Crongton Knights by Alex Wheatle
  

The Lovereading4Kids comment

Winner of the Guardian Children's Fiction Prize 2016 Crongton Knights is a very funny, very moving story that shows that although life is testing, the lessons learned the hard way are the ones you'll never forget. It is from the acclaimed author of Liccle Bit.

Alex Wheatle said: “It's just an honour and a privilege to join such a distinguished list of writers and even more overwhelming/mind boggling to learn I am the very first black writer to receive the award in its 50 year history. Chuffed to the max!”

Chair of the judging panel, Julia Eccleshare said: “The judges are delighted to be awarding Alex Wheatle this year’s Guardian Children’s Book Prize. Crongton Knights is a wonderfully life-affirming story despite the all-too credible challenges its characters face. Alex Wheatle really likes and believes in teenagers. He captures their energy, positivity and exuberance and, with them, celebrates the value of family, community and above all friendship as the sustaining forces in life.”

Crongton Knights is the first in a trilogy - the second book, Straight Outta Crongton, is out on 6th April 2017.

Synopsis

Crongton Knights by Alex Wheatle

Living on the South Crongton council estate has its worries - and life for McKay has been even tougher since his mum died. His dad has been working all hours to keep the bailiffs from their door. His brother is always out riding the streets at night, tempting trouble. And now, having strayed off his turf on a 'heroic' (if misguided) mission to help out a girl, McKay finds himself facing a friend's crazy ex-boyfriend, some power-tripping hood-rats and a notoriously violent gangster with a vendetta which hits too close to home. Poor McKay. He never asked for trouble ...But during one madcap night of adventure and danger, he will find out who his true friends are and what it means to stick with your family.

Reviews

[This] will soon be on school reading lists and examination syllabuses everywhere, as it has classic singing from every page ... A joyous shout of youthful exuberance ... Wheatle's Twain-like command of patois never falters ... Enriching and life-affirming ... A total gem for any age. Independent

About the Author

Alex Wheatle

Born in 1963 to Jamaican parents living in Brixton, Alex Wheatle spent most of his childhood in a Surrey children's home. He returned to Brixton in 1977 where he founded the Crucial Rocker sound system and performed his own songs and lyrics under the name of Yardman Irie. He spent a short stint in prison following the Brixton uprising of 1981. Following his release from prison he continued to write poems and lyrics and became known as the Brixton Bard.

Alex's first novel, Brixton Rock, was published to critical acclaim in 1999. Five more novels, East of Acre Lane, The Seven Sisters, Island Songs, Checkers and The Dirty South followed, all highly praised. His books are on school reading lists, Alex takes part in Black History Month every year, works with Streatham Youth Community Trust, helping to run a homework club. He is representing English PEN, and tours the country with his one-man show, Uprising. He teaches in various places including Lambeth College, holds workshops in prisons and is frequently invited to schools to speak to students, inspiring in them with his own story a passion for literature.

Alex also appears regularly on BBC1's The One Show and on radio. In the autumn of 2010 he wrote and performed his own one-man autobiographical show for Tara Arts, Uprising, and took the performance on tour in October 2012. He was at Harrogate Crime Writing Festival in July 2011. He was awarded an MBE in the Queen's Birthday Honours list for services to literature in 2008. A favourite of reading groups and libraries, he is UK's most read Black British author. He is working on a non-fiction book about Black Britain and on more Young Adult novels. He lives with his family in South London.

photo credit: James Drew Turner for the Guardian

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Book Info

Format

Paperback
304 pages

Author

Alex Wheatle
More books by Alex Wheatle

Publisher

ATOM an imprint of Little, Brown Book Group

Publication date

3rd March 2016

ISBN

9780349002323

Categories


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