Alison Light met the radical social historian, Raphael Samuel, in London in 1986. 20 years her senior, Raphael was a charismatic figure on the British Left, utterly driven by his work and by a commitment to collective politics. Within a year they were married. Within 10, Raphael would be dead. Theirs was an attraction of opposites – he from a Jewish Communist family with its roots in Russia and Eastern Europe, she from the English working class. In this chronicle of a passionate marriage, Alison Light peels back the layers of their time together, its intimacies and its estrangements. She tells of moving into Raphael’s cluttered 18th-century house in Spitalfields and into his equally full, unconventional life; of the whirlwind of change outside their door which transformed London’s old East End districts; of being widowed at 41, and finding inspiration in her friendship with Raphael’s mother.