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Catherine Gray is a Sunday Times Bestselling author of five books, including The Unexpected Joy of Being Sober. She's sold over a quarter of a million books in English-speaking territories, her work has been published in the likes of Stylist, Marie Claire, The Lancet Psychiatry and the Guardian, and her books have been translated into nine languages. In 2018, Catherine founded charitable campaign Sober Spring, a three-month sabbatical from alcohol, and she now runs it with Alcohol Change UK, for whom she is an ambassador. She's been sober since 2013. Catherine lives in Hove and when not writing she enjoys falling off a paddleboard, giving her plants names like 'Cassandra' and 'Miguel', and spamming Instagram with pictures of dogs. Twitter.com/cathgraywrites Instagram.com/unexpectedjoyof
Sunshine Warm Sober embraces the joys of sobriety. This sequel to Catherine Gray’s The Unexpected Joy of Being Sober covers what she has learnt over last three years, now that she has reached her eighth sober year. Using flashbacks to her past, she highlights her positive experiences of being ‘sunshine warm sober’ rather than ‘stone cold drunk’ during birthdays, holidays, dog sitting and other occasions. In her book, she explores addiction using medical, psychological and behavioural experts and case studies, discusses the role of alcohol in society, and answers thought-provoking questions such as: What does the label ‘addict’ really mean? Can you have an addictive personality? Is alcohol a parenting aid? Sunshine Warm Sober is filled with honesty, wit and warmth, as well as facts and personal stories. This fascinating read may help you to reassess your relationship with alcohol and change your life for the better.
**From the Sunday Times Bestselling Author** Life-affirming - THE TELEGRAPH Wonderful - INDEPENDENT She made it her mission to learn how to be default happy rather than default disgruntled - RADIO 4 - WOMAN'S HOUR Take a leaf out of Gray's book and be kinder to yourself by appreciating life just as it is - IRISH TIMES This book came to me in an hour of need - during lockdown when I had to focus on the positive, appreciate simple things, not lose my shit, and value each day. It was a pure joy for me and held my hand - SADIE FROST Interesting and joyful. Lights a path that could help us to build resilience against society's urging to compare life milestones with peers - LANCET PSYCHIATRY Underwhelmed by your ordinary existence? Disillusioned with your middlin' wage, average body, 'bijou' living situation and imperfect loved ones? Welcome to the club. There are billions of us. The 'default disenchanted'. But, it's not us being brats. Two deeply inconvenient psychological phenomenons conspire against our satisfaction. We have negatively-biased brains, which zoom like doom-drones in on what's wrong with our day, rather than what's right. (Back in the mists of time, this negative bias saved our skins, but now it just makes us anxious). Also, something called the 'hedonic treadmill' means we eternally quest for better, faster, more, like someone stuck on a dystopian, never-ending treadmill. Thankfully, there are scientifically-proven ways in which we can train our brains to be more positive-seeking. And to take a rest from this tireless pursuit. Whew. Catherine Gray knits together illuminating science and hilarious storytelling, unveiling captivating research showing that big bucks don't mean big happiness, extraordinary experiences have a 'comedown' and budget weddings predict a lower chance of divorce. She reminds us what an average body actually is, reveals that exercising for weight loss means we do less exercise, and explores the modern tendency to not just try to keep up with the Murphys, but keep up with the Mega-Murphies (see: the social media elite). Come on in to this soulful and life-affirming read, to discover why an ordinary life may well be the most satisfying one of all. PRAISE FOR CATHERINE GRAY'S WRITING: Uplifting and inspiring The Evening Standard Not remotely preachy The Times Jaunty, shrewd and convincing The Telegraph Admirably honest, light, bubbly and remarkably rarely annoying The Guardian An empathetic, warm and hilarious tale from a hugely likeable human The Lancet Psychiatry
* 'This refreshing, unusual book needs to exist. A culture shift which repositions a single person as someone who is relationship-free, complete, and not lacking is long overdue.' - The i * * 'Absolutely f*cking brilliant' - Florence Given * Having a secret single freak-out? Feeling the red, heart-shaped urgency intensify as the years roll on by? Oh hi! You're in the right place. Over half of Brits aged 25-44 are now single. It's become the norm to remain solo until much later in life, given the average marriage ages of 35 (women) and 38 (men). Many of us are choosing never to marry at all. But society, films, song lyrics and our parents are adamant that a happy ending has to be couple-shaped. That we're incomplete without an 'other half'*, like a bisected panto pony. Cue: single sorrow. Dating like it's a job. Spending half our lives waiting for somebody-we-fancy to text us back. Feeling haunted by the terms 'spinster' or 'confirmed bachelor.' Catherine Gray took a whole year off dating to find single satisfaction. She lifted the lid on the reasons behind the global single revolution, explored the bizarre ways cultures single-shame, detached from 'all the good ones are gone!' panic and debunked the myth that married people are much happier. Let's start the reverse brainwash, in order to locate - and luxuriate in - single happiness. Are you in? *Spoiler: you're already whole PRAISE FOR CATHERINE GRAY'S WRITING: Fascinating. Bryony Gordon Not remotely preachy. The Times Jaunty, shrewd and convincing. The Telegraph Admirably honest, light, bubbly and remarkably rarely annoying. The Guardian Truthful, modern and real. Stylist Brave, witty and brilliantly written. Marie Claire Haunting, admirable and enlightening. The Pool
