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Neil Astley is editor of Bloodaxe Books, which he founded in 1978. His books include two poetry collections and several anthologies, including 'Staying Alive: real poems from unreal times' (2002), 'Pleased to See Me: 69 very sexy poems' (2002), 'Do Not Go Gentle: poems for funerals' (2003), 'Being Alive: the sequel to Staying Alive' (2004), 'Passionfood: 100 Love Poems' (2005), 'Soul Food: nourishing poems for starved minds' [with Pamela Robertson-Pearce] (2007), 'Earth Shattering: ecopoems' (2007) and the DVD-book 'In Person: 30 Poets filmed by Pamela Robertson-Pearce' (2008). 'Being Human', the third anthology of the Staying Alive "trilogy", is due from Bloodaxe in 2011. He has published two novels, 'The End of My Tether' (Flambard, 2002; Scribner, 2003), which was shortlisted for the Whitbread First Novel Award, and 'The Sheep Who Changed the World' (Flambard, 2005). He received an Eric Gregory Award for his poetry and was given a D.Litt from Newcastle University for his work with Bloodaxe Books. He lives in Northumberland.
'This is a book to make you fall in love with poetry - Go out and buy it for everyone you love' - Christina Patterson, Independent. 'A revelation - An anthology like this should make poetry reviewers feel not just enthusiastic but evangelical. Buy it. Leave it around the house. Give it to friends. It could keep them alive' - John Carey, Sunday Times. 'Anyone who has the faintest glimmer of interest in modern poetry must buy it. If I were master of the universe or held the lottery's purse strings, there would be a copy of it in every school, public library and hotel bedroom in the land. On page after page I found myself laughing, crying, wondering, rejoicing, reliving, wishing, envying. It is a book full of hope and high art which restores your faith in poetry' - Alan Taylor, Sunday Herald. 'The book is without equal as a handbook for students and readers' - Sian Hughes, Times Educational Supplement. 'The best anthology I've read or am likely to read - devastating' - Michael Colgan, Irish Times (Books of the Year). 'I don't often read poetry, so Staying Alive was a revelation' - Ian Rankin, Sunday Telegraph (Books of the Year). 'A book that travels everywhere with me - It is full of beautiful writing that can blow your mind' - Beth Orton, The Times.