I bought All Day Long when it was published in 2015; I distinctly remember ordering it online with great enthusiasm following a recommendation from somewhere. As with all parcels, I waited impatiently for its arrival. I then put it on a shelf, where it sat patiently for eight years while I never quite felt in the mood to read it.
In 2015, I was interested in the basic premise of the book: Biggs interviews people in various different jobs about their work and what it means to them. Finally reading it, I was pleased to find it does more, drawing out insightful connections between its subjects, and to the state of British politics and the economy. The result is a compelling and fascinating exploration of modern working life, with Biggs finding an excellent balance between her subjects’ voices and her own.
Of course, this was eight years ago, with the effects of the financial crisis still being keenly felt and the coalition government ripping through the social safety net unrestrained by a Lib Dem component happy to sell the vulnerable into destitution for the 5p carrier bag charge. The broader observations Biggs makes must surely now be out of date, right?
All Day Long is still hugely relevant to working life in 2023, a fact so depressing I can only award it no stars. ☆☆☆☆☆
All Day Long is still available in paperback and ebook formats. Concidentally, Biggs’s next book, A Life of One’s Own, is published in May 2023 and available for pre-order now.