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Blade in the Shadow Launch Video

On 14 October, we had a wonderful book launch for our third memoir, Blade in the Shadow by Jillian Halket, which we recorded and you can watch below. It includes readings by Jillian and a discussion about OCD. We also talk about why Jillian decided to write this. xx guts



Blade in the Shadow is a coming-of-age memoir about a young Scottish woman struggling to navigate life as her obsessive compulsive disorder worsens and her mind is plagued by violent intrusive thoughts. The book follows Halket through mental illness, addiction, university, sexual assault, motor tics and her relationship with her family. Through access to treatment, she forges her identity not in spite of her disorder but in the acceptance of it and all its messiness.


We've had a number of outstanding reviews and the book was recommended on the BBC Radio Scotland programme, The Afternoon Show with Janice Forsyth.


"Halket balances shocking descriptions of her unwelcome and violent thoughts with sublime storytelling and poetic prose to give the reader authentic insight into how ‘Harm-themed’ OCD impacts her life. Often uncomfortable in the reading, Blade in the Shadow is revelatory and necessary. And above all, it blazes with hope." — Harriet Mercer, author of Gargoyles


“A dark, rich account of how it feels to live with OCD, glimmering with light and hope. A bold pursuit of a life that is more than just a way to survive.” — Jessica Andrews, author of Saltwater (Portico Prize 2020)


“a raw and gripping account of the unseen pain and terror that can be part of life with OCD. This book is vivid, lyrical and at times startlingly honest... The writing is fresh, frank and fearless and I highly recommend it.” — Catherine Simpson, author of TrueStory and When I Had a Little Sister


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Join us on 4 November 2021 for a reading from Blade in the Shadow followed by discussion. This is an online event hosted by Goldsmiths College, GLITS seminar. The event is open to the public and starts at 5pm GMT. Click here to join us (it's on MS Teams).


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Blade in the Shadow is available from Guts Publishing: gutspublishing.com/product-page/blade-in-the-shadow. You can also buy it from The Book Depository, Amazon worldwide, Waterstones, Barnes & Noble, and many other online retailers.

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