In My Skin

Right now, her reading material of choice is a novel by Australian author Kate Holden, In My Skin, the true story of a life on the streets as a heroin addict and prostitute. Pink describes it as not as “acid trippy” as Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, but interesting nevertheless. “I’ve been learning about Australia through it – like which areas I should probably not go to.” PINK, singer

In My Skin is my first book, which I began writing during my grad dip in writing and which was published by Text Publishing in 2005. It’s about the five years in my life when I was a sex worker and a heroin user in Melbourne, a work I wrote as honestly, openly and authentically as I could.

It got a lot of media attention here, and I have done many interviews, some of which are linked to on this site. It also won praise from reviewers. My family and I featured on an episode of the tv program Australian Story (ABC) about our experiences during the time of my addiction. The book was published in eleven countries, I did three overseas book tours to promote it, and it has changed my life.

It was published in August 2005 by Text Publishing, reprinted five times in 2005-6. Also published in the USA, the UK, Finland, Germany, The Netherlands, the Czech Republic, Turkey, Brazil, France and Italy. Re-released in Australia 2007.

Shortlisted for Nita B. Kibble Dobbie Award (Best Debut) 2005; Australian Bookseller and Publisher Awards (Best New-comer) 2006. Listed in Books Alive Great Read promotion in 2006; publicly voted one of the State Library of Victoria’s top 5 ‘The Summer Read’ titles in 2007/8. Chosen as reading material for Melbourne/Glasgow ‘Two Books, Two Cities’ CAE program 2009.

Basically, it’s just a cracking great read and I encourage everyone to buy a copy. Of course, I’d say that.

This is what others said:

‘Verdict—better than sex.’ Canberra City News

‘Her vivid narrative voice lends a gritty poetry to her tale of heroin addiction, half-hearted rehab and prostitution.’ Observer

‘Compelling reading.’ The Monthly

‘Quite simply in a class of its own.’ Guardian

‘Her story resists the obvious clichés. It confounds and surprises and challenges preconceived ideas.’ Courier-Mail

‘Her talents as a prostitute won her a large clientele.  So should her talents as a writer.’ Independent

‘Subtle and elegant.’ Kirkus

‘A hard book to put down.’ Advertiser

‘Confessional sex-and-redemption books are practically a dime a dozen nowadays, so it’s good to be able to recommend one that is genuinely worth reading. A fresh insight into social stigma.’ New Weekly

‘Brave, explicit and extremely well written.’ ABR

‘So much more intriguing than the wastrel norm.’ Globe and Mail

An academic essay on drugs, sex and urban space in In My Skin and Christos Tsiolkas’s Loaded, by Anna Dunkley, 2011

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