The State of Me

The State of Me A beautifully written debut novel by an exciting author Curriculum VitaeName Helen FleetWork Experience Waitress Serial volunteerEducation Four Highers French A English A Maths A Chemistry A

  • Title: The State of Me
  • Author: Nasim Marie Jafry
  • ISBN: 9781906321055
  • Page: 147
  • Format: Paperback
  • A beautifully written debut novel by an exciting author.Curriculum VitaeName Helen FleetWork Experience Waitress Serial volunteerEducation Four Highers French A , English A , Maths A , Chemistry A , 1981 Ordinary Arts degree, MA, 1990 Certificate in Counselling Skills and Theory, 1992Travel France, Madeira, San Francisco, Rome, Greece And London.Relationships A beautifully written debut novel by an exciting author.Curriculum VitaeName Helen FleetWork Experience Waitress Serial volunteerEducation Four Highers French A , English A , Maths A , Chemistry A , 1981 Ordinary Arts degree, MA, 1990 Certificate in Counselling Skills and Theory, 1992Travel France, Madeira, San Francisco, Rome, Greece And London.Relationships Sex with three men Hadi, Ivan and Fabio I still love Ivan.Additional Information I have a mini hi fi and a pine bookcase, and an expensive leather briefcase got it in the January sales after Fabio and I had finished and a suit I haven t worn since my graduation.It s 1983 and 20 year old university student Helen Fleet should be enjoying the best days of her life, but while all her friends go on to graduate and have careers in London, she is forced to return to her parents home, bedridden with vile symptoms that doctors can t explain and often don t believe She is eventually diagnosed with M.E a cruel illness that she must learn to live with over the next decade All of her relationships are tested and changed by her condition, but Helen s story is so much than an account of her suffering At times sad and at times funny, the author skillfully leads the reader through the trials and tribulations of Helen s life, perfectly capturing her unusual experiences as a twenty something woman living in 80s Scotland with a mystery illness.Based on the author s own experience of ME The State of Me explores the loneliness and chaos of one of the most misunderstood illnesses of our time, but also celebrates the importance of family, friendships, and sexual love.A stunning, eloquent and linguistically perfect debut novel.

    One thought on “The State of Me”

    1. I've been meaning to read this book for such a long time, and now I find it quite difficult to review!It was definitely a tough read, because I am struggling with the same disease as Helen, the main character, and Nasim Marie Jafry, the author of the book. Although very painful to read, the book shows in a real and (sometimes brutally) honest way what living with this disease can be like. While her friends, peers and boyfriend get on with their personal lives and careers, Helen has to drop out o [...]

    2. The State of Me by Nasim Marie Jafry is one of the most emotionally charged, incredible novels I will ever read.The State of Me is the story of Helen Fleet. In 1983, she begins to develop symptoms that no doctor can explain. Some thing it’s food poisoning, some think its stress or fatigue. Helen knows that something is wrong within her but no one believes her.Bedridden, she gets worse and worse, still trying to fight what is wrong with her body. Eventually, after many months, she is diagnosed [...]

    3. This book so perfectly expresses the reality of life with M.E. It made me so sad and yet made me laugh a lot too - which, again, is the reality of this illness. I recommend it to everyone who knows anyone with M.E. (or Chronic Fatigue if that's what you prefer to call it - it's much less scary a term). SPOILER: I didn't like the end. Don't marry a man who shags your best friend 'cos they're worried about how ill you are!?

    4. I loved the story, hadn't really heard about ME before so found it quite interesting. super sad but and a real page turner

    5. This is one of the most beautifully written books I have read in an age. The characters are real and not at all clichéd, and the settings enhance rather than simply provide a backdrop. A large part of the book is given over to details of ME, which the lead character suffers from, but the book is never preachy. I'd recommend this to anybody that enjoys beautiful writing.

    6. I think this fell a bit short for me - mostly because it was quite samey throughout - there wasn't a great deal of progression. Perhaps it suffered by being too closely based on the author's own experiences? I feel she is a strong writer, with an interesting story to tell. But perhaps a straight non-fiction telling of her illness would have been stronger?

    7. After reading the blurb for this book, I expected it to be different, but I say that in a good way. I expected it to be full of accounts of doctors’ visits, of woe-is-me narrative, of medical terms and explanations. While it contains a smattering of some of those things, the main focus is the inner life of a twenty-something girl, living in the 80s in Scotland, who’s striving to become a responsible adult and who also happens to be struggling to cope with a little-known, and little understoo [...]

    8. ME is a debilitating illness which often is misunderstood. This novel, based on the authors own experience is a great insight into the bumpy road many ME sufferers have had.When in France on her year abroad for university Helen starts to become ill to the point she leaves early returning home. After doctors appointment after doctors appointment and no diagnosis and nothing to make her feel better. Eventually receiving a diagnosis of ME she begins different therapies with no avail. Along with thi [...]

    9. This funny and insightful book was thoroughly absorbing. Nasim has done a wonderful service to people with ME, by being very open about all aspects of the illness but never self-pitying nor boring! The reader can only cheer her on whilst she snatches what life she can out from under the debilitating illness. All the characters are written well and the writer has a knack for portraying relations deftly but true. It was truly a joy to read, if sometimes a little heartbreaking.The only reason I hav [...]

    10. Interesting to read, but a bit slow at times. I'd recommend this book to people who have CFS - or know someone who has CFS - and would like to read about the author's experiences with this illness.

