Disappearing: The Story of a Modern Would-Be Nomad, The People he Upset and the Many Who Died

You may assume that most of this book is fantasy, but the facts check out. You sense that the author has been there, from rock climbing to Van Gogh, from flamenco to the Biafran war, from begging in Winchester to travelling through the Sahara. Much of the story may be true. It could even mostly be true. More

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About Chris Heal

Most of the author’s biography, including his many names, is explained within Disappearing. ‘Heal’ went to grammar school in the West Midlands, supporting himself through a window cleaning business and by digging ditches for Britain’s new motorways. He was a leading rock climber and, later, a SCUBA diving instructor. He travelled extensively in his younger years, usually by hitchhiking, through much of Europe, North Africa and the Near and Middle East, reaching India. He briefly joined the RAF and then trained as an airline pilot. He quit and was off the radar for a year. He resurfaced as a journalist and then joined IBM for twenty years, five of them in Africa, and later led the multi-million pound buy-out of their UK marketing department. He was chairman of the regional theatre In Basingstoke, worked as an oak furniture designer and maker, and advised and funded internet start-ups and small businesses. He received a doctorate in history from Bristol University, aged sixty-five. Aspects of his thesis ‒ academically reviewed as ‘first-rate, well-written with immensely impressive scholarship’ ‒ were turned into a variety of publications with over 5,000 sales. In 2018, he wroteSound of Hunger, a well-received social history of the lives of two German brothers, u-boat captains in the First World War.

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