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The publication of Feel: Robbie Williams by Chris Heath in September 2004 caused shockwaves of controversy and delight. Not only was its publication trumpeted in tabloids, on TV and the radio, but it was also critically lauded by the broadsheets. Finally, a book had been written on the subject of celebrity and the modern world which had intelligence, honesty and humour.
Written by Chris Heath, who spent nearly two years working with Robbie on this book, every word is imbued with Robbie's humour, charisma, talent, memories and complexity. But more than ever before, this book tells the truth about his extraordinary life. You may have seen his face a million times, heard his music every day, followed him from the beginning of Take That, but this is a man with some serious surprises in store.
After years of rumour and lies, the complete, intimate story of Robert P. Williams had been written.
This is a groundbreaking book.
Published: 31 Jan 2005
In this book is a world. A world created by two awkward guys who share their lives on the internet!
We are Dan and Phil and we invite you on a journey inside our minds! From the stories of our actual births, to exploring Phil’s teenage diary and all the reasons why Dan’s a fail. Learn how to draw the perfect cat whiskers, get advice on how to make YouTube videos and discover which of our dining chairs represents you emotionally. With everything from what we text each other, to the time we met One Direction and what really happened in Vegas...
This is The Amazing Book Is Not On Fire!
Simplicity looks easy. It's not. It's easier to complicate than simplify. This book presents stunningly simple examples of concepts that have changed the world - from the single piece of paper that became the American Declaration of Independence, giving birth to the most powerful nation in the history of the world, to the symbol and line that enables us to write music. Thought-provoking and incisive, Brutal Simplicity of Thought is the distillation, in words and pictures, of the Saatchi method of creativity.
Whether you are a student, a manager, self-employed or a CEO, this book has something to teach us all: simplicity rules.
Published: 15 Sep 2011
Brought up amid near-Dickensian squalour in the tough East End of Glasgow and sexually abused by her uncle, Janey married into a Glasgow criminal family as a teenager, then found herself having to cope with the murder of her mother, violence, religious sectarianism, abject poverty and a frightening family of in-laws.
First-hand, Janey saw the gangland violence and met extraordinary characters within an enclosed and seldom-revealed Glasgow underworld - from the grim and far-from-Swinging 60s, to the discos of the 70s, to the tidal wave of heroin addiction which swept through and engulfed Glasgow's East End during the 1980s.
This evocative, intimate and moving portrayal of a woman forced to fight every day for her family's future will strike a chord with anyone who has ever struggled against adversity.
Voted the UK’s Favourite Nature Book
The memoir that inspired Chris Packham's BBC documentary, Asperger’s and Me
Every minute was magical, every single thing it did was fascinating and everything it didn't do was equally wondrous, and to be sat there, with a Kestrel, a real live Kestrel, my own real live Kestrel on my wrist! I felt like I'd climbed through a hole in heaven's fence.
An introverted, unusual young boy, isolated by his obsessions and a loner at school, Chris Packham only felt at ease in the fields and woods around his suburban home. But when he stole a young Kestrel from its nest, he was about to embark on a friendship that would teach him what it meant to love, and that would change him forever. In his rich, lyrical and emotionally exposing memoir, Chris brings to life his childhood in the 70s, from his bedroom bursting with fox skulls, birds' eggs and sweaty jam jars, to his feral adventures. But pervading his story is the search for freedom, meaning and acceptance in a world that didn’t understand him.
Beautifully wrought, this coming-of-age memoir will be unlike any you've ever read.
'I promised that I would one day write a book and tell the world about the home for unmarried mothers. I have at last kept my promise.'
In Ireland, 1951, the young June Goulding took up a position as midwife in a home for unmarried mothers run by the Sacred Heart nuns. What she witnessed there was to haunt her for the next fifty years. It was a place of secrets, lies and cruelty. A place where women picked grass by hand and tarred roads whilst heavily pregnant. Where they were denied any contact with the outside world; denied basic medical treatment and abused for their 'sins'; where, after the birth, they were forced into hard labour in the convent for three years. But worst of all was that the young women were expected to raise their babies during these three years so that they could then be sold - given up for adoption in exchange for a donation to the nuns.
Shocked by the nuns' inhumane treatment of the frightened young women, June risked her job to bring some light into their dark lives. June's memoir tells the story of twelve women's experiences in this home and of the hardships they endured, but also the kindness she offered them, and the hope she was able to bring.
'Life was a wordless battle of wits between us, with her keeping a sharp look-out for signs of neglect, and me trying to disguise my slovenliness by subterfuge. I became an adept at sweeping dust under the bed, and always used the same few pieces of silver'
Unimpressed by the world of debutante balls, Monica Dickens shocked her family by getting a job. With no experience whatsoever, she gained employment as a cook-general.
