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Cast Away


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A compelling non-fiction exploration of the refugee crisis in the Mediterranean, told through the stories of those who have made the perilous journey and lived to speak of their experience

About the Author

CHARLOTTE MCDONALD-GIBSON has worked as a foreign correspondent for 14 years, reporting from three continents for the international media. From 2011 to 2013 she was Deputy Foreign Editor of the Independent, overseeing the paper's coverage of key world news events including the Arab Spring. Now based in Brussels, she writes about Europe for the Independent, TIME, and other publications. This is her first book.


Praise for Cast Away "[T]his stirring contemporary account roots the mythic perilous journey in the heartbreak of personal stories."Booklist "Skillfully weaving together the tragic stories of her subjects, McDonald-Gibson successfully humanizes them and provides readers a much-needed inside look at a significant problem. A powerfully written, well-documented account of a humanitarian crisis of epic proportions."Kirkus Reviews (starred) "Well-composed and well-researched, with the satisfaction of human interest stories, this title belongs in all collections for its timeliness and historical and political significance."Library Journal "A closely reported, passionately argued, often deeply moving account of five refugees journeys to Europe. . . . It yanks away the anonymous screen of numbers and brings you face to face with real peoplepeople you can recognise, in situations you can t."The Guardian "McDonald-Gibson s gripping storytelling has a cinematic quality as she inhabits the minds of these individuals. At times it s easy to forget that these are the experiences of real people, not fictional characters, as the reader becomes immersed in harrowing stories of danger, deception and disillusionment."The Irish Times "A series of portraits which re-humanise individuals who are routinely treated as statistics when they are not demonised outright. . . . An invaluable reminder that most migrants are people who are really not so very different from us."International Business Times "McDonald-Gibson keenly evokes the hell of [these] voyages: water lapping over the sides of the boats, nothing to eat or drink, failing engines, bodies thrown overboard. To read these vivid stories is to understand not just the enormity of what is taking place, but the courage and desperation of those who embark on them."Caroline Moorehead, New Statesman "We have digested the refugee crisis in its scary statistics, its shocking images, and in the xenophobic reactions it has provoked inside Europe. But in Cast Away we discover the human reality of the biggest crisis of our times as it is experienced by the individuals concerned, in all the painful particularity of their individual lives, reported and narrated with vigor and compassion."Peter Popham, author of The Lady and the Peacock "This is a book that needed to be written and stories which needed to be told."Alex Crawford, author of Colonel Gaddafi s Hat "This is a fascinating and necessary book about one of the great tragedies of our age as people flee failed and failing states in pursuit of a safe and normal life. It is essential reading for anybody interested in the individuals taking part in this mass flight and why they feel they have no choice but to escape."Patrick Cockburn "A remarkably well documented and vivid account of why and how people are on the move towards Europe, an indictment of the European Union and its member states, and a call for moral clarity and political leadership."Francois Crepeau, U.N. Special Rapporteur on the Human Rights of Migrants "Searing tales of courage, hardship and survival that reveal the terrible human cost of Europe s dystopian borders. A tour-de-force of committed investigative reporting."Matthew Carr, author of Fortress Europe"

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