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How to Survive a Plague: The Story of How Activists and Scientists Tamed AIDS

How to Survive a Plague: The Story of How Activists and Scientists Tamed AIDS (Paperback)

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Foyles Notes

Winner of the Baillie Gifford Prize for Non-Fiction 2017

At a time when uncertainty, fear and anger are the prevailing emotions, it’s strangely comforting to read a story of how a small but committed band of activists can triumph against the odds. David France had a front row seat (indeed, an active role) in the gruelling battle against AIDS, from the terror of the first few infections to the eventual dawn of hope, as effective treatments were discovered. It’s a big book, with a grim subject matter, but this is a totally riveting read, full of unforgettable characters and with the scale and pace of a big-budget drama. An essential and inspirational account of one of the darkest periods of recent history.

Simon, Marketing Team

Synopsis

Winner of the Baillie Gifford Prize for Non-Fiction. Winner of The Green Carnation Prize for LGBTQ literature. Winner of the Lambda Literary Award for LGBT non-fiction. Shortlisted for the Wellcome Book Prize 2017





'This superbly written chronicle will stand as a towering work in its field' Sunday Times' Inspiring, uplifting and necessary reading' - Steve Silberman author of Neurotribes, Financial Times





How to Survive a Plague by David France is the riveting, powerful and profoundly moving story of the AIDS epidemic and the grass-roots movement of activists, many of them facing their own life-or-death struggles, who grabbed the reins of scientific research to help develop the drugs that turned HIV from a mostly fatal infection to a manageable disease. Around the globe, the 15.8 million people taking anti-AIDS drugs today are alive thanks to their efforts. Not since the publication of Randy Shilts's now classic And the Band Played On in 1987 has a book sought to measure the AIDS plague in such brutally human, intimate, and soaring terms. Weaving together the stories of dozens of individuals, this is an insider's account of a pivotal moment in our history and one that changed the way that medical science is practised worldwide.



David France is the author of Our Fathers, a book about the Catholic sexual abuse scandal, which Showtime adapted into a film. His documentary How to Survive A Plague was a 2012 Oscars nominee, won a Directors Guild Award and a Peabody Award, and was nominated for two Emmys, among other accolades.

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