One of Val McDermid’s selected writers for the International Literature Showcase
“Marries nature writing with his struggle to reject the binary and accept his internal contradictions.”
– Val McDermid
A writer exploring complexities and seeking nuance in binary times
Luke Turner’s first book Out of the Woods is a critically-acclaimed memoir that explores sexuality, shame and surviving sexual abuse against the backdrop of the landscape of Epping Forest. Along the way, it asks questions of how we conceive of ‘nature’, both in terms of the world around us and human behaviour. Turner is co-founder and editor of influential online music culture magazine The Quietus as well as a freelance writer and broadcaster. In 2019 he is co-curator of The People’s Forest. Part of London’s first Borough of Culture, this year-long artistic programme explores the complex relationship between city and woodland.
“Out of the Woods is a brave and beautiful book, electrifying on sex and nature, religion and love. No one is writing quite like this. I’m so glad Luke Turner exists.” – Olivia Laing
“Turner’s memoir succeeds at many levels. It offers no fake epiphanies or grand statements. But, as all gastroenterologists know, it suggests it would be a grave error to think of forests as external to us. We carry the forest with us, inside us. We are the forest.” The Guardian
“Out of the Woods is a book full of poetry and pathos. More than anything it is a bold and beautiful study of how to be a true modern man” The Spectator
“Out of the Woods had me hooked. Refreshing, frank, edifying, courageous . . . I was quite emotional by the end. Luke Turner is a serious thinker and a unique and important new voice” Amy Liptrot
“Truly beautiful prose… the candour and insightful scholarship Turner brings to his subject make it a very worthwhile read” Grub Smith, Literary Review
Writing Out of the Woods was an attempt to shine light on the oft-overlooked and misunderstood bisexual experience , so I’m chuffed to be chosen by Val McDermid as an LGBTQI+ writer for the International Literature Showcase. I look forward to seeing where it takes me.
- 2019 – Out of the Woods (Weidenfeld & Nicolson)
- 2019 – Tracks (Rough Trade Books pamphelt)
- 2018 – The Good Purvider (Windswept Baby pamphlet / collaboration, V&A)
Weidenfeld & Nicolson, publicist Virginia Woolstencroft
Image credit Eva Vermandel