It’s New Year’s Eve, and Beth plans to spend a whole year alone, in her snug, safe house. But she has reckoned without floppy-eared, tail-wagging Mouse, who comes nosing to her window. Followed shortly by his owner, Alice. As Beth’s year of solitude rolls out, Alice gently steals her way first into Beth’s house and later into her heart. And by the time New Year’s Eve comes round again – who knows?
A tender and delicate love story in verse, The Space Between is a tale of how warmth, support and friendship can overcome mental anguish.
PRAISE FOR THE SPACE BETWEEN
Shortlisted for the Children’s Books Ireland Book of the Year Awards 2018
Shortlisted for the Great Reads Award 2018
‘Meg Grehan has written a fearlessly honest account of love: beautifully crafted and elegantly told’- Brian Conaghan, author of Costa Children’s Book Award winner
The Bombs That Brought Us Together
‘Artful, compelling and above all true’ – Deirdre Sullivan, author of Needlework
‘A sensitive exploration of mental illness and new love between two young women. Beautifully written, this is a story that captures and holds the reader from start to finish … Language is rich and accessible and the storytelling is exquisitely crafted… A superb debut novel from an author who is definitely one to watch out for.’ – School Library Association Magazine July 2017
‘Absolutely breathtaking’ – Jacq Murphy, Eason Booksellers
‘Grehan is a poet, a romantic and at the same time a realist. She’s a talented writer and, above all, she’s a strong Irish voice crafting beautiful, important stories about mental illness and the lives of LGBT people.This stunning debut is sure to make waves upon its release and I for one can’t wait to read more of her work.’ – The Arcade
‘Gorgeous crumbs of consciousness each poem. And the story, and the ending… I love Beth’s story with Alice. It’s raw and romantic.’ – Olivia Hope, author
‘The style of the writing sits perfectly with the state of Beth’s mind, and the ebb and flow of the text, the repetitions, and even the layout of the words on the page all combined to make it a beautiful reading experience… it gave me such an immediately intimate feeling, almost like I was snooping on Beth’s personal life, that I found that I was caught up in the book straight away.’ – The Bookbag
‘This is a beautiful book in so many ways. The cover is gorgeous, and sets the tone for the book. The Space Between is a tender love story; quiet, emotional and moving. Grehan really conveys Beth’s anxiety and the ways in which her phobias trap and restrict her… It is always good to see more LGBTQ love stories out there, particularly one portrayed in such a positive light… Above all, this is a beautifully written work. Even in the third person, we get right inside Beth’s head. The poems bring us right into her consciousness, and they flow beautifully.’ – Jenny Duffy, bookseller and reviewer (read the full review here)
‘The Space Between is extraordinary. Grehan’s work asks us to consider not only the space between words, but also the spaces between people. Grehan’s turn of phrase makes Beth’s voice believable and easy to relate to; it’s also a superb choice for reluctant readers. It is a story of discovering hope in others, fighting fears and growing to challenge them’ – Inis, the magazine of Children’s Books Ireland
‘A tale of redemption through love; a beguiling read for anyone who suffers depressive illness, or who wants to understand it better.’ – Sue Leonard, The Irish Examiner
‘Pleasantly claustrophobic and deeply atmospheric, this bowled me over’ – Gay Community News
‘It’s a sensitively told and lovely story, mostly light but touching on some heavy topics. The format allows the reader complete intimacy with Beth’s thoughts, which are often difficult to read, but if her anxiety is intense then so, too, is the gentle blossoming of her love for Alice, for Mouse, and for the potential of the world outside her front door. Quirky, sweet, and beautiful.’ – Sarah Likes Books Blog
‘Meg Grehan’s debut novel offers an honest and tender chronicle of new love between two young women and explores the complexities of sustaining mental health in contemporary society. The story ebbs and flows and is enhanced by intriguing layout of text which expresses the tumult of the protagonist’s life and experiences. Skilfully rendered in verse and elegantly written and presented, Grehan’s narrative is a significant new addition to Irish children’s literature.’ – Judges at the Children’s Books Ireland Awards
Cover design by Paula McGloin.