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Imprint: Profile Books
Pages: 352
Subject: Science & Mathematics


Narcolepsy, Neuroscience and the Search for a Good Night

Henry Nicholls

An examination of sleep from the perspective of a narcoleptic

9781781255872 (1 Mar 2018)

About the book

When Henry Nicholls was twenty-one, he was diagnosed with narcolepsy: a medical disorder causing him to fall asleep with no warning. For the healthy but overworked majority, this might sound like an enviable condition, but for Henry, the inability to stay awake is profoundly disabling, especially as it is accompanied by mysterious collapses called cataplexy, poor night-time sleep, hallucinations and sleep paralysis.

A writer and biologist, Nicholls explores the science of disordered sleep, discovering that around half of us will experience some kind of sleep dysfunction in our lives. From a CBT course to tackle insomnia to a colony of narcoleptic Dobermans, his journey takes him through the half-lit world of sleep to genuine revelations about his own life and health.

Told with humour and intelligence, Sleepyhead uses personal reflections, interviews with those with sleep disorders and the people who study them, anecdotes from medical history and insights from art and literature to change the way we understand our sleeping hours.

About the author

Henry Nicholls is a science journalist, specialising in evolutionary biology and conservation, and is a regular contributor to New Scientist, Nature, BBC Focus and BBC Wildlife. He writes a regular column for BBC Earth and the Guardian, and is the author of three books: Lonesome George, The Way of the Panda and The Galapagos (also published by Profile).Find him on Twitter @WayOfThePanda


Praise for Henry Nicholls: brilliantly clear and enthusiastic...Henry Nicholls manages to combine detail with passion

- David Shukman, BBC

Expertly weaves anecdote and science

- Tom Whipple, The Times

Nicholls' passion for his subject and sense of humour are always evident

- Paul Chambers, The Times Literary Supplement

The most in-depth and accessible insight into narcolepsy that I've come across.

- Dan Collins, Fresh Tracks

what good science writing is all about - explanation through a ripping narrative.

- Steve Connor, The Independent

Additional Information

Imprint: Profile Books
Pages: 352
Subject: Science & Mathematics

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