Reader Rachel Foster recently devoured Sophie Mei Lan's autobiography. Here's what she had to say about the book...
REVIEW: EAT, SLEEP, CONTROL, REPEAT by Sophie Mei Lan
Sophie’s life story is truly astonishing. From start to finish, you wonder how she has fit so much into such a short space of time. She has danced, appeared on TV, studied journalism, and raised two children, all whilst battling with her mental health and with curved balls constantly thrown at her from all angles.
Her story is totally unexpected, if you don’t know her background and you've simply been enticed by the book's lovely pink cover. Beware: it’s not for the faint-hearted. However, I'm sure it's an inspiring read for those who have struggled with eating disorders, people who have experienced bullying, or survivors of the School of Hard Knocks.
‘Eat. Sleep. Control. Repeat.’ is not a tale of survival in the business world of a high powered
executive nor a tutorial on how easy it is to swan around in a suit, hiring and firing. The truth is the ‘control,’ which cuts through in a different way. Sophie developed an eating disorder and put incredible pressure on herself via her ‘inner bully'. She is certainly not alone in suffering this awful, debilitating illness.
Sophie was a semi-finalist on Britain’s Got Talent in 2008; she performed a sensational belly-dancing
routine that was well received and popular. What also surfaced, however, was inevitable trolling and negative comments that fuelled her bulimia.
From the outside, no one would know this, which is the power of her story. Every
person you see may be suffering terribly and, behind the scenes, may be falling apart. The bullying Sophie suffered at school also had a knock-on effect. The most startling elements about Sophie's book are her honesty, her no-holds-barred way of storytelling, and the strength she has displayed throughout some harrowing events. In places, this makes reading difficult; that said, it was worth pushing through to discover how her life progressed.
Sophie is now a successful journalist and documentary maker. She makes readers feel everything she has endured, through her compelling writing. Her drive to succeed is nothing short of inspirational.
From humble beginnings, she remains a fighter through and through, to her success
as a journalist and the birth of her two children. The pain she has gone through is felt by the reader in every word, and you feel both empathy and bewilderment that so much can happen to
one person - who, on the outside, seems like she has it all boxed off.
Her journey is incredible, in terms of her uphill struggle and how she has thrived against all odds. Sophie's brutal honesty and sharing of her personal nightmares with such candour will no doubt help other mental health sufferers. Her commitment to helping others through her mental health vlogs is amazing, as is the courage she showed after a sexual assault.
An inspirational tale and a 'must read' for anyone who has gone through traumatic times. Your inner
strength will be bolstered just from reading it.