Wednesday 23 January 2019

How To Hold A Grudge by Sophie Hannah @sophiehannahCB1 @HodderBooks #HowToHoldAGrudge

What if grudges are not just good for us but great?
How often have you held a grudge and felt guilty about it? 'Forgive and move on' is the received wisdom, and that's what many of us try to do.
Positive thinking is essential for a happy life, but how we get to that positive is even more crucial.
What if grudges can ward off danger, and help us live better lives?
What if they can act as stepping stones, pointing us in the right direction?
This ultimate guide will give you all the tools you need to analyse, process and embrace your grudges in order to be your best possible self.
** How to Hold a Grudge - The Podcast now available for download! Check out Grudge of the Week, and discover the latest Grudge Music **

How To Hold a Grudge by Sophie Hannah was published by Hodder & Stoughton on 1 November 2018.

I was intrigued when I heard about this book. I met Sophie Hannah at the Harrogate Crime Festival last July, in the bar one evening and she told me about it then. I thought about it for a long time afterwards and was determined that I would read it once it was published.

I hold grudges.  I do, and I always have. I'm not bitter, or toxic, although I'm often grumpy and bad tempered. However, I'm usually quite pleasant and cheerful. I like to meet new people and I think I open up pretty quickly. However, if someone does something that hurts me, I'll remember. I may forgive, in a fashion, but I'll always remember. I will always be wary of it happening again.

Thank goodness for this book. Sophie Hannah has reassured me that it's OK to hold a grudge. In fact, it's perfectly healthy, as long as you have some processes in place. As long as you don't let your grudges eat you up and make you into a bitter person who never smiles and never trusts anyone again.

Sophie Hannah doesn't claim to be a psychologist. She doesn't claim that any of her strategies and teachings in this book are 'written in stone, and will work for everyone'. What she does do is explain how grudge-holding works for her.  She has worked with two experienced therapists whilst writing the book; Helen Acton is a BACP and UKCP-registered existential psychotherapist in private practice and Anne Grey is a practitioner of Emotional Freedom Therapy, a fellow of The Healer Foundation and a council member of the BCMA. Their ideas and thoughts are a great addition to this book, and go a long way to affirming what the author says.

How To Hold A Grudge is written with wit and humour. The author admits to her own grudges and explains them with various carat ratings, enabling the reader to get to know the author a little.

The author talks about a Grudge Cabinet, and for me, this was the most influential part of the book; I do have a 'fuck it bucket' and now I have a 'grudge cabinet', they sit nicely alongside each other.
Who knew that there were so many types of grudges?  There are, and when you read through the definitions, they really do make sense. We can grade our grudges, we can sift out the bad and invalid grudges and we can manage our very own 'grudget'.  Finally we are advised how to become a responsible grudge holder.

At the end of the book, the author has provided lots of examples of other people's grudges. She collected these after calling out on Twitter, and some of them are cringeworthy and many of them are sad.

I read this book over a few weeks. Picking it up every now and again. It's an interesting read and lots of it makes sense. You don't have to take any notice; you may not agree that anyone should hold a grudge, but it's certainly fascinating to read how the author deals with the subject.

Sophie Hannah is an internationally bestselling crime fiction writer. Her crime novels have been translated into 34 languages and published in 51 countries. Her psychological thriller The Carrier won the Specsavers National Book Award for Crime Thriller of the Year in 2013. In 2014 and 2016, Sophie published The Monogram Murders and Closed Casket, the first new Hercule Poirot mysteries since Agatha Christie's death, both of which were national and international bestsellers.

Sophie’s novels The Point of Rescue and The Other Half Lives have been adapted for television as Case Sensitive, starring Olivia Williams and Darren Boyd. Sophie is also a bestselling poet who has been shortlisted for the TS Eliot award. Her poetry is studied at GCSE and A-level throughout the UK.  Sophie is an Honorary Fellow of Lucy Cavendish College, Cambridge. She lives in Cambridge with her husband, two children and dog.

Sophie's website is, and you can follow her on Twitter at @sophiehannahcb1

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