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A RADIO 4 BOOK OF THE WEEK

‘A love letter to police officers and the most vulnerable people they protect and serve’ CHRISTIE WATSON, author of THE LANGUAGE OF KINDNESS

‘Extraordinary . . . urgent and compelling. We all have lessons to learn from this book’ SIMON MAYO

There is much more to policing than tackling crime. Every one of us will need the help of an officer at some point in our lives, often when we’re at our most vulnerable. Yet how much do we really know about the realities of policing? Using real life stories from his twenty-five years of service with the Metropolitan Police, John Sutherland invites us beyond the cordon tape to bear witness to all he has seen. In doing so, he offers a hopeful vision for how we can tackle some of the biggest challenges facing society today.

Includes a new Afterword on policing during the Covid-19 pandemic

Reviews

A love letter to police officers and the most vulnerable people they protect and serve
CHRISTIE WATSON, author of THE LANGUAGE OF KINDNESS
This is an important book, one that should be read by the Home Secretary and every member of Parliament, as well as every newspaper editor and crime correspondent. John Sutherland is someone who after twenty-five years of police experience has a remarkable story to tell . . . one that we ignore at our peril
JEFFREY ARCHER
This book will change the way you think about the police. A rich and reflective account, full of anecdote and lessons learned about society from someone who spent his career working at its fringes. Anyone who cares about justice - whether citizen or politician - should read this book
SARAH LANGFORD, author of IN YOUR DEFENCE
An incredibly thoughtful, eloquent, and revealing book about policing. Not only is it absolutely fascinating, there are also a whole heap of lessons that can and should be learned within its pages. Accessible, considered, meaningful, shocking, inspiring
LOVEREADING, Book of the Month
I've never heard the job described better by anyone. John Sutherland gives a unique and personal insight into what it really means to be a police officer in modern England. The adrenaline rushes, the dreadful tedium of bureaucracy, walking on eggshells for fear of offending anyone, the moments of stark horror or overwhelming sadness; the indescribable thrill of making a difference to someone's life and the depths of despair when you fail. The overwhelming workload and the emotional overload, seeing more things daily than most people will ever see in a lifetime. Running towards danger when everyone else is running away. A job that on any given day can send your spirits soaring to the heavens, or leave your soul scarred forever
PETER JAMES
Urgent and compelling. We all have lessons to learn from this book
SIMON MAYO
Honest and sensible . . . without being sensationalist or sentimental, Sutherland lifts the lid on that underworld of despair, degradation and needless death. It's a read that should shame anyone with a conscience
Richard Morrison, THE TIMES
The most comprehensive insight into policing I have read . . . well researched and crafted with the deftness of an exceptionally fine writer . . . compelling
DAILY EXPRESS
Tough, earnest, thought-provoking and moving, this is a book that lingers
PRESS ASSOCIATION
Tough, earnest, thought-provoking and moving
i NEWSPAPER