Fire on All Sides
By James Rhodes
For many of us who suffer from depression or anxiety, the simple act of endurance, of having to appear 'normal', is a daunting, painful and heroic task. Getting out of bed, packing the kids off to school, showing up for work, preparing dinner... These can be astonishing achievements when it sometimes takes a superhuman effort simply to stand upright. How do you keep going? How do you do what you do, day in, day out, conforming to people's idea of you and functioning in the way society expects you to, when all you want to do is disappear and hide?In Fire On All Sides, Rhodes attempts to find how to make the unbearable bearable in the most exposing circumstances imaginable. As he embarks on a gruelling five-month concert tour, performing in front of thousands of people, the tortuous voices in his mind his constant companions, he has no choice but to face these wild, mad ramblings head on. Luckily, there is the music. There is always the music. Bach, Chopin, Beethoven - they are his holy grail, his mechanism for survival. Just.This is an important, urgent book. It's about going through your day feeling like you can't find a way out of the crazy, it's about not setting the happiness bar too high, it's about accepting the messy imperfection that is life.Rhodes explodes the myths surrounding depression, anxiety and stress - the plagues of our society - into a million pieces, then sticks them back together again with his characteristic thought-provoking, laser sharp and humorous style. The really good news? It's going to be OK. Just.
Feeling is the Thing that Happens in 1000th of a Second
By Christian Ryan
LONGLISTED FOR THE WILLIAM HILL SPORTS BOOK OF THE YEAR 2017'Exquisite' Gideon Haigh'Magical, a head rush, a marvel' Rahul Bhattacharya'Startlingly original' Matthew EngelIn 1975 Patrick Eagar took some photographs which were unlike any cricket photographs anyone had seen before.It was the summer of an Ashes and a World Cup (cricket's first), a near last-gasp summer before revolution when cricket was still a sport of helmetless faces and green fields with no advertising paint on them. A clamour of rare glamour descended on England: Thommo and D.K., baby-cheeked Viv Richards, careworn David Steele, lithe supercat Clive Lloyd, the Chappell brothers, Andy Roberts, Tony Greig, Doug Walters, trails of cigarette smoke gusting in his wake. From this raw material, a thirty-one-year-old with an expired Sports Illustrated subscription and a love of long lenses found something almost magical. Eagar's pictures reveal that "feeling is the thing that happens in 1000th of a second". So this is a cricket book about photography and what it can do - tell the future and show human beings in ways not available to our eyes. It is part detective story, (and reconstruction of one of cricket's greatest summers), part biography, part wild-roaming conversation, part essay on the power of the image, myth and reality. It shows Christian Ryan as one of the most elegant and perceptive writers on sport today.With seventy black-and-white and colour photographs by Patrick Eagar and other seminal photographers, it is is essential reading (and looking) for ardent fans and will exhilarate those who know nothing about cricket.