Alex ‘Brixtonbard’ Wheatle, author of six critically acclaimed novels to date, and honoured in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List 2008, with an MBE for services to literature. His debut novel was Brixton Rock, then came the award-winning East of Acre Lane (London New Writers Award 2000), The Seven Sisters, Checker and Island Songs. Island Songs was a great success in Jamaica and is now a bestseller in the country.
Alex Wheatle was born in 1963 to Jamaican parents living in London. He spent most of his childhood in a children’s home, leaving at 14 to live in a hostel in Brixton. At 18, he was involved in the Brixton uprising and went to prison for 3 months. On his release, he continued to DJ and MC under the name Yardman Irie, with a sound system in the late 1970’s early 1980’s.
He then moved in the early ’90s on to the performance poetry circuit as The Brixton Bard. Two of his novels, East Of Acre Lane & Island Songs, have been translated into French, and in Paris he is known as the Barde du Brixton (the Brixtonbard)
‘Alex Wheatle weaves witty patois dialogue and cool, crisp narrative into a tone of playful irony, wholly free of rant or rancour’ Daily Telegraph