About my books




We have more time than ever: each of us can expect a thousand months on this planet, if we’re lucky. We can also do more in that time than anyone could possibly hope for. Yet we feel time-poor.

This is because our world is addicted to fast and we have become its servant. Instead of grasping the liberating potential of technology, many of us are stuck in a doomed race to outpace hurry.

In this book I combine cutting-edge research from neuroscience and psychology with stories ranging from Leonardo da Vinci to Anna Winter, Kant to Keith Richards, to reveal timeless truths about humanity’s finest invention and how it shapes our lives. I look at why busyness is so addictive and how to seize the freedoms of a world without limits — by setting your own. Discover the new rules for navigating this fast-forward world, for decluttering your day, as well as answers to the questions that productivity guides ignore. Such as:

  • How do bright colours, fast food and rapid breathing affect our tempo?
  • Why do some hours trudge whilst others sprint by — especially when you would rather they?
  • How can you reset your body clock?
  • What hours suit which activities best?

So stop clock-watching and quit chasing white rabbits. Rediscover how time can be your servant.

On Time is available at all good booksellers and at Amazon.


‘I loved this scholarly, elegant and witty book. Blyth has that rare gift for being both erudite and accessible, mingling fascinating philosophical and scientific ideas with hard data and personal wisdom. I was intrigued, challenged, informed – and at times deeply moved by the warmth and sincerity which underpins the author’s learning. This is a marvellous work – and one which has surely never been more timely.’ Sarah Perry, author of The Essex Serpent

‘This truly extraordinary book can genuinely elongate your life, or at least allow you to achieve hugely more in your allotted lifespan. Funny, informative, quirky and brilliantly written, it is somehow also very wise in a profoundly philosophical way, The Storm of Warwith insights from every part of human existence from King Harold to Mark Carney. Find the time to read it, and you’ll discover where more time – and ultimately also happiness – can be found’
Professor Andrew Roberts, author of The Storm of War

‘On Time is spot on. Practical and yet profound, it is rich in ideas and a rallying cry to anyone in thrall to being busy and in a hurry’ Julia Hobsbawm, Hon. Visiting Professor, Cass Business School and University of Suffolk, author of Fully Connected

‘An addictive blend of philosophy, psychology and science that tackles today’s most pressing issue how to manage, savour and expand our time.’ Jane Thynne, author of Solitaire

‘A rare find; a book which beautifully mixes a reflective, personal chronicle with a smart, insightful reading of cultural history. A rich, deft work.’ Tristram Hunt,  author of Ten Cities that Made an Empire

‘This is a beautiful, thoughtful book about time… I can’t think of the last time I read a book that not only engaged me, but also made me think about my own behavior and gave me some meaningful strategies for ways I might change.’ Professor Sophie Scott, Deputy Director, Institute of Cognitive Neuroscience, University College London

‘Few books are truly life-changing. On Time is. Catherine Blyth is wise, witty and a very good writer. To find out more, you will have to read her brilliant book.’ Rachel Kelly, author of Black Rainbow



Without conversation, we are less than ourselves. But its skills only come through practice. As studies have found, the single most important factor in a child’s life – and the only one that can predict its future educational attainment – is not the girth of his parents’ wage packet or the size of their house but the amount of words to which a child is exposed. And throughout life, conversation fires our minds and hearts, flexing the muscles we most need in these fast-moving days.

Like any other art, conversation can be done better or worse. I wrote this book because I wanted to know how. And it was a great excuse to salute some of history’s great and terrible talkers.



Available at Amazon.co.uk, Amazon.com, Barnes and Noble, Borders, IndieBound.com, and Penguin.com.

Praise for The Art of Conversation:

‘Get off that bloody computer and read this bloody great book. Reclaim the orgasmic pleasures of a bloody good conversation. Don’t let modern technology turn you into an uncommunicative ninny: ingest this book and start conversing…and then start living.’ – Simon Doonan, author of Eccentric Glamour

‘Some of the best ideas are the simplest, and there could hardly be a simpler or better one than this… This is a witty, charming and appropriately garrulous book, drawing on authorities as diverse as Aristotle, Cicero, Voltaire, Tommy Cooper and talk show host Tyra Banks… This smart little book should be placed in every house, like Gideon Bibles in hotel rooms, to turn us once again into a nation of good talkers.’ – Peter Bradshaw, Mail on Sunday

