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Shortlisted for the 2017 PEN Ackerley Prize
The thing to remember about this story is that every word is true. If I never told it to a soul, and this book did not exist, it would not cease to be true. I don t mind at all if you forget this.
The important thing is that I don t.
On a hot still morning on a beautiful beach in Jamaica, Decca Aitkenhead s life changed for ever.
Her four-year-old boy was paddling peacefully at the water s edge when a wave pulled him out to sea. Her partner, Tony, swam out and saved their son s life then drowned before her eyes.
When Decca and Tony first met a decade earlier, they became the most improbable couple in London. She was an award-winning Guardian journalist, famous for interviewing leading politicians. He was a dreadlocked criminal with a history of drug-dealing and violence. No one thought the romance would last, but it did. Until the tide swept Tony away, plunging Decca into the dark chasm of random tragedy.
Exploring race and redemption, privilege and prejudice, ALL AT SEA is a remarkable story of love and loss, of how one couple changed each other s lives and of what a sudden death can do to the people who survive.
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If I read a sadder, truer, wiser chapter in a book this year I will count myself fortunate ... Aitkenhead s loss was our gain The Times
An exemplary memoir ... However magnificent and powerful the book, you know it pales in comparison with the loss Sunday Times
This book is impossible to forget ... It reminds one that grief is about transformation, the loss of old moorings, a new permission to put the heart first- a sea change Observer
Astonishing.... Aitkenhead has produced a work of art Evening Standard
An extraordinary memoir, a beautifully written account of life, love and what is left of both after tragedy ...Utterly heart-breaking but it s also a brave and honest account of grief and its aftermath that will stay with you long after you finish the last page Daily Express
Finely observed, emotionally truthful and beautifully written, her memoir is testament to the extraordinary power of love that doesn t vanish when life of the beloved ends, but endures as long as memory itself Mail on Sunday
A story of absolute heartbreak, but also a story of unbelievable courage Davina McCall
An entrancing love story; a horrifying death story; a book about class, family, growing up, taking risks and learning how to be strong. Read it once, and it will be inside your head forever Andrew Marr
If you buy just one book this year, make it this one. I have never read anything like it and wished it would never end Jennifer Saunders
A brave book about emotional truth. It brought a tear to my eye, and will be deeply empowering for those who read it Tanya Byron
Anyone who has loved, lost or grieved that's all of us should read it. Alastair Campbell
A beautiful and painful guidebook through the taboo subject of death. Decca made me miss someone I've never met and, for today at least, savour those I love Russell Brand
A remarkable story of sudden tragedy and grief, of love and resilience Arianna Huffington
Beautiful Sunday Times--Observer About the Author:
Decca Aitkenhead is an award-winning journalist (Catherine Pakenham Award 1996, Interviewer of the Year in 2009) for The Guardian newspaper, where she interviews leading figures in public life. She was born in Wiltshire in 1971, and studied politics and modern history at Manchester University, where she began her career in journalism at the Manchester Evening News. She has been a columnist and features writer for most national newspapers and magazines, and a regular contributor to BBC radio and television. She lives in rural Kent with her two young sons. In 2000 she wrote a travel book, The Promised Land, about going around the world in search of perfect Ecstasy.
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Book Description Fourth Estate, 2016. Condition: Very Good. Former Library book. Great condition for a used book! Minimal wear. Seller Inventory # GRP93618049
Book Description Fourth Estate, 2016. Hardcover. Condition: GOOD. Spine creases, wear to binding and pages from reading. May contain limited notes, underlining or highlighting that does affect the text. Possible ex library copy, will have the markings and stickers associated from the library. Accessories such as CD, codes, toys, may not be included. Seller Inventory # 3337686289
Book Description Fourth Estate, 2016. Hardcover. Condition: Very Good. No Jacket. Former library book; May have limited writing in cover pages. Pages are unmarked. ~ ThriftBooks: Read More, Spend Less. Seller Inventory # G0008142149I4N10
Book Description Fourth Estate, 2016. Hardcover. Condition: Very Good. No Jacket. May have limited writing in cover pages. Pages are unmarked. ~ ThriftBooks: Read More, Spend Less. Seller Inventory # G0008142149I4N00
Book Description Fourth Estate, 2016. Hardcover. Condition: Very Good. Ships from the UK. Former Library book. Great condition for a used book! Minimal wear. Seller Inventory # GRP93618049
Book Description Fourth Estate, 2016. Hardcover. Condition: Good. Ships from the UK. Former Library book. Shows some signs of wear, and may have some markings on the inside. Seller Inventory # 18680143-20
Book Description Fourth Estate, 2016. Condition: Good. A+ Customer service! Satisfaction Guaranteed! Book is in Used-Good condition. Pages and cover are clean and intact. Used items may not include supplementary materials such as CDs or access codes. May show signs of minor shelf wear and contain limited notes and highlighting. Seller Inventory # 0008142149-2-4
Book Description Fourth Estate, 2016. Hardcover. Condition: Good. Good condition is defined as: a copy that has been read but remains in clean condition. All of the pages are intact and the cover is intact and the spine may show signs of wear. The book may have minor markings which are not specifically mentioned. Most items will be dispatched the same or the next working day. Seller Inventory # wbb0016245919
Book Description Fourth Estate, 2016. Condition: Very Good. 1608312478. Seller Inventory # U9780008142148
Book Description Fourth Estate 07/04/2016, 2016. Condition: Good. Will be shipped promptly from UK warehouse. Book is in good condition with no missing pages, no damage or soiling and tight spine. There may be some dog-eared pages showing previous use but overall a great book. Seller Inventory # 9053-9780008142148