    11. Lovely novel in 'chicklit' vein, but with a purpose - to inform readers about living with the chronic illness, ME. The writing is brisk, funny, wry, light and warm, the characters are likeable and believable, the story itself revolves around a romance, but a romance compromised by the onset of disabling illness, and how this resolves - the pain of separation and the hope of reconciliation against the daily struggle of living life and finding love as a young woman with a challenging health proble [...]

    12. I had high hopes of this book because I have ME too. But I was bored by the story, it seemed to drag itself along. I didnt like Helen, I found her depressing and lacking personality. I fell asleep reading this bookice!! I didnt finish it, I couldnt force myself to read anymore.

    13. This is a book that I can't really rate overall. My review of this book is in three categories. I give it:1. 9/10 for the quality of the writing, the characters and the story and so on. The author has achieved something amazing here, to tell this story so well is a real achievement. (Even more so considering the author's illness.)2. 6/10 for the accuracy of how the experience of living with the symptoms and disability of M.E. is described. The main character (and the author) clearly have M.E. bu [...]

    14. I have wanted to read this book for ages – touted as a well-written novel (her writing has been previously shortlisted for 2 prizes) about someone who has ME. The author herself has ME, and I deeply respected her writing wherever I saw it on the internet, but I was worried that it would just be a bit sad to read about someone who has ME and doesn’t get better. (This is also my fear about my memoir, incidentally). I was pleasantly surprised: it was like reading Bridget Jones, if Bridget Jones [...]

    15. I've had this book for a couple of years, but I kept putting off reading it-- in part, because she's one of those authors who doesn't use "quotation marks" (I hate that!); and partly because when I flipped it open to read random parts it seemed to be about boyfriend troubles (and that's not an issue in my life right now-- thank God!).But I picked it up recently and found myself strangely compelled to keep reading all 400+ pages (not in one sitting !). Once I got past the beginning and the chara [...]

    16. Nasim Marie Jafry's debut novel reads more like memoir, depicting a fifteen year period in the life a woman diagnosed with ME, a condition which also affects the author. Diagnosed in the '80s, Helen Fleet must deal with a medical community that knows so little about her condition that it's often dismissed as psychosomatic. While this book does a good job challenging that idea, it didn't feel bogged down with medical information.The novel is anything but plot driven. About a hundred pages in, I r [...]

    17. The State of Me follows Helen Fleet, a promising student at Glasgow University, whose studies are interrupted when she is diagnosed first with Coxsackie virus and then with ME. Based on her own experiences of having ME, Nasim writes beautifully and insightfully and with a great deal of humour and originality about how the illness affects Helen's life and relationships.The novel moves back and forth between Helen's first person narrative, third person narrative and internal dialogues:helen: What [...]

    18. Somehow, as I read this painful story about a victim of myalgic encephalomyelitis (ME), Nasmin managed to wrap her words around me and whisk me away on a merry dance. Almost against my will I realised that I was enjoying myself. I don't know how Nasim did it but it happened, time and time again, chapter after chapter.I know of many readers who are forever raving about how dialogue is what makes a book great but for me it is descriptiveness that brings the story alive. The prose in The State of m [...]

    19. The State of Me follows a 15 year span in the life of Helen Fleet. In 1993 Helen falls ill with symptoms that no doctor can explain. She has to leave university and return home to her mother’s house as her illness worsens. She is eventually diagnosed with M.E. (Myalgic Encephalomyeitis) and must face doctors disagreeing on whether it’s a real illness and how it should be treated. Based on Nasim Marie Jafry’s own experience with M.E The State of Me reads more like a memoir than fiction. May [...]

    20. I had been so excited to read this book! I was looking forward to hearing the story of CFS told through a dramatic narrative. I was hoping to find characters I could relate to. I was hoping this would be a book I could recommend, to help create awareness of CFS and what it's like to go through it. What I found instead was a trashy book with f-bombs scattered like land mines and a character that was not very appealing and difficult to care about. I read about 10% of this book, hoping it would get [...]

    21. I thought this book was excellent. It was really interesting to learn about ME, an illness I knew zero about when I picked this up and despite the serious subject matter, this was actually a joy to read. I found a lot to like and admire in the main character Helen and felt so much sympathy for her as she comes to terms with a condition that halts her life just as it was beginning. A genuine and immersive read, I can’t praise the author highly enough for her fantastic writing and I really hope [...]

    22. M.E sufferers vary from those able to hold down a part time job to those completely bedridden, but this is the account of a young girl whose contracts M.E and is very limited in her day to day activities, she shares her frustrations and worries with us but the book doesn't get too depressing. A good read for anyone who cares to know more about the disabling condition from the point of view of the sufferer.

    23. I really enjoyed this book, as someone who also suffers with a chronic illness, i found the writers portrayal of life with M.E. poignant, and incredibly realistic. I particularly enjoyed the descriptions of her relationships and how they were impacted by her illness. The writer really draws you into her world, and I would recommend it for anyone suffering with a chronic illness, or anyone who just wants to read an interesting book.

    24. This is an excellent book on what it's like to live with M.E. - the frustrations about not being able to do what you want, the general lack of support from the medical profession, the different responses from other people. Yet through it all, Helen Fleet manages to stay hopeful (most of the time) and celebrates her triumphs and successes, however small.

    25. Wow, just wow. I loved this book so much, even though it made me cry like a baby most of the time! It really felt like I was in Helen's shoes, fantastic writing

    26. As a patient myself, it was a book I can relate to. It really captures what it is to be living with this disease. I completely agree with the subtitle "everyday life shouldn't be this hard"

    27. Finally a book that addresses what it's really like to live with M.E. You'll get caught up in Helen's love live and learn a thing or two along the way!

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