An intelligent, thought-provoking and beautifully crafted memoir, describing a gruelling, yet ultimately inspiring 14-year-battle with mental illness, interwoven with childhood memories of growing up in Africa and Pakistan.
'Beautiful and heart-rending . . . I could smell Africa on every page' - A. A. Gill
Caroline Jones was born in Ethiopia and spent most of her childhood in East Africa. She read French and Spanish at Oxford University and went on to make documentaries for the BBC. Now aged 39, she is happily married with two children.
Yet beneath this seemingly perfect public exterior, Caroline was in fact privately indulging in a pattern of destructive behaviour that left her exhausted, anxious, depressed and full of self-loathing - from the ages of 17 to 31, for 14 years, Caroline was suffering from an extremely widespread yet comparatively little-talked about mental illness - bulimia.
Caroline is articulate, intelligent, insightful and frank about her experiences, interweaving the journey of her illness with memories of her African childhood, her time at Oxford, her work for the BBC, her family and other relationships, making for a warm and engaging memoir. Her perceptive, retrospective approach to her illness allows her to transcend the topic of bulimia and talk more generally about self-destructive behaviour - there are lessons here which will speak to a little part of everyone.
Beautiful and heart-rending . . . I could smell Africa on every page
Beautifully crafted memoir . . . [Caroline Jones] lays bare her troubled past with clarity and authenticity - Mail on Sunday
The story that emerges is both fascinating and complex, drawing together Jones's personal experience and the wider sickness of the world we all live in. - Guardian
In this beautifully written memoir [Jones] evocatively recalls the landscape of her youth and courageously recounts her struggles - Sunday Express
Fearless, soul-baring memoir . . . Jones interweaves her battle with bulimia with an astutely observed exploration of home, memory, and family inheritance . . . Evoking her East African childhood with a painterly quality, Jones vividly recreates growing up in a loving family . . . Jones's memoir is absorbing and should provide encouragement for readers struggling with any mental illness . . . Told without self-pity or psychological jargon, The Spaces in Between moves inventively between phases of Jones's life and is sprinkled with startling images that blend the panoramic with the intimate - Irish Examiner
Inspiring - Argus (Brighton)
Thoughtful - The Spectator