Monica's cooking and cleaning skills left much to be desired, and her first few positions were short lived, but soon she started to hold her own. Monica discovered the pleasure of daily banter with the milkman and grocer's boy and the joy of doing an honest day's work, all the while keeping a wry eye on the childish pique of her employers.
One Pair of Hands is a fascinating and thoroughly entertaining memoir of life upstairs and downstairs in the early 1930s.
From musical theatre star to Celebrity Big Brother diva, a member of the Loose Women family, Stephanie has packed a lot into her life for someone so young – and she's just getting started. Not shy about talking frankly about her experiences and publically wearing her heart on her sleeve, Stephanie has kept the nation hooked, but she's also become a tabloid and weekly magazine queen.
For the very first time, Stephanie has decided to speak out and reveal the truth behind the headlines. In Sincere, she opens up about finding fame as an innocent young actress and witnessing the darker side of celebrity, laying bare her thoughts about hitting rock bottom, unravelling in public and triumphantly turning her life around for her baby.
In this heartfelt memoir, she also talks candidly about past relationships and the ups and downs of being in the spotlight.
Bob Carlos Clarke, one of the most controversial photographers of his generation, had a reputation for brilliant, sexually-infused shots. He had entertained Princess Diana at his studio and was a mainstay of Chelsea parties for twenty years. He photographed major rock stars and models, and he was universally recognised as an unrivalled photographic printer. Students of photography packed his lectures and queued for hours for his autograph, and many experts believe him to be the among the greatest unsung artistic talents of his times.
But Carlos Clarke was also his own worst enemy, a unruly genius beset by self-doubt and prone to bad decisions. When he killed himself in 2006, at the age of 55, many people saw it as an inevitable ending to an inspired but troubled career.
Simon Garfield stumbled on this world of photography, rock music, moneyed society and erotica while working on another project, and soon it enveloped him. The more people he spoke to, the greater his curiosity grew. Who was this unpredictable man? Was he really the 'dark genius' those in the know saw him as? And, most importantly - what, or who, killed Bob Carlos Clarke?
Passionate and compelling, Exposure is a story of love, art, sex and corrosive despair. Above all, it is a unique window into the soul of a man burdened with obsession.
Published: 14 May 2009
While photographing a broken-down cottage in a shady forest, architect Cathryn Thomlinson stumbles upon a seventeenth-century manuscript hidden under the crumbling floorboards. Intrigued by the references to 'faeries', Cathryn eagerly deciphers the text, but finds it to be the ramblings of an old woman, Good Dame Kellerman, who claimed to have discovered a faerie realm within the forest. But when Cathryn's film is developed, she is astonished to see small creatures with sprouting wings, glancing mischievously at her from the photographs!
In the Forest Fey presents us with Kellerman's extraordinary journal, illustrated with ethereal photos of the faeries, documenting the history and everyday lives of the beautiful beings that, unbeknownst to humans, inhabit our world alongside us. This remarkable series of tales begins with the creation of the faeries and their realm, and follows the escapades of individual faeries and the clans to which they belong.
This unique book evokes a world of romance, innocence and heroism, where tales of immortal beings sit alongside stunning, dreamlike images of the faeries in their forest.
Published: 7 Sep 2006
Now available in an updated edition called Exploited, available in print and ebook.
'I'd never have guessed that when your world's tumbling down you can carry on as usual. But it wasn't like I had a big sign on my back saying "I've been raped." Nobody noticed a thing.'
Emma was just 13 when her happy childhood came crashing down. She had no idea the young lads she and her friends met every Saturday in the shopping mall weren't all they seemed.
The boys were part of an organised gang targeting innocent young girls, grooming them for prostitution. Captivated by the ring leader, Emma didn't see the first brutal rape coming. From then on, her life was never her own ...
This is the harrowing true story of how a nice girl from a good home found herself drawn into a trap of degradation and violence, frightened for her life and not knowing where to turn. But it is also the story of finding the courage and inner strength to risk everything, and escape.
Published: 4 Feb 2010
'Good fences make good neighbours, but what about bad ones?'
The Israeli separation barrier is probably the most iconic divider of land since the Berlin Wall. It has been declared illegal under international law and its impact on life in the West Bank has been enormous.
Mark Thomas - as only he could - decided the only way to really get to grips with this huge divide was to use the barrier as a route map, to 'walk the wall', covering the entire distance with little more in his armoury than Kendal Mint Cake and a box of blister plasters.
In the course of his ramble he was tear-gassed, stoned, sunburned, rained on and hailed on and even lost the wall a couple of times. But thankfully he was also welcomed and looked after by Israelis and Palestinians - from farmers and soldiers to smugglers and zookeepers - and finally earned a unique insight of the real Middle East in all its entrenched and yet life-affirming glory. And all without hardly ever getting arrested!
Melissa Wareham always wanted to work with dogs. After failing her biology O-level she realised she'd have to start at the bottom, cleaning out kennels at Battersea Dogs Home.
