The Girl With Nine Wigs: A Memoir by Sophie van der Stap

‘It’s Saturday and everything is different. No, I didn’t go to the market this morning and I didn’t have my usual coffee on Westerstraat. And no, I wasn’t getting ready for a new semester at college. Next Monday, January 31st, I have to admit myself at the hospital for my first chemotherapy session. For the next two months, I’m expected each week for a fresh shot of vincristine, etoposide, ifosfamide and loads more exciting abracadabra.’

Sophie is twenty-one when she is diagnosed with a rare, aggressive form of cancer. A striking, fun-loving student, her world is reduced overnight to the sterile confines of a hospital. But within these walls Sophie discovers a whole new world of white coats, gossiping nurses, and sexy doctors; of shared rooms, hair loss, and eyebrow pencils.

As wigs become a crucial part of Sophie’s new life, she reclaims a sense of self-expression. Each of Sophie’s nine wigs makes her feel stronger and gives her a distinct personality, and that is why each has its own name: Stella, Sue, Daisy, Blondie, Platina, Uma, Pam, Lydia, and BebĂ©. There’s a bit of Sophie in all of them, and they reveal as much as they hide. Sophie is determined to be much more than a cancer patient.

With refreshing candor and a keen eye for the absurd, Sophie van der Stap’s The Girl With Nine Wigs makes you smile when you least expect it.