Gallery Books scoops 'no-holds-barred' memoir by journalist Holden

Gallery Books scoops 'no-holds-barred' memoir by journalist Holden

Gallery Books is to publish Lucid, a "no-holds-barred" memoir by journalist Lucy Holden next February.

The Simon & Schuster imprint will release Lucid: A Memoir of an Extreme Decade in an Extreme Generation on 3rd February 2022. Fritha Saunders, editorial director for non-fiction, acquired UK and Commonwealth rights from Jon Wood at RCW.

Described as "raw, hilarious and sometimes filthy", the memoir examines what it means to be young today. The synopsis explains: "Following a noisy and hectic decade in London, the pandemic finally upends a world of unsatisfactory and non-committal dating, overpriced flat-shares and short-term work contracts and she retreats to the safety and stability of her parent’s home. There she is finally afforded a rare opportunity to step off the merry-go-round and pause to take stock of her life. Written with her trademark humour and no-holds-barred honesty, Holden examines the extent to which housing, work and relationship insecurity all impact on mental health and the hopes and dreams of today’s 20- and 30-year-olds."

Holden is a freelance journalist who has written for the Times, Telegraph, Grazia and Daily Mail. She specialises in features on Millennial life in a tough world where work and living conditions are unstable and love is swipeable. She was shortlisted for Young Journalist of the Year at the British Press Awards in her first year of journalism, has appeared on BBC Radio and Radio 5 Live, and is an amateur stand-up comedian.

She said: “In some ways Lucid was a long time coming. My twenties were spent thinking I had something to say, but wondering what it was? I felt like Keith Waterhouse, believing the only thing I’d managed to do was survive, albeit past the age of 22, and am certainly glad Lucid will be read while I’m still breathing.

"Despite the obvious, dreadful flaws of the pandemic, it did at least provide me with a conclusion to a fast, previous life of hedonism and unconsciousness. Forced out of London and back in with my parents, distance allowed me to see the last decade with a clarity I couldn’t at the time and suddenly everything in my domino life made sense. It was written feverishly in that heatwave summer of 2020 using a combination of diaries, a mass of kept communication, a trail of journalism and Spotify playlists which threw me right back to the time I was writing about and the mood I was in. I think of it as a full-stop to a past life; a story of resilience, defining relationships and a search for love and a home. I hope it will make readers laugh (as well as possibly cry) and nod in recognition. Most of all, I hope it will help older generations understand what it’s like to be young now, and make younger readers understand how normal it is to feel like you're struggling.”

Saunders commented: “I was really drawn to Lucy’s candour and her ability to convey that special, but also confusing and challenging time of your life when you’re finally living independently as an adult, having the most amazing times and the darkest times, and having to deal with whatever life throws at you.”