*The Sunday Times Top Ten Bestseller*
Rose Tremain (or Rosie as she was then) grew up in post-war London – a city still partly in ruins, where both food and affection were fiercely rationed.
But when she is ten years old, everything changes. She loses her father, her house, her school, her friends and is dispatched to a freezing boarding-school in Hertfordshire. Slowly though, the teenage Rosie escapes from the cold world of the Fifties, into a place of inspiration and friendship, where a young writer is suddenly ready to be born.
‘An evocative, unflinching memoir...electric’ Mail on Sunday
"Rose Tremain famously eschews autobiographical material in her fiction, so this account of her childhood feels so fresh it stings… [she] brings her formidable talent for characterisation to bear on the vanished, culpable cast of her childhood"
"Rose Tremain manages to fit more wisdom, more unforgettable scenes, more illuminating recollections, into this 194-page memoir than other writers do in memoirs three times the length. A book as nourishing, but concise as this makes you wonder why other writers have to be so long-winded ... For anyone who loves Tremain's novels this memoir is a vital companion"
"Intriguing and moving ... So much more alert and open and alive than so many slightly disappointing memoirs by otherwise great writers ... Rosie is a work of self-discovery in the best possible sense of the word - it pulls you in, unsettles, comforts and exhilarates and, finally, makes you see your life anew"
"Rose Tremain turns to non-fiction for the first time with this lyrical account of her life up to the age of 18 ... The evocation of 1950s schoolgirldom, with all its emotions, elations and smells, is wonderfully vivid - distinctive, like being donated a set of dreams ... A quiet drama, but as you'd expect it's the writing that makes this book such a delight"
"A beautifully written ode to the tenacity of our younger selves"