Stephen is the author of the Booker Prize shortlisted Pigeon English, a novel that explores gang violence on a South London estate from the perspective of an 11 year old Ghanaian immigrant. At one level Pigeon English follows the conventions of the traditional murder mystery. But by virtue of a unique narrative perspective - and because said mystery is based on the actual murder of schoolboy Damilola Taylor – the novel offers a much wider-reaching exploration of both its subject and the narrative potential of the form. It is a set text on the GCSE syllabus and is also used by a number of literacy campaigns in prisons, work which Stephen continues to support.
Stephen will discuss the themes and continued relevance of Pigeon English, and more broadly about the experience of crime and criminality among young people and the issues involved in addressing this in fiction.