A book of horror and hope, written with rare humanity.
A riveting no-nonsense memoir that pulls back the curtains on your worst fears and shows you that someone, somewhere, will always truly care.
Outstanding... a graphic but deeply humane account of what drew her to take on such work, and how she steels herself to tackle the worst of human scenarios.
"I think what 'When the Dust Settles' taught me is that all experiences are of value, even major disasters of the sort that Easthope has experienced over her extraordinary career. In the words of Leonard Cohen: "There is a crack, a crack in everything That's how the light gets in" Easthope shows us how perfection and imperfection are woven together. Everything is flawed. Yet there is also hope despite the flaws. It is through the cracks, and through the dogged dedication of disaster experts like Easthope, who has been an adviser on nearly every major disaster for the last twenty years, that the light comes in. Hold onto that thought as we navigate dark days ahead."
'This generosity is one of the things that makes the book so powerful, all the more as it never slips into a sentimental glossing over of incompetence or insensitivity. Easthope makes no secret of her anger, but takes care that it should be properly understood and directed, and doesn't create more stigma, fear, defensiveness and failure. Both in its style and in its substance, this is a profoundly moral book, written with deceptive conversational ease; it opens up a world of terrible and extreme experience, but stubbornly continues to look at what's there, the inner and outer landscape of what Easthope is not afraid to call the soul.'
'Easthope, whether she knows it or not, is that rare thing, a genuine philosopher thinking through what she is actually doing in the mitigation of human suffering, grief and isolation. This book is more searching as an analysis of human needs and nature than a good many technical volumes on the subject.'
'Enthralling...though laced with bleak humour, this vivid and humane book forces readers to look into some exceptionally dark places'
'A remarkable account...This should be a dark and depressing read; that it isn't, that it is ultimately hopeful and uplifting, is down to the utter human decency that the author represents'
Never less than reassuringly humane, it does for disaster what Rachel Clarke's Dear Life has done for palliative medicine and Adam Kay's This Is Going To Hurt for obstetrics. She shows and ells and, vitally, cares.
While this book is not for the faint-hearted, it does provide an antidote to despair. There are people out there imagining scenarios the rest of us would rather ignore and doing the hard work needed to manage them.
An entirely unique vision of the human experience
A candid, unsettling and darkly funny account of a life spent dealing with catastrophes
'With wisdom, resilience and candour, When The Dust Settles lifts us up by showing that humanity, hope and humour can - and must - be found on the darkest of days'
A poignant, funny, analytical and profoundly humane collection of "stories of love, loss and hope" from a lifetime in this compelling and complex world.
'a gripping account, filled with compassion'
New Statesman Best Books of 2022 so far 'Her sensitive and profoundly moral book explores how human beings can preserve their resilience and live with loss.'
The intractable problems of recovery come to the fore as the book proceeds, and Easthope gives deep consideration to the lessons we can learn."
'This book rewrites your perceptions of the disasters and wars of our lifetime with vivid details and vignettes. Yes, some of these are dark, but there is often humour, and the book is laced with humanity and decency...When The Dust Settles is a literary memento which honours the messy truth of life.'
'A deeply humane, occasionally unsettling, and strangely uplifting book' 'When the Dust Settles allows us to glimpse at places most of us will never inhabit. Throughout, Easthope blends the professional and the personal, writing sensitively about her experience of multiple miscarriages. Yet the weight of the scenarios that Easthope describes is counterbalanced by her calm tone, understated style, and inky-black humour'