The Tiger Who Sleeps Under My Chair

Publisher: Head of Zeus

This intriguing, powerful story for older readers follows two timelines - in Victorian England, young Emma Linden, who dreams of following in the footsteps of her hero, fossil-hunter Mary Anning; and animal-lover Rosie Linden, her great, great granddaughter, who has a restless mind and an inexplicable need to protect those around her. 

In 1884, Emma's brother James begins to suffer from poor mental health following an obsession with a taxidermy tiger in a museum. The children move to their grand family home in the countryside to rest - but at night, James roams the land alone and appears the following morning curled up and covered in dirt and leaves under Emma's chair.

Meanwhile, in 2023, Jude's dream of being a football star are dashed when he's dropped from the school team - but on the very same day he encounters Rosie, who has been missing for several days, and makes a decision which will affect the rest of their lives.

Can Rosie and Jude uncover the secrets of Emma and James all those years ago - and does tiger blood run in Rosie's veins, too?

Each of the two storylines sensitively explores mental health and the changing attitudes of the time - from the Victorian theories and limited treatment which saw many people treated badly, to our understanding and knowledge about conditions such as psychosis and epilepsy today. Two of the key characters in the book are in a position where they need to care for a friend with poor mental health, and a fascinating Q&A on mental health with author Hannah Foley in the back of the book looks at how we can support people experiencing mental health difficulties, which is sure to generate lots of discussion. 

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