Becky Hardie, Deputy Publishing Director at Chatto & Windus, has acquired UK and Commonwealth (ex. Canada) rights to LOWBORN: Growing Up, Getting Away and Returning to Britain’s Poorest Towns by award-winning novelist Kerry Hudson. Rights were bought from Juliet Pickering at Blake Friedman as part of a two book deal.
LOWBORN is a deeply personal book which will see Hudson return to the towns she grew up in around the UK: she lived in seven places before the age of 15, in a succession of council estates and B&Bs for the homeless, where she attended nine primary schools and five secondary schools. In returning to these places, she hopes to uncover long buried truths about her own life but also seeks to illuminate what life is really like for Britain’s poorest today. Hudson brings her own experiences and her authentic voice to one of the most urgent and pressing issues of our times.
Kerry Hudson will document her journey around the country for the Pool where she will be a regular contributor in the lead up to publication of Lowborn in January 2019. Her first piece will run on Wednesday 25 October. You can also follow her on Twitter: @thatkerryhudson.
Kerry Hudson comments: ‘To write a book like this, and begin to try and answer questions I’ve had since my youth, is truly something I never imagined might happen. Alongside my own story, Lowborn will also tell those of so many in the UK who are often overlooked, exploring subjects that I feel desperately need to be highlighted. I’m incredibly happy to work once again with Chatto & Windus and with an editor as brilliant and astute as Becky knowing they feel as passionately as I do that these are stories that need to be given voice.’
Becky Hardie comments: ‘Using her own troubled childhood as a map, Kerry Hudson’s Lowborn will take a hard look at what it means to be poor in post-Brexit Britain. We are so proud to be Kerry’s publisher – she is a force for good in our world – and Lowborn will be a crucially important, timely and affecting book. We need this book, just as we need Kerry Hudson.’
Kerry Hudson was born in Aberdeen. Her first novel, Tony Hogan Bought Me An Ice-Cream Float Before He Stole My Ma (Chatto & Windus, 2012) was the winner of the Scottish First Book Award and was shortlisted for the Southbank Sky Arts Literature Award, Guardian First Book Award, Green Carnation Prize, the Author’s Club First Novel Prize and the Polari First Book Award. Kerry’s second novel, Thirst (Chatto & Windus, 2014), won France’s most prestigious award for foreign fiction the Prix Femina Etranger.
Kerry founded The WoMentoring Project and has written for Grazia, Guardian Review, Observer New Review, Metro and YOU magazine. She has represented the British Council in South Korea, mentored with IdeasTap Inspires and TLC, teaches for the Arvon Foundation and was commissioned by the Writers’ Centre Norwich to give a provocation on diversity as part of their ‘National Conversation’ series.