I Never Promised You a Rose Garden

I Never Promised You a Rose Garden


The ground-breaking cult classic about a young woman's battle with schizophrenia
With a Foreword by Esmé Weijun Wang and an Afterword by the author

'She fought them with her head and her teeth while the restraints were being tied, trying, doglike, to bite herself'

Sixteen-year-old Deborah's identity is shattering, as she retreats further and further from the 'normal' world into her imaginary kingdom of Yr, a fantastical inner refuge both lush and horrifying. Sent to a psychiatric hospital, she must, with the help of a gifted psychiatrist, try to find a way back. Joanne Greenberg's fictionalized autobiography became a global bestseller on publication in 1964, and remains a wrenching account of mental illness.

'A rare and wonderful insight into the dark kingdom of the mind' Chicago Tribune

'Marvellous ... a courage that is sometimes breathtaking' The New York Times Book Review


  • Marvelous... With a courage that is sometimes breathtaking... (Greenberg) makes a faultless series of discriminations between the justifications for living in an evil and complex reality and the justifications for retreating into the security of madness
    New York Times Book Review

About the author

Joanne Greenberg

Joanne Greenberg is the author of nineteen books, including I Never Promised You a Rose Garden. She received the Harry and Ethel Daroff Memorial Fiction Award as well as the National Jewish Book Award for Fiction in 1963 for her novel The King's Persons. She was a professor of anthropology at the Colorado School of Mines. Her book, In This Sign, was made into a Hallmark Hall of Fame movie called Love Is Never Silent. Greenberg was a volunteer firefighter and paramedic for approximately 15 years.
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