Transworld signs 'extraordinary' story of British soldier Gutteridge

Transworld signs 'extraordinary' story of British soldier Gutteridge

Transworld has scooped an "extraordinary and deeply moving" story of a British soldier who suffered life-changing injuries in Afghanistan.

Henry Vines, editorial director, acquired world English language rights to Never Will I Die from Rory Scarfe and Jordan Lees at The Blair Partnership. The book will be written by soldier Toby Gutteridge in collaboration with journalist Michael Calvin. It will publish on 12th May 2022. 

Gutteridge was one of the youngest ever recruits to pass the elite selection process for the Special Forces. At only 24, he was shot through the neck while operating behind enemy lines in Afghanistan. He survived despite not breathing for at least 20 minutes. After being induced into a coma, doctors in the UK recommended that his life support machine be switched off, but with the defiant spirit that would define his recovery, he pulled through. Now quadriplegic, capable of movement only with his head, Toby has rebuilt his life. After returning to formal education, and earning a first-class honours degree in business studies at Bournemouth University, he now runs his company Bravery, an extreme sports brand that supports children in poverty.

The publisher described the book as "an extraordinary story of survival against overwhelming odds, and of the power of the human spirit to endure the hardest of challenges". It added: "Brutally honest and authentic, Toby builds a compelling picture of the type of person produced by the Special Forces system, and tells of how one split second changed the course of his life forever. With a defiant and inspiring message, Never Will I Die is a passionate account of life triumphing over death. It explores what extreme experiences teach us about what really matters."

Gutteridge said: "Everyone will experience at some point in their lives a life changing moment, an event, big or small, that changes the course of that person’s life forever. It will make you re-evaluate things, question things and ultimately affect the choices you make from that point on. These experiences are never easy as they push you out of your comfort zone or put you on a path that suddenly is fraught with obstacles and challenges and headed for the unknown. I hope the book will help readers to ease their fears about change, and encourage them to follow their own path in life."

Calvin added: "It is a privilege to help tell Toby’s story. He is one of the best, bravest, and most remarkable men I have met. His honesty and humility, in coming to terms with almost unimaginable adversity, is inspirational."

Vines commented: "Toby’s story is a powerful reminder of the fragility of life, and why every thread of it is worth fighting for. His courage and his extraordinary determination are humbling and inspiring, and I hope his example will be a comfort to anyone searching for strength in difficult times."