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‘No one expected this virus, but no one could have imagined the response. What a book!’ were the comments of Professor Polly Roy, one of the foremost virologists in the UK and Chair of Virology at The London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine.
Together: An Anthology from the COVID-19 Pandemic, is a first of its kind collection of human experiences from the 2020 pandemic which includes stories of many brave hearts who contributed to safeguarding humanity.
What is more fascinating is that the producers of the book, Dr Pauldy Otermans and Dev Aditya have declared that all proceeds from its sale will go to support the NHS and other frontline services still battling the virus globally.
They will not even be taking back the sum they have personally invested in the project to maximise funding flow. Several senior and renowned academics like Professor Clare Brant and Professor William Leahy have contributed to the book along with celebrated poets like Benjamin Zephaniah, former advisers to the US Government and even Paralympians like Ryan Raghoo. There are contributions from 60 other inspirational authors from five continents that make this piece of work truly broad and inclusive.
Professor Julia Buckingham, a renowned biochemist and President of Universities UK said: ‘Much will be written about the COVID-19 pandemic in the future, but few accounts will capture the experiences, emotions and fantastic contributions of individuals in the way this volume does.’
This book comprises of a collection of poems, prose, letters, and personal reflections of people from the height of the pandemic along with several stories of heroic efforts made by individuals and reflections from industry and civic leaders on how the world is rapidly changing following the pandemic.
The book also comprises of an equal number of unique art pieces from independent artists who have inspired their art from their own reflections of the pandemic and the titles of the literary contributions of the book. The book’s contributors come from diverse backgrounds, genders and ethnicities where the youngest author is seven and the oldest contributor is in his nineties. We believe it is a truly inclusive body of work that is a collective representation of the unity humanity has shown during the pandemic.
The entire book was produced in 40 days, from requesting the first contributions to the final book output of more than 40 pages, to make it ready as early as possible to start the fundraising process. Pauldy and Dev are indebted to the amount of support they received from across the world, from design support to editing, art and communication support, to make this project come to life within this narrow timeline. Both of them, also run a social enterprise called Otermans Institute to upskill rural students in India and Nepal in professional development and employability skills with no costs incurred by the students.
Dev Aditya had gone to start the training process for 25,000 students in the Himalayan state of Uttarakhand, India in March where he got stuck due to the country’s lockdown and international travel restrictions. Despite this, both worked around time differences and purely by digital means to bring this book to life. Dev remains there today and hopes to be able to return to the UK soon.
Any reader who purchases this book will not only be awed by the collection of incredible text that will be a treat to read, but they will also get a piece of human history that is worthy of passing on to the next generations. Together: An Anthology from the COVID-19 Pandemic utilises the collective voice of humanity to continue funding the international war against the virus until humanity can collectively defeat it, once and for all, globally. Sir Richard Sykes in the foreword of the book says that this makes it ‘a totally unique and noble publication’.
You can pre-order the book on Amazon. This will not only help raise funds for our NHS, but pre-ordering will also rank the book higher on its launch date, on 2nd July, helping showcase it to even more people.
Image credit: Freepik
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