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Katie Piper's story: her rise to fame

The Strictly Come Dancing star is an inspiration to many

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Ainhoa Barcelona
Ainhoa BarcelonaContent Managing Editor
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She's an author, a TV presenter, a model and a philanthropist, but fans have been seeing a different side to Katie Piper recently – as a dancer! The star is taking part in this year's series of Strictly Come Dancing, paired up with Gorka Marquez. Katie rose to fame over a decade ago, after bravely overcoming a horrific acid attack plotted by her ex-boyfriend. She has been helping fellow burn victims through her charity, the Katie Piper Foundation, and has also written about her journey in her books and autobiography. Read on for Katie's rise to fame…

Katie Piper's autobiography and books

Katie has come through the darkest of times and has undergone 250 operations since her acid attack. She was left partially blind in one eye and with severe burns, for which she still receives treatment. Ever the optimist, Katie has opened up about her struggles in her best-selling autobiography, Beautiful, which was published in 2011. Following the success of her book, she released a series of self-help books titled Things Get Better: If you believe then you will survive and Start Your Day with Katie, followed by her second autobiography, Beautiful Ever After. Her latest book Confidence: the Secret, was released in 2016. The inspirational author also starred in a documentary about her experience, Katie: My Beautiful Face, which aired in 2009 and scored a BAFTA nomination.

Katie Piper's charitable work

Katie waived her right to remain anonymous following her attack so that she could raise awareness for burn victims, and the treatment they go through. She set up her charity, the Katie Piper Foundation, in 2009. Simon Cowell is patron of the foundation, as is Katie's surgeon, Dr. Mohammad Ali Jawad.

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Katie Piper's family life

Although she keeps her private life out of the public eye, Katie has opened up about her husband and her two children. She is married to Richard James Sutton and the couple share daughters Belle and Penelope. Speaking about the early days of their relationship, Katie previously told MailOnline: "James was chatty, witty and looked me squarely in the eye. He never once mentioned my burns, and because he didn't, I didn't either." She added: "He didn't even stare at them, so I didn't feel self-conscious. He had me relaxed and buzzing with confidence."

Speaking to HELLO!, Katie, who gave birth to baby Penelope in December 2017, said: "Belle is such a great little helper, bringing me nappies and asking lots of questions. I feel completely fulfilled having our two girls and think they're enough." She added: "I think the loveliest time in our house is probably a Sunday, because usually I don't work, my husband doesn't work, Belle's at home and we're all together enjoying each other's company. But it's not necessarily the quietest time. I think the quietest time would be on a Sunday, once she's had her bath and gone to bed and it's grown up time."

katie piper strictly come dancing exclusive© Photo: HELLO!

Katie is taking part in this year's Strictly

Katie Piper on Strictly

Katie has been paired up with Gorka on this year's Strictly. The mother-of-two recently spoke to HELLO! about why she decided to join the competition, saying that even though she isn't the world's best dancer, she already feels like a winner. "Post my trauma and having babies, any mum will tell you that you never feel quite the same afterwards. If I'm able to make these changes and have fun along the way then in my eyes I've won," she said.

"I took part in Strictly as I knew I still had areas in my life where I don't feel as free and confident and this is one of them. I wanted to use the show as a tool to learn how to let go and feel sexy. I used to feel like this some years ago and would like to get a small bit of it back." She added: "Dancing definitely doesn't come naturally to me but it's about letting go and enjoying yourself and that's what I did at my wedding and now on Strictly but this time in front of millions."

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