Ashleigh Nugent


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27 June 2024
ISBN: 9781529097917
352 pages

From the publisher

A coming-of-age comedy of errors, Locks is an electric debut novel about growing up, wising up and finding your place in the world.

'A rollicking debut' - Telegraph
'A necessary exploration of identity and belonging' - Derek Owusu, author of That Reminds Me

In Ashleigh Nugent's dynamic coming-of-age comedy of errors, Locks, teenager Aeon is on a quest for belonging.

Locks is the story of Aeon, a mixed-up and mixed-race teenager from a leafy Liverpool suburb, who is desperate to find his Black roots and understand the Black identity foisted upon him by his community. To his growing shame, the only Black people in his life are his dad and his cousin, Increase – but they don’t count. Aeon’s dad is intent on ignoring race and climbing the social ladder. And Increase has taken to demeaning all Black culture since the shady and unresolved death of his own father, a ‘Yardie’ gangster.

Aeon’s quest seems set to be fulfilled when he and Increase travel to Jamaica. But Aeon soon finds that smoking loads of weed, growing messy dreadlocks and wearing massive red boots don’t, necessarily, help him to fit in. He gets mugged, stabbed, arrested and banged up in a Jamaican detention centre, where he is beaten unconscious for being the ‘White boy’. And then things really start to go wrong . . .