Ever sworn off alcohol for a month and found yourself drinking by the 7th? Think there's 'no point' in just one drink? Welcome! Quitting drinking, whether for a month or for life, is enormously satisfying, but also fiendishly difficult. -There's the getting started ('But I have that party next week!') -There's the feeling clenched and socially anxious. -Throw in a sizeable amount of social pressure and suspicious questions ('So, do you have a drinking problem?' -Finally, chuck in the hundreds of pro-drinking messages we see every day; films where a round of shots always comes with a whoop; fridge magnets that say 'I don't trust people who don't drink'; pub clapboards announcing 'Strong people need strong drinks'; and memes declaring 'Beer: it's a holiday in a glass.' Whew. It's no wonder we find it tricky to stay teetotal. But don't worry. We're going to tackle all of the above. I'm going to give you tools that enable you to clear all of these stumbling blocks with the grace of a gazelle. So, let's get started, shall we? PRAISE FOR CATHERINE GRAY'S WRITING: An icon of the Quit Lit movement. Conde Nast Traveller Fascinating. Bryony Gordon. Not remotely preachy. The Times Jaunty, shrewd and convincing. The Telegraph Admirably honest, light, bubbly and remarkably rarely annoying. The Guardian Truthful, modern and real. Stylist Brave, witty and brilliantly written. Marie Claire Haunting, admirable and enlightening. The Pool
*Catherine Gray's new book, Sunshine Warm Sober, is now available to pre-order* THE SUNDAY TIMES BESTSELLER 'Gray's tale of going sober is uplifting and inspiring' - The Evening Standard 'An icon of the Quit Lit movement' - Conde Nast Traveller 'Fascinating' - Bryony Gordon 'Not remotely preachy' - The Times 'Jaunty, shrewd and convincing' - Sunday Telegraph 'Admirably honest, light, bubbly and remarkably rarely annoying' - Alice O'Keeffe, Guardian 'Truthful, modern and real' - Stylist 'Brave, witty and brilliantly written' - Marie Claire 'The Unexpected Joy of Being Sober came to me at a time when I much needed it... The book became my best friend, and got me through, and took me on a journey.' - Sadie Frost 'Particularly lovely, because it's not a deep and dark dive into someone's terrible addiction. It's a celebration of everything that she has gained from not drinking' - Laura Donnelly Ever sworn off alcohol for a month and found yourself drinking by the 7th? Think there's 'no point' in just one drink? Welcome! There are millions of us. 64% of Brits want to drink less. Catherine Gray was stuck in a hellish whirligig of Drink, Make horrible decisions, Hangover, Repeat. She had her fair share of 'drunk tank' jail cells and topless-in-a-hot-tub misadventures. But this book goes beyond the binges and blackouts to deep-dive into uncharted territory: What happens after you quit drinking? This gripping, heart-breaking and witty book takes us down the rabbit-hole of an alternative reality. A life with zero hangovers, through sober weddings, sex, Christmases and breakups. In The Unexpected Joy of Being Sober, Catherine Gray shines a light on society's drink-pushing and talks to top neuroscientists and psychologists about why we drink, delving into the science behind what it does to our brains and bodies. Much more than a tale from the netherworld of addicted drinking, this book is about the escape, and why a sober life can be more intoxicating than you ever imagined. Whether you're a hopelessly devoted drinker, merely sober-curious, or you've already ditched the drink, you will love this book. 'Haunting, admirable and enlightening' - The Pool 'A riveting, raw, yet humorous memoir with actionable advice. A truly unique blend of storytelling and science that holds a universe of hope.' - Annie Grace, author of This Naked Mind 'Like listening to your best friend teach you to be sober. Lighthearted but serious, it's packed with ideas, tools, tips and, most importantly, reasons for living a sober life. This book is excellent.'- Eric Zimmer, host of podcast The One You Feed 'Gray's fizzy writing succeeds in making this potentially boring-as-hell subject both engaging and highly seductive' - The Bookseller 'Catherine Gray is an exceptional writer. Her exquisitely crafted thoughts on the joys of being sober are not only deeply honest and pragmatic, but she manages to infuse tons of humor. This is a delightful, informative, and compelling read for all those who are sober or seeking sobriety.' - Sasha Tozzi, Huffington Post columnist 'Catherine's writing style and voice captivate me. She has a way of translating her story into an experience I don't want to end. I want to drink every drop she produces.' - Holly Whitaker, founder of Hip Sobriety School and co-presenter of Home podcast 'This book is great. A balanced, informative and entertaining melange of memoir, sociology and psychology. I identified very strongly with huge sections of it.' - Jon Stewart, guitarist of Sleeper and Leaving AA, Staying Sober blogger > 'Sober is too often equated with sombre in our culture. Gray's book turns that idea on its head. Her experience of sobriety is joyful and life-affirming. A must-read for anyone who has a nagging suspicion that alcohol may be taking away more than it's giving.' - Hilda Burke, psychotherapist and couples counsellor 'Catherine Gray really captures the FUN we can have in sobriety. This book challenges the status quo; sobriet sounds as liberating as taking a trip to the jungle. Fun and inspirational. What an important book for our time! A joy to read.' - Samantha Moyo, founder of Morning Gloryville