Faber to publish Judith Tebbutt

Faber to publish Judith Tebbutt

Faber is to publish an account of being held hostage by Somali pirates written by Judith Tebbutt, the wife of Faber’s finance director David Tebbutt, who was killed in the attack.

The memoir of her 192 days in captivity will be titled A Long Walk Home: One Woman’s Story of Kidnap, Hostage, Loss – and Survival, and be published on 11th July 2013.

Judith and David were on holiday in Kenya in September 2011 when they were attacked as they stayed on the Kenyan coast near the Somali border. David was killed, while Judith was taken to Somalia and held hostage.

Faber c.e.o. and publisher Stephen Page described it as a “landmark publication” for the company, and said: “It goes beyond an account of terrible events, and is an inspiration, albeit one that does not pull its punches and gives no ground for sentiment or easy epiphanies.”

He added: “Judith Tebbutt's relationship to Faber, of course, goes beyond her writing of this book. Her husband David Tebbutt was our dear colleague. This book also, therefore, gives us a chance to celebrate the life of our friend, whose story lies in the book, told by the person who knew him best. Judith has done so with such warmth, wit and love. We were privileged to have known David and with this publication we can remember him in the best way we know how, by finding readers for David and Judith's life, in all its joy, love, humour and sadness.”

Judith said she decided to write her story while in captivity, using pen and paper from her captors to record her thoughts and feelings. She said: “As I walked one more circuit of my darkened room, I was trying to come to terms with what was happening to me—thinking, too, about how I could relate to family and friends what I’d been through, and how brave David had been in trying to resist the pirates.

"I also wanted a record for my son Ollie, so that any future family members would know the courage and stoicism that he’d shown.”

She added: “After my release, once I was ready to start in earnest, there was only one publisher I approached. David had so enjoyed working at Faber, in what he felt was a supportive, family atmosphere, and so for me they were the obvious choice.”


Photo credit: Eleanor Crow