Tamsin gave up a successful career in London to move to a derelict Hebridean croft. Her extraordinary and moving memoir I am an Island reveals once again the incredible ability of the natural world to provide solace in adversity. Tamsin’s discussion of her experiences illustrates how resilience and belonging comes to each of us differently.
Reviews of I am an Island:
‘The memoir of the year’. Vogue
‘A fascinating memoir’. Daily Mail
‘This is a startling book, a vivid and terrifying reminder of how an island can seduce, madden – and ultimately sustain those brave enough to endure its confines.’ Madeleine Bunting, author of Love of Country
‘An extraordinary book, a wild and redemptive account of reaching rock bottom and swimming back into the light. I’m awed by Tamsin’s courage, her resilience and huge heart. Her island will stay with me for a very long time.’ Olivia Laing, author of The Lonely City and To the River
‘An island tale like no other. An unforgettably moving and compulsive read, steeped in anguish and beauty. A book that is unafraid to stare deep into the abyss, and still find a way forward. The story of a woman completely broken by life, and her fifteen-year struggle to find the inner strength to restore herself, through sheer determination, and by immersing herself in solitude.’ Neil Ansell, author of Deep Country and Deer Island
‘Completely astonishing. Using language of shimmering beauty, Tamsin Calidas describes the unravelling of a relationship with such exquisitely small stitches that the eventual thread-baring of her physical and emotional safety, her sense of identity and purpose, blows in like a cold slap of Hebridean wind. A Hardyesque, stripped back connection to the landscape emerges. And yet only with the fragmentation of everything that matters is the fragility of life transcended and restored by the triumphant pull of a determination to survive.’ Juliet Nicolson