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Don’t miss your chance to get a copy of Open Water with your ticket for just £12.99 (RRP).

Penguin Live in partnership with The British Library are thrilled to present Caleb Azumah Nelson in conversation.

Join Caleb Azumah Nelson as he discusses his highly anticipated debut novel Open Water. It’s a stunning, spellbinding story about two Black British artists falling in and out of love. Caleb will be in conversation about this achingly beautiful love story, which also gives a potent insight into race and masculinity.

Caleb will speak about his writing process, how London influences his work whilst also touching on the themes of the book including art, love, police violence and black masculinity. He'll be in conversation with poet and playwright Yomi Sode. 

This is your chance to hear from the author behind one of the most hotly tipped books for 2021. And to pose your own questions directly to him.

This event will be hosted via Zoom webinar. You will be sent your personal link to login 48 hours before the event.

Please note, tickets for this event are non-refundable.

This event will be recorded and sent to all bookers the day after the event. It will be available to watch for 7 days.

If you have bought a book with your ticket, you will receive your copy in the 10 days after the event.

Caleb Azumah Nelson is a 26-year-old British-Ghanaian writer and photographer living in South East London. His writing has been published in Litro. He was recently shortlisted for the Palm Photo Prize and won the People's Choice prize. OPEN WATER is his first novel.

  • Open Water

  • 'A tender and touching love story, beautifully told' Observer 10 Best Debut Novelists of 2021

    'A beautiful and powerful novel about the true and sometimes painful depths of love' Candice Carty-Williams, bestselling author of QUEENIE


    'An unforgettable debut... it's Sally Rooney meets Michaela Coel meets Teju Cole' New York Times

    'A love song to Black art and thought' Yaa Gyasi, bestselling author of HOMEGOING and TRANSCENDENT KINGDOM

    Two young people meet at a pub in South East London. Both are Black British, both won scholarships to private schools where they struggled to belong, both are now artists - he a photographer, she a dancer - trying to make their mark in a city that by turns celebrates and rejects them. Tentatively, tenderly, they fall in love. But two people who seem destined to be together can still be torn apart by fear and violence.

    At once an achingly beautiful love story and a potent insight into race and masculinity, Open Water asks what it means to be a person in a world that sees you only as a Black body, to be vulnerable when you are only respected for strength, to find safety in love, only to lose it. With gorgeous, soulful intensity, Caleb Azumah Nelson has written the most essential British debut of recent years.

    'An amazing debut novel. You should read this book. Let's hear it for Caleb Azumah Nelson, also known as the future' Benjamin Zephaniah

    'A very touching and heartfelt book' Diana Evans, award-winning author of ORDINARY PEOPLE

    'A lyrical modern love story, brilliant on music and art, race and London life, I enjoyed it hugely' David Nicholls, author of ONE DAY and SWEET SORROW

    'Caleb is a star in the making' Nikesh Shukla, editor of THE GOOD IMMIGRANT and BROWN BABY

    'A stunning piece of art' Bolu Babalola, bestselling author of LOVE IN COLOUR

    'For those that are missing the tentative depiction of love in Normal People, Caleb Azumah Nelson's Open Water is set to become one of 2021's unmissable books. Utterly transporting, it'll leave you weeping and in awe.' Stylist

    '
    An exhilarating new voice in British fiction' Vogue

    '
    A poetic novel about Black identity and first love in the capital from one of Britain's most exciting young voices' Harper's Bazaar

    'An intense, elegant debut' Guardian

  • Buy the book

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