From frail old men looking for a four-legged companion to famous folk who've lost their favourite hound, it seemed that at some point everyone passes through Battersea's doors. Amongst the clamour of thousands of lost pets crying 'Rescue Me!' and the noise of the railway lines above, Melissa found she had come home.
The first dog Melissa fell for was Tulip, a sweet, elderly and somewhat dotty mongrel who decided a solo bus ride into the West End might be fun. Next up was Roscoe: found by the ambulance team with his dead owner, he is rehabilitated with a little help from his master's hat. And then - many, many dogs later - there is Gus. With his owner in jail, Melissa finally finds the dog she is to take home as her own.
Heart-warming and compulsively readable, Rescue Me is Melissa's memoir of her fifteen years at Britain's most-loved dogs' home.
'You'd tell me if Daddy touched your private parts, wouldn't you, Carolina?'
'No,' said Carolina firmly.
'Why not, honey?'
'Because it's a secret.'
It is only when long-buried memories from her own childhood start to surface that Ellen realises the terrible truth about her two young daughters: Carolina and Amy are being sexually abused by their father.
Ellen writes with unflinching honesty about the heartbreak of finding out her daughters were abused, her fears of losing custody and her fight to have her story believed by sceptical doctors and social workers.
A harrowing true story of sexual abuse from a mother's point of view, No More Hurt is a deeply affecting chronicle of Ellen's hard-won battle to create a place of safety and love for herself and her daughters.
'I could see what he was doing to the other girls because he had been doing it to me for as long as I could remember'
At just six years of age, Audrey Delaney's childhood was cut tragically short when her father first abused her. What followed was a lifetime of pain and betrayal at the hands of the very man who should have protected her. Too young to know right from wrong, the only thing Audrey knew for sure was that her father's actions left her feeling sordid and guilty. When she saw him touching other girls, this innocent child felt that she was to blame.
Then finally, after years of harbouring her father's shocking secret, Audrey found the courage to go public. All My Fault is the inspiring and triumphant account of a scared and hurt little girl who managed to confront her demons and reclaim her life.
'In retrospect, I can see I was the perfect candidate for child abuse. My parents had divorced and my mother didn't show me much love. Her self-imposed isolation kept me away from other children. My abuser had nobody in his way.'
Please Let It Stop is a gripping and ultimately inspiring memoir of suffering and determination, of obstacles and inner battles. Jacqueline Gold was abused by her stepfather for many years, but one day she summoned the courage to ask him to stop.
Jacqueline went on to become Chief Executive of Ann Summers, but the journey was far from easy. In this, her no-holds-barred autobiography, Jacqueline describes her abused childhood, her tumultuous struggles to find love and conquer depression, and the heartbreak of undergoing IVF.
Told with remarkable honesty, her story is a testament to one woman's ability to overcome the darkest of times.
My brother Patrick remembers my first beating, of which I assume I was completely unaware. He was just five years old when he watched our mother punching herself again and again in her pregnant stomach while shouting at the top of her voice, 'I don't want this fucking child!'
Ken and Patrick Doyle grew up in a family of nine children. For sixteen years their home was a place of suffering. Behind the doors of their ordinary, three-bedroomed house they were subjected to deprivation, cruelty and humiliation at the hands of the one person who should have loved and protected them - their own mother.
Starved, savagely beaten, locked up for days on end and sent out to steal, their story is a catalogue of abuse. Yet, despite numerous official reports of abuse from social workers and health boards, their suffering continued ...
In Mummy from Hell, the victims tell the horrifying true story of their childhood and how they survived it.
When Ann Kenny was four years old her foster mother hit her across the face with a fireplace shovel. She was left lying unconscious on the cold hard floor while the family went to mass. She almost lost an eye.
This is just one of the childhood incidents Ann recalls in her vivid, shocking memoir of growing up in rural Ireland, in a house where she wasn't wanted. Her early story is Cinderella-like, but without the happy ending: she had two older sisters who were loved, but Ann was put to work on household chores and received constant neglect and physical abuse, and sexual abuse from her grandfather. On growing up Ann found it hard to escape the shadows of her past, marrying an alcoholic and effectively raised her children herself.
Ann eventually found the road to recovery and her book is a testament to the strength of a survivor. She began writing the book as she set to find out who was the tiny child she remembered left in a wicker basket - that child turned out to be herself.
At the vulnerable age of 12, Lara McDonnell was picked out by a gang of men who befriended her, showered her with attention and gained her trust. Manipulated and groomed, her life quickly spiralled out of control as the men trafficked her around the country, deliberately keeping her compliant with drink and drugs. Deeply disturbed, and frightened about what the gang would do to her if she tried to break free, it would take over 4 years for Lara to find the strength to fight back, flee Oxford and escape her nightmare.
This is her heartbreaking story.