Learning to Think.

Learning to Think.

A broken system kept her trapped, education helped her break free

Summary

'An astonishing tale, well structured and punchily told..’- Sunday Times

'Impossible not to read in one sitting.' - Stylist, Best books for 2024

'What would you do if you began to suspect the events of your childhood didn't happen as you remembered them? In this evocative memoir, Tracy King confronts the stories we all tell ourselves in order to live.' HELEN LEWIS


.....

When you have nothing, you cling to whatever gives you hope.


Put yourself in Tracy King's shoes. Growing up in an ordinary council estate outside Birmingham; a house filled with creativity, curiosity and love, but marked by her father's alcoholism and her mother's agoraphobia.

By the time she turns twelve her father has been killed, her sister taken into care and her mother ensnared by the promises of born-again Christianity.

This isn't the stuff of cult documentaries; this is the story of an ordinary family trapped in a broken system. It's a story that could happen to anyone without the tools to transform their circumstances. And it's the story of how Tracy found her way out.

A shocking, inspiring and ultimately hopeful memoir that holds up a mirror to the everyday realities of living in poverty, it is also a testament to the power of books and to learning to question our world.

Reviews

  • An astonishing account of a father’s violent death, exorcism and religious superstition….
    Learning to Think is, in many ways, a book about demons: the addiction, violence, mental health struggles and, yes, superstition, that so often accompany poverty. But it’s also the story of an extraordinary family, full of energy and joie de vivre. It’s a story that brims with life and hard-won hope… Well structured and punchily told.
    Christina Patterson, Sunday Times

About the author

Tracy King

Tracy King is a writer, producer and science communicator based in England. She has worked on subjects ranging from science and technology to politics and videogames, for the BBC and in the Guardian, Telegraph, New Statesman, Stylist and The New European, amongst others. She was a columnist for Custom PC magazine for over ten years. Her science and critical-thinking animations include a collaboration with Tim Minchin, Storm, which has six million views on YouTube and was adapted into a bestselling graphic novel. Her television and radio credits include Sky News, BBC Newsnight, Good Morning Britain and BBC Sounds.
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