The Novel Cure

An A to Z of Literary Remedies

Ella Berthoud & Susan Elderkin

A good book, read at the right moment, should leave you uplifted, inspired, energized and eager for more. With so many books to choose from, what’s the point of reading even one more that leaves you cold?
The Novel Cure by Ella Berthoud, Susan Elderkin (Hardback ISBN 9781786891044) book cover

Available as Hardback, Paperback, eBook

A warm, wise guide to prescribe you a literary remedy for any of life’s ailments

When read at the right moment, a novel can change your life. Bibliotherapists Ella Berthoud and Susan Elderkin know the power of a good book, and have been prescribing each other literary remedies for all life’s aches and pains for decades. Together, they’ve compiled a medical handbook with a difference: a dictionary of literary cures for any malaise you can imagine.

Whether it’s struggling to find a good cup of tea (Douglas Adams, two sugars) or being in need of a good cry (Thomas Hardy, plus tissues), as well as cures for all kinds of reading ailments - from being a compulsive book buyer to a tendency to give up halfway through a novel - Ella and Susan have the tonic for all ailments, great or small. Written with authority, passion and wit, The Novel Cure is an enchanting reminder of the power and pleasure of forgetting your troubles in a good book.

“I keep a different acupuncturist, chiropractor, doctor and manicurist on speed dial for every single organ in my body. I keep this book by my bed for everything else”
Ruby Wax

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“An exuberant pageant of literary fiction and a celebration of the possibilities of the novel”

“A charming addition to any library. Time spent leafing through its pages is inspiring - even therapeutic”

“Brilliant … A perfect gift”

“A tonic in itself. It’s tempting to become a hypochondriac just to read more”
Damian Barr

Ella Berthoud & Susan Elderkin

Ella Berthoud and Susan Elderkin met as English Literature students at Cambridge University, where they began giving novels to each other whenever one of them seemed in need of a boost. Ella went on to study fine art and become a painter and art teacher. Susan became a novelist and journalist. In 2008 they set up a bibliotherapy service through The School of Life in London, and since then have been prescribing books either virtually or in person to clients all over the world. With four children, two husbands, various cats, dogs, mice and tortoises (some of them imaginary) between them, they created their first book, The Novel Cure, together in 2013, followed up by The Story Cure in 2016.

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