This Is Not About Me

Janice Galloway

Published: 4 May 2009
Paperback, B Format
129x198mm, 352 pages
ISBN: 9781847080998


From her earliest years with a boozy, accident-prone father and a reluctantly pragmatic mother, Janice Galloway's grew up as a watcher - careful and vigilant. Then her parents' marriage broke up and mother and daughter moved to an attic above a doctor's surgery. When her big sister Cora returned home, with her steady stream of boyfriends, snappy dress sense and matching temper, evasion became a way of life. This is a funny and telling book about the routine dependencies and confusions, hopes and triumphs of childhood; it is also a book about emergence, as, slowly, the beginnings of unsuspected rage pushed the silent girl towards her voice.

About the author

Image of Janice Galloway

JANICE GALLOWAY's previous books include the novels The Trick Is To Keep Breathing, which won the 1990 MIND Book of the Year Award, Foreign Parts, which won the 1994 McVitie's Prize, and Clara, which won the 2004 Saltire Book of the Year Award. She is also the author of two collections of short stories. Janice Galloway lives and works in Glasgow. More about the author


‘A book unlike any other, in which Galloway has captured what it means to start to become yourself’



‘A dazzling book - Galloway is brilliant on the minute detail of childhood perception. She is also brave, funny, resilient and in spite of everything full of emotional generosity’

‘A literary, not a misery, memoir. There is mirth, and a Proustian attention to the sights, sounds and smells of the industrialized coast of Clydeside’

‘Beautifully observed, witty and wonderfully evocative’

‘Blistering, terrifying, always moving’

‘Galloway provides sentences blazing with light, a gorgeous draft of terror’

‘Galloway takes her readers straight back into childhood's wincingly recognisable uncertainties, dislocations and disruptions. She had more of them than most ... one of the most moving, yet completely unsentimental, accounts of growing up that you will ever read’

‘On reluctantly closing the boards of this unforgettable memoir, the words "first volume" are strangely comforting - a combination of Galloway's power and the fact that the wee girl done good make it so’

‘Sublime prose and fierce honesty set it apart ... Part of Galloway's skill in This is Not About Me is how she keeps a child's sense of bewilderment and secret understanding’

Mind Unit - websites, content management and email marketing for the arts