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Notes From The North Pole

A Collection Of Poetry, Prose And Songs

Emily Maguire is a talented singer songwriter and musician, who hails from the UK, although she has also spent time living in a shack in the Australian outback, making cheese.

Back in 2010, she released her first book, Start Over Again, the title taken from her song and album of the the same time. This release coincided with her making the decision to go public about something very personal; she has Bipolar Disorder. Reading the book gave a huge insight into her as a person, her as a singer and musician and her as a writer. Suddenly so many songs took on a whole new meaning. More than just that though, it gave me a deeper insight into people I know and work with. You have to respect anyone brave enough to share their story to help us understand others.

More recently, Emily has just released her second book, the intriguingly named Notes From The North Pole. Of its title, she has said, "The title Notes From The North Pole is a pun on bipolar - I imagined the North Pole as being the depressive end of the cycle." She chose pieces of writing that conveyed the thoughts and feelings She has about being bipolar and, above all, being someone determined to make the most of her life.

In many ways, this sums Emily Maguire; despite all the ups and downs, she is bubbly, full of life,with a smile that lights up a room and laughter that is infectious. She makes people around her feel good and cares about those she meets along the way. She adores what she does, enjoyment which radiates from her when she is onstage.

She didn't have an easy time in the couple of years before the release of this new book, but perhaps had that not been the case, we wouldn't be reading the book now. It is above all else, honest and from her heart; at times uncomfortable to read, yet compelling and fascinating at the same time.

A collection of song lyrics, poems and prose, it communicates the experience of day to day life with bi polar. I know we hear it referred to as 'a roller coaster,' but here that is laid bare for all to see, it's all its ups and downs. At times, as you would expect, it is moving and sad. Other parts are simply exquisite writing and some parts can't help but make you smile. It is thought provoking and real.

Emily has always, i feel, taken what could be a big negative and instead been very positive about her bi polar. She has often said she wouldn't change it as she knows that without it, she wouldn't write as she does. This book also shows the positive side of her experiences and shows that no matter what bumps we encounter, as we all will, we will find the light on the other side.

Emily also has a new CD out in February, titled A Little Bit of Blue, and gigs around the country coming up. Not to be missed.

Helen Mitchell

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