This is the story I promised myself, aged twenty-one, that I would one day be brave enough - and well enough - to write.
Clare Bowditch has always had a knack for telling stories. Through her music and performing, this beloved Australian artist has touched hundreds of thousands of lives. But what of the stories she used to tell herself? That 'real life' only begins once you're thin or beautiful, that good things only happen to other people.
YOUR OWN KIND OF GIRL reveals a childhood punctuated by grief, anxiety and compulsion, and tells how these forces shaped Clare's life for better and for worse. This is a heartbreaking, wise and at times playful memoir. Clare's own story told raw and as it happened. A reminder that even on the darkest of nights, victory is closer than it seems.
With startling candour, Clare lays bare her truth in the hope that doing so will inspire anyone who's ever done battle with their inner critic. This is the work of a woman who has found her true power - and wants to pass it on. Happiness, we discover, is only possible when we take charge of the stories we tell ourselves.
'The words that kept coming to me over and over again as I read this book were authenticity and decency. Clare Bowditch made me feel how wonderful and difficult and amazing it is to be a human.' LEIGH SALES
'Brutal at times but funny as f@#k. This book will change a lot of lives for the better.' BERNARD FANNING
'Reading this book felt as intimate as having a long, heart-breakingly vulnerable yet hilarious conversation with Clare by a fire with wine in hand. It is a celebration of the human struggle, how we can learn to befriend (and say "f@#k off" to) our demons, and ultimately write our own story. There is so much hope in this book.' MISSY HIGGINS
'Clare Bowditch cements her status as one of Australia's most mesmerising storytellers with this debut. Her ability to lay bare the vulnerabilities, hurts and triumphs of a woman's life is second to none. She's my kind of girl, for sure.' CLEMENTINE FORD
'This book is like a life-buoy, tossed across a generation by a sick and frightened young woman, who grew up to be Clare Bowditch. An extraordinary tale, faithfully remembered and generously told. What a woman. A transfixing and powerful memoir.' ANNABEL CRABB
'Clare Bowditch opens her heart and history with staggering generosity - unpicking the birth of her creativity and the early scars that forged her. Much like the woman herself, YOUR OWN KIND OF GIRL is unflinching, entertaining, inspiring and real. I inhaled this book.' KAT STEWART
'A brave and generous work. Never didactic or patronising, Bowditch nonetheless has much to share as she invites the reader inside the tender heart and evolving mind of a young woman determined to make sense of herself and her place in the world. Told with Bowditch's trademark warmth and openness, this book is an act of compassion as much as it is the product of diligent reflection and insight.' PEGGY FREW
'For parents, indeed anyone that would like to understand mental illness, and that recovery is possible. Clare writes with extraordinary self-awareness and insight. Her journey encourages anyone to keep going; to believe that there is something better, to take one step at a time toward it, and not to give up. A truly compelling story of resilience, survival and growth. ' DR CHARLOTTE KEATING
'A deeply revealing insight into how a true artist is born. Brutally honest, compelling and affecting, Clare's luminous warmth shines through every page.' KATE MILLER-HEIDKE
'I fell in love with this book from the start - it's a brutally honest, witty, smart and courageous account of Clare Bowditch finding her path and her power.' EDDIE PERFECT
'Clare takes us to the edge of the stuff we flee from - the late-night inner turmoil of an eating disorder, the loneliness of being the "fat kid" and death - so that, as her friend Leonard Cohen once said, the light might come in.' SARAH WILSON
'Clare's story (so far) reveals how resilience is created from the suffering life inflicts. Clare discovers the unlikely weapons of FAFL and FOF to kickstart her recovery and combat "Frank", her internal nemesis, and with the guidance of Ron, her therapist, she transforms breakdown into breakthrough. Clare's suffering morphs into flourishing, as this highly creative human finds her authentic self and builds her artistic career and her own family. Clare's honesty and warmth shines strongly through the pages of this inspiring and moving memoir.' PROFESSOR PAT McGORRY
'Finally, an author who has found the words to describe that excruciatingly complex relationship many women have with food.' JAMILA RIZVI
'What I love best about the glorious Clare Bowditch is how richly she embraces life and holds to what's most sustaining. Her beautiful book is so like her music: bold, original, earthy, funny, grateful, honest, truthful and tuneful - and fabulously female.' STEPHANIE DOWRICK, author of Choosing Happiness
'Vibrant, touching, hilarious. Clare's heart-baring makes me want to live brighter, tell more truths, and laugh - in a sweet way - at my self-criticism and fears. This is book is a healer.' DANIELLE LAPORTE, author of The Desire Map