The Skeleton Cupboard: June non-fiction choice

The_Skeleton_Cupboard'I first became fascinated by the frontal lobes of the human brain when I saw my grandmother's sprayed across the skirting board of the front room.' Tanya Byron's direct, no-nonsense style is apparent from the very first sentence of her fascinating new book, The Skeleton Cupboard. 

Tracing her journey from rookie mental health practitioner to seasoned professional consultant, Tanya describes in clear-eyed detail the extraordinary experiences of her daily life in the hospital, and the diverse people who come to her for help with a multitude of difficulties. The patients she sees suffer from loneliness, anorexia and anxiety, as well as severe cases of dementia and a psychopath with a knife.

Tanya's own mistakes and anxieties are interspersed with the fascinating stories that unfold in her consulting room. The complex web of emotion in Tanya's own family drives her towards a career in helping people, but can often confuse her motives. Her sharply written chapters are as gripping as any thriller, yet as compassionate and thoughtful as you would expect from a highly-trained psychologist. And it is often extremely funny, especially when Tanya’s friends and colleagues support and lift her through the bumpy early years.

An inspiring and brave story that will leave you with far more understanding and empathy for those in society who, as Tanya puts it, 'have seen the darker side of life'... 

About the author

Tanya_ByronProfessor Tanya Byron is a psychologist, a public speaker, a writer and broadcaster. She appeared in the BBC television series Little Angels, Teen Angels and The House of Tiny Tearaways and writes for The Times and Good Housekeeping. She is a presenter and contributor to a range of Radio 4 programmes, and co-wrote the BBC comedy 'The Life and times of Vivienne Vyle' with Jennifer Saunders. Tanya is Honorary Lecturer at UCL and UEL, speaks regularly across government, and advises ministers at the Department for Education. She continues to practise as a Consultant Clinical Psychologist specialising in working with children and adolescents. She is married to actor, Bruce Byron, and has two children, Lily and Jack.

You can find out more about Tanya's work on her website here.


Macmillan have 50 copies to give to Mumsnetters – to claim yours please fill in your details below. We'll post on the thread when all the copies have gone. If you're not lucky enough to bag one of the free books, you can always get your hardback or Kindle version here.

If you get a free copy, we do expect you to come and and tell us what you think. So please feel free to discuss the book here throughout the month and look forward to hearing your thoughts…

This giveaway closes 10am, Tuesday 10 June, so apply now.



Last updated: about 3 years ago