janet
I loved this book and so many times I found myself laughing out loud and reading passages to anyone close to me. Such a brave person truly an inspiration to anyone who has breast cancer - I would really recommend this book.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Frank, fascinating and very, very funny 14 July 2009
This wouldn't normally be my kind of book - at a first glance it looks like it is either going to be chick-lit or mis-lit. But in fact it's a cancer memoir with a difference - as well as candid and emotional it's warm, charming and, at times, laugh-out-loud funny.

Janice is refreshingly honest throughout - the coverage of her childhood and family life gives a real sense of knowing her as she strives to transform her life. The details of diagnoses and treatment options, presented as correspondence from her actual medical records, are quite fascinating, and the investigation of alternative therapies never veers into New Age dogma.

It's a wonderful read, the icing on the cake being that Janice brings real humour to her situation, however grim.

Highly recommended.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I laughed out loud at this book. If you have a friend or relative with breast cancer, give them this book. It is very very funny and inspirational. My only regret is that I didn't buy it when I was first diagnosed. Janice Day is an excellent writer as well as a very funny woman.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A must read - won't take long! 3 Aug 2009
It won't take long to read but you'll remember it for a long time afterwards. I've never written a review before, but hope that this just might make one or two more male readers pick this book up to read it. It made me laugh, smile, not quite cry (but i am a bloke and we don't, do we - i can hear the storms of protest brewing)and it made me think. Janice tells us how, in her opinion and in her circumstances, she beat cancer. She tells us about her journey through life. She tells us about her journey through surgery and her journey through the changes to her body. And many more journeys beside. And she tells us how each thread influences the others. Best of all, she tells it all with a wit, an honesty and in such a readable way that i couldn't put it down. (Well, only once). Read it - you'll like it.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Brilliant. A much needed laugh out loud book but based on real experience. It resonated so much with me that I actually copied out chunks of it into the journal I've been keeping about my own journey through breast cancer. I'd recommend this to everyone.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Getting it off my chest 20 Oct 2009
I think the way the author has blended memoirs from her youth, the pain and turmoil of divorce and surgery with clinical accounts was very well crafted. But I think where she really scored was that she was honest, so the reader empathised with her situation and she carried it all along with great humour (very difficult mixing a harrowing experience with light humour). This book is a beacon of hope to anyone going through the trauma of breast cancer but also for people just coping with life and its ups and downs.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars There is always hope 7 Oct 2009
By Robert
Thoroughly good and entertaining read. Janice has in a humoristic way managed to tell a serious story that is both uplifting and shows that there is something positive to come out of any event or situation. I enjoyed the story tremendously and would recommend this book to anyone who is looking for the brighter side of life. Getting it Off My Chest
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars true story, told with honesty and humour.
A brilliant insight into someone else's life. Their childhood, their friends, their marriage, their health and most importantly how they deal with all of it. Read more
Published 1 month ago by natandella
5.0 out of 5 stars Getting if of my chest
This is a wonderful book which had me laughing out loud. A real inspiration to anyone with breast cancer. A must read.
Published 8 months ago by Ricky
4.0 out of 5 stars Not what I expected
Newly diagnosed I was anticipating yet another largely serious account of someone else's experience. Read more
Published 11 months ago by Beatrice
5.0 out of 5 stars Readable, informative and funny.
This is a really good book. It is well written and Janice skillfully blends past and present to create a narrative which is unputdownable. Read more
Published on 13 Feb 2012 by Laura Bonthron
5.0 out of 5 stars life affirming book
This book has been completely inspirational to me.

This is such a life affirming book. I've had cancer and can relate to it because of that, but even if I hadn't had... Read more
Published on 23 Jan 2012 by Karen
4.0 out of 5 stars Something Totally Different
This brave woman lets us laugh and cry with her throughout her long, sometimes very hard experience. Read more
Published on 30 July 2010 by nancy
5.0 out of 5 stars Funny, fascinating - I loved it!
I wasn't quite sure what to expect from this book and wouldn't normally plough through books on recovery from breast cancer just for the hell of it. Read more
Published on 17 April 2010 by Skippy
5.0 out of 5 stars Laugh and cry over one book
Once you start reading this book, you have to finish it. It will make you laugh, it will make you weep and it will make you wonder at the courage of Janice Day in the way she... Read more
Published on 29 Jan 2010 by Amazon Customer
5.0 out of 5 stars fantastc read
I loved this book,it made me laugh oftern ,I have great admiration in the way it was written with such honesty..Highly reccomended .
Published on 18 Jan 2010 by Angela Thomas
5.0 out of 5 stars Laughed and cried reading this inspirational journey
What a truly fantastic and inspirational book. Much of Janice's story mirrored my journey and I found myself laughing and crying at different points. Read more
Published on 9 Jan 2010 by A. Wallace
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