‘A bit of fun by a young genius. The Art of Conversation by Catherine Blyth is a witty meditation upon all aspects of talk. If you give it to a friend it will itself provoke hours of amusing chat as you read out her jokes and her wisdom.’ – A.N. Wilson, Reader’s Digest

‘It is a treasure trove of literary and historical delights, with each page containing a little gem in the form of a quotation or a factoid… I can imagine The Art of Conversation becoming a film in the same way that Stephen Potter’s One-Upmanship books became School For Scoundrels. In the meantime, people will buy it for the same reason they buy all books: to give themselves something to talk about.’ ― Toby Young, Independent on Sunday

‘Modern man – and woman – have forgotten how to engage larynx and ears. Catherine Blyth teaches the lost art with wit and charm.’ – Harry Mount, author of Amo, Amas, Amat

‘Take the wittiest, most spellbinding dinner companion and put her between book covers; that’s The Art of Conversation by Catherine Blyth. … By turns arch, humane, historical, and hysterically funny, she’s the person you hope you’ll find at the next cocktail party―or the person you’d like to be.’ – Margaret Shepherd, author of The Art of Civilized Conversation

‘A witty and thoroughly entertaining guide to the noble art of conversation.’ – Katie Hickman, author of The Aviary Gate

‘Wittily mixing up philosophy with literature, blending science with psychology, Blyth persuasively argues the case for banter and badinage – it’s free, its fun and it gets your brain cells firing like the prettiest of firework displays.’ – Eithne Farry, Marie Claire

‘Blyth is a passionate talker, and here she takes us on an entertaining tour of the art of proper conversation…you’ll never be at a loss for words at those awkward socials again!’ ― Glamour

‘It’s fun, it’s fresh and it’s flirty – all the things it teaches that we can be, if only we master the art of conversation’ ― The Resident

‘Brings a professional sensibility to the topic’ ― Scotland on Sunday

‘As Woodrow Wilson once opined of the US President Warren Harding, I am simply in possession of ‘a bungalow mind’. I hope that reading The Art of Conversation has furnished me with a staircase or two’ ― Observer



THE ART OF MARRIAGE is an entertaining survivor’s guide to the mysterious world of marriage.  Why on earth do we voluntarily embark on a three-legged race through life?  And how can we navigate the obstacles, and keep it fun, until death do us part?
With stories from history, insights from psychology, and tales from those who have made marriage work for better — or worse. 
‘**** In this witty book, Catherine Blyth – no sentimentalist – freewheels across history, sociology and literature, and makes a fresh case for matrimony as the best vessel in which to navigate the stormy seas of life.’ — Sunday Telegraph
‘It’s fun to read something which leaps about in lively fashion from Darwin’s list of pros and cons of marrying to the ‘things I hate about you’ lists that Anthony Armstrong-Jones left about the house for Princess Margaret. What struck me above all is how good a writer Blyth is with her wry, wise and lyrical style. This led me to wonder when that novel so obviously trying to get out of her will see the light of day.’ — Wendy Holden, Daily Mail
‘This is an upmarket guide to marriage. It’s very good. It tells you some obvious things, and lots of things that are less obvious. For instance: don’t pick your nose in front of your spouse. That’s obvious. But why? Because it suggests that you no longer want them to fancy you. That’s less obvious. And it tells you something else: that relationships are nuanced affairs. “Sex trouble is almost inevitable,” she says. Then there are children. Parenthood “does not always draw couples close”. She’s interesting on adultery. When marriage was about “maintaining patrimony”, adultery was sometimes tolerated. Now it’s about love, it isn’t.’ — William Leith, Evening Standard

‘Written with a mixture of humour and historical perspective’ — Daily Telegraph  

‘Lots of pithy and profound advice’ — Time Out


3 responses to “About my books

  1. fawngilmorekraut

    Wow. I guess I have just struck gold here. As a relationship coach and English teacher, it appears I MUST read both these books. So glad I found you!

  2. alex

    Hello Catherine,

    I have never grinned, smiled or laughed so much reading any other book as the Art of Conversation. You can imagine someone reading and laughing while travelling to work on a crowded metro subway train.
    Got a great beginning to my day reading your work.

    A big thank you

  3. Hi there, You have done a fantastic job. I will definitely digg it and personally
    recommend to my friends. I am sure they will be benefited from this

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s