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If You Sit Very Still

If You Sit Very Still

Marian Partington. Foreword by Marina Cantacuzino

Quick Overview

When the news broke that her missing sister Lucy had been murdered, Marian Partington had one of two choices to make. She could let the grief and rage she felt overwhelm her, or she could try to turn her trauma into something good. This moving memoir details Marian's fierce engagement with her loss and refusal to become its victim.
Details Price Qty
Paperback / softback
2016, 8.54in x 6.14in / 217mm x 156mm, 208pp
ISBN: 9781785921407
2016, ePUB, 208pp
ISBN: 978-1-78450-407-6
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In 1994, 21 years after her disappearance, Lucy Partington's remains were discovered in Fred and Rosemary West's basement at 25 Cromwell Street, Gloucester. In this powerful and lyrical book, Lucy's elder sister, Marian, reclaims Lucy from the status of victim and finds an authentic and compassionate response to her traumatic loss. Her inspiring narrative of healing draws on Buddhist and Quaker practices and culminates in restorative justice work in prisons.


'We are spared no aspect of the anguish, confusion and anger experienced, but are also told an extraordinary story of inner movement and growth - growth in a faith much less orthodox on the face of it than Lucy's ardent Catholicism but equally deep and serious. It is a book about the massive difficulty of anything like reconciliation in the wake of outrage. There is nothing easily consoling here, but rather a sense of stillness, acceptance and hope - both given and worked for.'
- Rowan Williams, Book of the Year 2012, Times Literary Supplement

'There is not a sentence in this book that has not been felt, fought for and hard won.'
- Craig Brown, Book of the Week, The Mail on Sunday

'This is not a story of 'coping with loss', nor of 'overcoming emotion', nor less of 'achieving forgiveness'. It is the story of simply, doggedly and patiently refusing to accept the path of victimhood, revenge or bitter resentment. Instead Marian has walked the way of uncertainty, humility and hope which, through spiritual struggle and human kindness, accepts and transforms sadness, loss and evil.'
- Stephen Cherry, author of Healing Agony: Re-Imagining Forgiveness

'An outstanding and beautifully crafted redemptive memoir.'
- Marina Cantacuzino, Huffington Post

'If You Sit Very Still should feature on everybody's bookshelf alongside such life guides as Shakespeare and the Bible.'
- Jeffery Taylor, Sunday Express

'An anguished, gruellingly honest and lyrical cry from the heart.'
- Human Givens Journal


By (author): Marian Partington
Foreword by: Marina Cantacuzino