Deborah James has left the house for the first time in 10 days to celebrate her new book topping the Amazon bestsellers’ list.
The cancer campaigner and podcast host, known online as Bowel Babe, revealed this week that she had completed her second book, titled How To Live When You Could Be Dead. The launch date has been pulled forward from January 2023 to 18 August 2022.
Through pre-orders, the book has now risen to number one – beating The Wim Hof Method by Dutch extreme athlete Hof and The Man Who Died Twice by Richard Osman.
Dame Deborah, who is receiving end-of-life care for her bowel cancer, said her husband Sebastien had taken her on an early morning trip to RHS Garden Wisley, Surrey, as a “well done” for the launch.
Alongside a photo of her sitting in a wheelchair, the 40-year-old wrote: “Seb whisked me (bit of a mission but worth it!) at the crack of dawn to @rhswisley before all the crowds, to say well done for the book launch, and it was just perfect for a hour.
“I haven’t left the house in 10 days as have been too weak, and whilst I’m now going to snooze for most of the day (in the sun like a cat!) – I love this picture of reminding me of vibrant green life all around, despite the sadness of knowing the state of my body inside.
“But Seb is an utter rock for me and together we seem to be able to squeeze our hands, swallow the tears and laugh instead.
“I’m blown away and utterly grateful by the response to the book pre-launch and the sheer numbers of you who have kindly ordered it.
“Not only contributing the @bowelbabefund but also making it number one in the best sellers Amazon list.
“It’s always been my pipe dream to write a Times bestseller. My first book just missed out, so maybe just maybe I’ll never know about this one, but I’m sure I’ll be celebrating somewhere!!”
For each book sold, £3 will go to the BowelBabe fund for Cancer Research UK. The fund, which Dame Deborah launched on 9 May, has raised more than £6.3 million so far – more than 25 times her original target.
In the Instagram post she wrote launching the fund – which she called “the message I never wanted to write” – she told her thousands of followers she had been moved to hospice-at-home care.
“Nobody knows how long I’ve got left but I’m not able to walk, I’m sleeping most of the days, and most things I took for granted are pipe dreams,” she said.
She has been honoured with a damehood for her “tireless campaigning” around cancer, which she was presented with by the Duke of Cambridge at her family home last week.