Gun Baby Gun

Gun Baby Gun
Published : 16 Apr 2015 - Canongate
In some places, it's easier to get a gun than a clean glass of water. In some places, you are allowed to carry concealed firearms into schools. In some places, there are more guns than people to shoot them. There are almost one billion guns across the globe today - more than ever before. There are 12 billion bullets produced every year - almost two bullets for every person on this earth. And as many as 500,000 people are killed by them ever year worldwide. The gun's impact is long-reaching and often hidden. And it doesn't just involve the dead, the wounded, the suicidal and the mourning. It involves us all. The pain caused by a gunshot does not end with the pulling of the trigger. That is just the beginning.

Gun Baby Gun takes the award-winning investigative journalist Iain Overton on a shocking and eye-opening journey to over 25 countries, from South Africa to Iceland, Honduras to Cambodia. Meeting people affected by guns from all walks of life - porn starlets who appear as snipers in XXX films, Zionist anti-terror gun trainers, El Salvadoran gangland killers, South African doctors soaked in the blood of gunshot victims - he unearths some hard truths about the terrible realities of war and gun crime. Harrowing and sobering, it's a riveting exposé that anyone with even the smallest interest in how the world really works will want to read.


A brilliantly researched journey, capturing the gun's strangely accepted place in human life and, far too often, death.

Jon Snow, Channel 4 news

A gripping book that's as disturbing as it is enlightening.

Charlie Burton, GQ

A shocking investigation into our fatal love affair with the firearm.


Adventurous, ambitiously tracing the often devastating impact of guns around the world... punctuated with thoughtful discussions on issues such as the second amendment to the US constitution, and women's attitudes towards guns, and contains moments of great poignancy.

Financial Times

Chilling... relentlessly engrossing.


A shocking book about the terrible realities of war and weapons.

Scotland's Sunday Mail

Overton’s style is factual and uncompromising. Gun Baby Gun is a must read for politicians, activists and academics alike.

Robert Muggah

Overton presents a compelling argument for gun control...relentlessly engrossing.

The Spectator

The facts in this riveting book are enough to make your jaw drop...Overton is well placed to examine the role of guns in today’s society...he brings to this book a balance and veracity that make it a startling and often depressing read...This book is more than just facts, it’s insight and revelation on a very human level.


Often dispassionate and aims at nuance, its central conclusion - that we live in a world awash with guns, the consequences of which are largely bleak - is well embedded from the start... Overton has a journalist's eye for blending anecdote and statistics in service of a broader narrative. Gun Baby Gun covers a great deal of ground, touching on Salvadoran gang violence, Israel's settlements in theWest Bank and the American gun lobby. Its scope is admirable.

The Skinny

Iain Overton’s starkly controlled prose allows us an insight into the emotions that come when we witness a shooting, and puts a human face on what often becomes just another statistic... one of the most thought-provoking books you’ll read this year.

The National

Overton’s comprehensive study of an increasingly weaponized world provides timely and vital reading.


‘This illuminating narrative about the life cycle of the gun is comprehensive, revealing, and timely.’

Publisher's Weekly

This important book on the place of firearms in the modern era will attract readers interested in contemporary world affairs, U.S. gun rights and gun culture.

Library Journal

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