Joe All Alone by Joanna Nadin

Joe All Alone

Written by Joanna Nadin

11+ readers   eBooks   

The Lovereading4Kids comment

A heartwarming, humorous, issue novel for 10+ readers about a young boy left home alone.


Joe All Alone by Joanna Nadin

When thirteen-year-old Joe is left behind in Peckham while his mum flies to Spain on holiday, he decides to treat it as an adventure, and a welcome break from Dean, her latest boyfriend. Joe begins to explore his neighbourhood, making a tentative friendship with Asha, a fellow fugitive hiding out at her grandfather's flat. But when the food and money run out, his mum doesn't come home, and the local thugs catch up with him, Joe realises time is running out too, and makes a decision that will change his life forever. Deeply poignant, deceptively simple, this book will cut the reader to the bone almost without their realising it. Imogen Russell-Williams, Teens On Moon Lane


Poignant, funny, and utterly unputdownable, Joe All Alone paints a picture of child poverty, neglect and abuse that is somehow life-affirming and heart-warming - even while it will break your heart. The brightly coloured cast of characters, from Otis the Jamaican bus-driver to Asha the girl with a big imagination and heart to match, contrast with the grim, grey reality of life for a thirteen year old kid trying to survive on a tough inner city estate. But it is Joe himself - brave, clever, resilient but also vulnerable and broken - who readers will fall in love with. There is a beautiful simplicity and lyricism to this book which make it incredibly moving and I absolutely loved it! Perfect for fans of Phil Earle or 'Fifteen Days Without a Head'. -- Catherine Bruton, author of I Predict A Riot and We Can Be Heroes. A real boy's voice, nailed hard to a tale rich with wrong decisions, hopeless plans and stabs at redemption. I loved it. -- Steve Cole Frightening and funny, bleak and tender, serious and surprising, Joe All Alone is a gem of a book that catches the heart and lifts the spirits (just like a flock of parakeets in Peckham!). -- Tanya Landman A gripping, heart-warming contemporary story about a young teenager forced to make difficult decisions in order to survive. Book Trust This book highlights the best and worst of humanity while tackling these highs and lows from the beautiful, naive, vulnerable perspective of a child. A fascinating and heart-warming read for teen readers Joe All Alone will leave you longing to protect Joe and give him a big hug and you may learn to appreciate a few things about yourself and your parents that you hadn't noticed before. -- Laura Iredale Warning - not only will you need tissues when you read this book but you'll also need to hug someone repeatedly and be hugged yourself. And you're going to want to talk about it and possibly miss meals. Don't say I didn't warn you! -- Rhian Ivory

About the Author

Joanna Nadin

Joanna Nadin is a winner of the Fantastic Book Award, the Surrey Book Award, Blue Peter 'Book of the Month' and Radio 4 Open Book 'Book of the Year'. She has been shortlisted for the Booktrust Best Book Award and Queen of Teen, and Spies, Dad, Big Lauren and Me was selected for the Richard and Judy Book Club. In 2011, Penny Dreadful is a Magnet for Disaster was shortlisted for the Roald Dahl Funny Prize. Joe All Alone was nominated for the 2016 C ILIP C arnegie Medal. She writes the Flying Fergus series with Sir Chris Hoy. Joanna previously worked as a policy writer for the Labour Party and a special adviser to the Prime Minister. She continues to freelance as a speechwriter and editor, and lectures in Creative Writing at Bath Spa University.

Click here to read more about JOANNA NADIN and her writing.

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Book Info


240 pages


Joanna Nadin
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Little, Brown Young Readers an imprint of Hachette Children's Group

Publication date

7th May 2015




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