“One of the big memoirs of the summer” i news
“A potent tale of triumph over adversity. Angry but never bitter, Wheatle’s compassion shines through the pain” Observer
“Alex is a truly gifted storyteller, and the way he details his own story here is no exception” JEFFREY BOAKYE
In this breathtaking memoir, acclaimed writer Alex Wheatle shows how music became his salvation through a childhood marred by abuse.
Abandoned as a baby to the British care system, Alex grows up with no knowledge of his Jamaican parentage or family history. Later, he is inexorably drawn to reggae, his lifeline through disrupted teenage years, the challenges of living as a young Black man in 1980s Britain and his imprisonment for protesting against systemic racism and police brutality.
Alex’s youth was portrayed in Oscar Award-winning director Steve McQueen’s Small Axe series. In Sufferah, he tells his own story, urgently, vividly and unsentimentally. His award-winning fiction – and this memoir – are a call to never give up hope. They remind us that words can be our sustenance, and music our heartbeat.
“Alex Wheatle is the real deal; he writes with heart and authenticity, books that make you laugh and worry and cry and hold your breath” KIT DE WAAL
“Alex Wheatle is an inspirer. He sheds light in dark places . . . He is a vital writer” LEMN SISSAY
“Alex Wheatle writes from a place of honesty and passion” STEVE McQUEEN, director of Small Axe