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‘A vivid and honest account of what it’s like to be terribly ill. The details are brilliantly recollected and he writes with a songwriter’s eye for the telling phrase’

‘Wa is such a good writer that you feel straight away that you’re in good hands’ W I L L I A M  L E I T H   M A I L  O N  S U N D AY

‘In the summer of 1992, on the eve of a trip to America, I was taken to a London hospital with bad chest pain and stomach pains. They kept me in for two and a half months. I fell very ill — about as ill as it is possible to be without actually dying — confronting a disease hardly anyone, not even some doctors, had heard of. People ask what was it like, and I say yes, of course it was dramatic and graphic and all that stuff, but at times it was just kind of comic and strange. It was, I suppose, my life-changing story.’ ‘Not at all depressing, thanks to the author’s extremely well-turned prose … This is not so much for music lovers as for lovers of life’ S U N DAY  T I M E S

PAT I E N T

OBSERVER

‘Lucid and affecting … He’s a natural writer, and Patient is certainly the best book I’ve ever read by a pop star’

B E N WAT T

TIMEOUT

‘Wrien with the intensity and lyricism one would expect from its author . . . A triumphant, gripping memoir’ D A I LY  T E L E G R A P H

‘Vividly wrien, this is both appealing and appalling — a glimpse into the abyss’ ★ ★ ★ ★  M A I L  O N  S U N D AY  B O O K S  O F  T H E  Y E A R Design by Greg Heinimann. Cover photograph © PhotoAlto / Alamy www.bloomsbury.com

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B E N WAT T

PAT I E N T THE TRUE STORY OF A RARE ILLNESS

‘By turns terrifying, mordantly funny and intensely moving’

‘Wa’s harrowing, candid account lives on in the mind’

D A I LY  T E L E G R A P H

W I L L I A M  B OY D

£8.99

19/12/2013 07:21


PATIENT The True Story of a Rare Illness

Ben Watt

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Praise for Patient: ‘Many people suffer the pain and indignities of intensive medical treatment, but few have written about it with quite such alarming vividness or clarity’ Daily Telegraph ‘A fine testimonial to [Watt’s] fortitude, his powers as a writer and the NHS’ William Boyd ‘In conversation Watt is an articulate and thoughtful speaker, disarmingly humorous but sensitive to even the tiniest nuances. It is a talent that is much in evidence on the pages of Patient and one which gives the book its tremendous cathartic impact’ Scotsman ‘Laced with nostalgia for childhood and the life we take for granted, Patient is as gripping as an airport novel and as gruelling as a horror story. ****’ Q ‘A harrowing record of the fear, pain and humiliations which make up serious illness and hospital stays’ Nursing Times ‘Remarkable and moving ...What emerges is a testament to one man’s courage and the ability of the human spirit to find solace and healing in the middle of despair’ Muzik

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‘A fascinating book ... Simply,poignantly and unsentimentally told’ List ‘An extremely vivid description of the effects of illness and the feelings of hopelessness and mortality it invokes. ****’ Maxim ‘Patient is a remarkable literary journey:the quest to understand the physical self ... His survival makes compulsive reading’ Arena ‘Compelling ... An eye-wateringly harrowing and candid account of his near-death from one of the world’s rarest diseases’ Mail on Sunday ‘An understated, unemotional account of illness made all the more effective by its matter-of-factness’ Sunday Times ‘Watt is made of particularly fine stuff, possessed of a shining intelligence that allowed him to transcend his horrible circumstances ... I cannot think of any book that so clearly describes the gap between sickness and health’ The Times

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     Born in 1962, BEN WATT is a musician, singer, songwriter, DJ and author. First published in 1996, Patient:The True Story of a Rare Illness, was a New York Times Notable Book of the Year, a Sunday Times Book of the Year and was shortlisted for the Esquire Non-fiction Book of the Year. His second book, Romany and Tom, was published in February 2014. He is perhaps most well known for his twenty-year career in altpop duo Everything But The Girl (1982–2002). He is also an international club and radio DJ, and since 2003 has run his own independent record labels Buzzin’ Fly and Strange Feeling. Having recently returned to songwriting and live performance, his first solo album for thirty years is expected in 2014. He lives in north London with his wifeTraceyThorn and their three children.

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    Romany and Tom

First published in Great Britain in  by Viking This paperback edition published in  by Bloomsbury Publishing Plc Copyright © Ben Watt  The moral right of the author has been asserted Bloomsbury Publishing, London, New Delhi, New York and Sydney  Bedford Square, London WCB DP A CIP catalogue record for this book is available from the British Library ISBN                Printed and bound by CPI Group (UK) Ltd, Croydon CR0 4YY

www.bloomsbury.com

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‘A vivid and honest account of what it’s like to be terribly ill. The details are brilliantly recollected and he writes with a songwriter’s eye for the telling phrase’

‘Wa is such a good writer that you feel straight away that you’re in good hands’ W I L L I A M  L E I T H   M A I L  O N  S U N D AY

‘In the summer of 1992, on the eve of a trip to America, I was taken to a London hospital with bad chest pain and stomach pains. They kept me in for two and a half months. I fell very ill — about as ill as it is possible to be without actually dying — confronting a disease hardly anyone, not even some doctors, had heard of. People ask what was it like, and I say yes, of course it was dramatic and graphic and all that stuff, but at times it was just kind of comic and strange. It was, I suppose, my life-changing story.’ ‘Not at all depressing, thanks to the author’s extremely well-turned prose … This is not so much for music lovers as for lovers of life’ S U N DAY  T I M E S

PAT I E N T

OBSERVER

‘Lucid and affecting … He’s a natural writer, and Patient is certainly the best book I’ve ever read by a pop star’

B E N WAT T

TIMEOUT

‘Wrien with the intensity and lyricism one would expect from its author . . . A triumphant, gripping memoir’ D A I LY  T E L E G R A P H

‘Vividly wrien, this is both appealing and appalling — a glimpse into the abyss’ ★ ★ ★ ★  M A I L  O N  S U N D AY  B O O K S  O F  T H E  Y E A R Design by Greg Heinimann. Cover photograph © PhotoAlto / Alamy www.bloomsbury.com

49171 Patient.indd 1

B E N WAT T

PAT I E N T THE TRUE STORY OF A RARE ILLNESS

‘By turns terrifying, mordantly funny and intensely moving’

‘Wa’s harrowing, candid account lives on in the mind’

D A I LY  T E L E G R A P H

W I L L I A M  B OY D

£8.99

19/12/2013 07:21


Patient by Ben Watt