3PB barrister and author Sarah Langford’s planned “clarion call” book about farming sparks publishers’ auction

7th May 2020

Publishers Viking has scooped an “urgent clarion call” for the British farming industry by 3PB criminal and family barrister Sarah LangfordSarah LangfordCall: 2005 in a three-way auction. “For a Love of the Land” will be published in spring 2022 and follows Sarah’s hugely successful debut book, and Sunday Times bestseller, “In Your Defence: Stories of Life and Law”.

Sarah Langford was a barrister for 10 years, working in criminal and family law in London and around the UK, before turning her hand to journalism as well and the book drew on her highly variable experiences of the justice and courts system. She has been on sabbatical and is presently on maternity leave from 3PB.

The new book was inspired when Sarah, who is from a farming background, moved back to the countryside and found herself thrust back into an agricultural life she had left behind as a teenager. She found her farming friends “beleaguered with fierce criticism from the vegan and environmentalist movements, facing uncertainty in the wake of Brexit, and now hit with the Covid-19 pandemic”.

In “For a Love of the Land”, the bestselling barrister-turned-writer follows a selection of farmers from across the UK through the seasons, capturing a slice of agricultural history at a time of unprecedented change. Through their stories, she seeks to humanise an industry so often scapegoated and misunderstood. She shows us what we can learn from farmers about currently fashionable ideas like sustainability, self-sufficiency and living closely with nature, and what will be lost if their farms are unable to survive in the future.

Sarah said: “There are few better feelings than pouring your heart into a project, and then finding someone who shares your passion for it. Viking immediately saw how my own farming background and my time as a barrister could combine in this book. Through telling the stories of our farmers I hope to do what I did every day in a courtroom: take people into a world so often misunderstood by those outside it.”

A spokesman from Viking added: “Sarah Langford is a brilliantly sharp yet sensitive writer with the empathy and determination to bridge the widening gap in understanding between city and country. This is going to be both a perfect armchair read – roaming through rolling fields and fruitful orchards with a host of unforgettable characters – and an urgent clarion call for the British farming industry, at a time where these voices aren’t being heard.”

To contact Sarah's clerk, please email Stuart Pringle on stuart.pringle@3pb.co.uk