On the 6th of February 2019, I took my first step on a long-distance hike that would change my life: the Cape Wrath Trail in winter. Even before I reached the end at Cape Wrath I knew that this was a story that needed to be told, that demanded to be told, and today I’m delighted to announce that The Farthest Shore, my book about this journey (and the greater journey it’s all really about), is now available to order.
The book’s official launch date is September the 2nd, 2021, and we are trying to arrange a good old-fashioned book launch in a bookshop – hopefully up in the Highlands. I’ll share more as soon as it’s confirmed.
To pre-order your copy and receive 20% off signed copies, click here. UK delivery is free.
This isn’t my first book, but it feels like a reset and a new beginning. Those of you who have followed me for a long time may remember The Only Genuine Jones, Crowley’s Rival and The Atholl Expedition– novels I self-published back in the distant past of 2012-14. I’ve also published a coffee-table book on trekking in Europe. The Farthest Shore is very different to all of these. I now see my early books as clumsy and naive, and I removed them from sale long ago – but you’ll find echoes of them throughout The Farthest Shore, which I believe represents a maturation of my mountain writing. It’s the work I’m at once proudest of and most unsure of. Putting it out there feels like a leap of faith. It’s much more than just a hiking memoir, more than nature writing, and includes some of the most personal writing I have ever published, shining a light into corners of my soul that I have spoken to very few about. I think of The Farthest Shore as my first real book.
Vertebrate were my first choice when I started the process of turning my story into a book, and they have been wonderful to work with. I’m grateful to my editor Emma Lockley for her sensitive and perceptive editorial help, to Jon Barton for believing in the project from day one, and to Lorna and Shona for getting things moving with our launch plan. Most of all I’m grateful to my readers. Many of you asked for this book, many of you have kept asking for it, and without you this story would never have been told.
About the book
In February 2019, award-winning writer Alex Roddie left his online life behind when he set out to walk 300 miles through the Scottish Highlands, seeking solitude and answers. In leaving the chaos of the internet behind for a month, he hoped to learn how it was truly affecting him – or if he should look elsewhere for the causes of his anxiety.
The Farthest Shore is the story of Alex’s solo trek along the remote Cape Wrath Trail. As he journeyed through a vanishing winter, Alex found answers to his questions, learnt the nature of true silence, and discovered frightening evidence of the threats faced by Scotland’s wild mountain landscape.