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  • Published: 16 July 2024
  • ISBN: 9781529919967
  • Imprint: Vintage
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 240
  • RRP: $24.99

Arrangements in Blue

Notes on Love and Making a Life

Is it possible life without romantic love isn't so bad?

An essential memoir about building life on your own terms

Is it possible life without romantic love isn't so bad?

An essential memoir about building life on your own terms


'The book I've been waiting for my entire life'
DOLLY ALDERTON, author of Everything I Know About Love

'Marks an important shift in ideas about intimacy'

'The harbinger of real talent'

When poet Amy Key was growing up, she looked forward to a life shaped by romance, fuelled by desire, longing and the conventional markers of success that come when you share a life with another person. But that didn't happen for her. Now in her forties, she sets out to explore the realities of a life lived in the absence of romantic love.

Using Joni Mitchell's seminal album Blue - which shaped Key's expectations of love - as an anchor, Arrangements in Blue elegantly honours a life lived completely by, and for, oneself. Building a home, travelling alone, choosing whether to be a mother, recognising her own milestones, learning the limits of self-care and the expansive potential of self-friendship, Key uncovers the many forms of connection and care that often go unnoticed.

With profound candour and intimacy, Arrangements in Blue explores the painful feelings we are usually too ashamed to discuss: loneliness, envy, grief and failure. The result is a book which inspires us to live and love more honestly.

  • Published: 16 July 2024
  • ISBN: 9781529919967
  • Imprint: Vintage
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 240
  • RRP: $24.99

About the author

Amy Key

Amy Key is a poet and writer based in London. She is the author of two collections of poetry, Luxe and Isn't Forever, which was a Poetry Book Society Wild Card Choice and a Book of the Year in the Guardian, New Statesman and The Times. Her poems have been widely published and anthologised, and her essays have appeared in At the Pond, Granta, the Poetry Review and elsewhere.

Praise for Arrangements in Blue

I love Amy Key.

Lauren Laverne

From grief to anger to full-throttled joy, Amy Key hits every note of feeling with perfect pitch... A brave and brilliant exploration of how one woman lives both alone and alongside romance. An absolutely gorgeous work.

Heather Christle, author of The Crying Book

In Arrangements in Blue Amy Key finds a language, searing in its depth and honesty, for desire, shame, grief and, crucially, for compassion.

Kayo Chingonyi, A Blood Condition

A beautiful, painful, liberating book. Amy Key writes with such tenderness and insight.

Olivia Laing, author of The Lonely City

There is a whole life pulsing within these pages, written with both clarity and eloquence... A book to be read in astonishment and in admiration. Bewitching.

Doireann Ní Ghríofa, author of A Ghost in the Throat

Profound and poetic, vulnerable yet brave, I devoured Amy Key's memoir about love, loss, memory and hope. An incredible writer, a stunning debut.

Lisa McGee, creator of Derry Girls

Deeply moving... A study of love - platonic and romantic, lost and found - Amy's memoir demonstrates the power of music on forming a self.


Amy Key's extraordinary Arrangements in Blue isn't merely a commentary on Joni Mitchell's Blue, but something bolder, more personal and shape-shifting... It makes itself up on its own terms. An intimate, absorbing inquiry.

Paul Lisicky, author of Later: My Life at the Edge of the World

Amy Key writes with rare integrity, courage and style... A beautiful and necessary book.

Sarah Perry, author of The Essex Serpent

An exquisite book whose beauty sweetly stung me. Amy writes just like Joni sings... with ecstatic feminine power.

May-Lan Tan, author of Things to Make and Break

A gorgeous manifesto for a solo life, the power of music and friendships and a reckoning with the possibilities of love and fulfilment.

Sinéad Gleeson, author of Constellations

Arrangements in Blue took my breath away... Even in the process of reading it for the first time I knew it would be a book I would return to again and again.

Sophie Mackintosh, author of Blue Ticket

A seriously beautiful and important work I feel lucky to have encountered and which will change how many think about love in all its iterations.

Megan Nolan, author of Acts of Desperation

Filled with lyrical turns of phrase, this insightful take on living solo will appeal to poets, dreamers and anyone marching to the beat of their own drum. It's a lush and moving memoir.

Publishers Weekly, *Starred Review*

Combines memoir with gentle manifesto, investigating our cultural obsession with coupledom... It transforms the hyper-personal into a tender, universal portrait of fashioning a life on your own terms.


Marks an important shift in ideas about intimacy and solitude.


This raw, gorgeous, pulsing memoir the harbinger of a real talent.

Sunday Times

Arrangements in Blue is as bold as it is beautiful. Key is not afraid to go to the depths of her longings, but in doing so she creates something new: a space for the voice of solitude, one that is full of heart and creativity for a personal intimacy with home, friends and the self. If a book can be a loving companion, this is it.

Lily Dunn, author of Sins of my Father

A beautiful memoir about a life lived without romantic love... Key seems less interested in the privileges that divide us than in the forms of love that can unite us, whatever they may be, and expand our understanding of what it means to have a life well lived.


Fearless... Wonderfully, Key's prose retains all the intimacy of her verse. Arrangements in Blue is a tender, subversive study of love in its myriad forms.

New Statesman

Arrangements in Blue is a short read, but each page feels so full and worth savouring.


A unique, intimate memoir about building a beautiful life without prioritising romantic love, or focusing on received ideas of success.


This memoir may do for you what Blue has done for her Key, putting your unexpressed feelings into beautiful words and helping you feel connected to the world.


Beautifully written

Financial Times

A startlingly honest account of long-term singledom hits a courageous sweet spot, tackling the issue with heart… Her singular voice on this (almost) taboo subject is to be celebrated.

Sunday Times, *Books of the Year*

Amy Key’s Arrangements in Blue has been comforting while going through a separation, it revises the societal position of singlehood, especially for childless women and gloriously channels the atmospheric album Blue by Joni Mitchell.

Raymond Antrobus, author of The Perseverance

The book I've been waiting for my entire life. Utterly beautiful and funny and true.

Dolly Alderton, author of Everything I Know About Love