‘The wisdom and knowledge in this seemingly simple book sneaks up on the reader. Initially one would not think that such a depth of insight could be infused in a picture book. However, it can be likened to a printed version of a TED Talk. It engages the reader more and more with each page until in the end the reader realizes they want to read it again because it contains so much useful information in such an easily accessible manner.’

David Berceli, Ph.D. Creator of Tension & Trauma Releasing Exercises (TRE). Author of The Revolutionary Trauma Release Process.


‘With this straightforward, smart, and visually rich book, Steve Haines has done a huge service to people by helping them to better map their bodies, resolve fear of movement, and to find their way out of pain. This book is incredibly easy to follow, but doesn’t dumb down pain science in the least. Understanding what pain is is a crucial part of healing, and this succinct and wonderfully illustrated book is the perfect resource for educating people about why they experience pain, and how they can ‘unlearn’ it. I can’t wait to give this book to all of my clients and to recommend it to all of my listeners. Whether you are a person suffering with chronic pain, or a teacher or practitioner who wants to better understand pain in the context of your work, read this book. It is a tremendous resource.’ 

Brooke Thomas, Certified Rolfer, movement educator, and creator of the Liberated Body Podcast.


‘The brainchild of Steve Haines, this is an examination of the nature of pain in illustrated format. In this short, research based graphic novel illustrated by Sophie Standing (who is also part of the creative collective DOSED) we can observe how strange pain really is and presents an amazing new approach to deal with this pain. With outstanding and humorous artwork by Sophie they have created an educational tool for the healthcare professionals, chiropractors, shiatsu practitioners and therapists.’


‘Steve and Sophie have done an extraordinary thing: they have managed to make pain beautiful and interesting. If you want to really understand your relationship with pain and be thoroughly entertained at the same time then this is the book for you.’

Fred Deakin, Professor of Interactive Digital Arts at University of the Arts London, half of the band Lemon Jelly, and founder and director of Airside design agency.


‘This seemingly innocuous picture book on pain is so much more. Steve Haines has compiled a brilliant little volume of insights. Its colorful images evoke in us the playful and open response we need to unlearn long-held beliefs, while the rich scientific information dissembles, piece by piece, the way we’ve come to think about pain as a culture. Haines takes the next step, too; he doesn’t leave us wondering what to do next, but offers practical tools we can use to rewire the mind-body circuits that experience and respond to pain. This tiny book packs a powerful punch.’

Bo Forbes, Psy.D., Psychologist, Yoga Teacher, and Author of Yoga for Emotional Balance.


‘Pain Is Really Strange is a revelation. I have been actively managing multiple health conditions for over 20 years. In his book, Steve unpacks information about our brains, nerves, and body memories, sketching out a framework, which has presented me with a new, insightful perspective on my pain/health/medical issues. He differentiates different types of pain and eloquently articulates bits of information I have encountered over the years but not been able to join up. I shall re-read it often as a touchstone. Brilliant!’

Craig Givens, Someone who manages more pain than he likes.

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