A vital and honest book exploring the pain of the immigrant experience and the turmoil it can carry across generations, from the winner of the Desmond Elliott Prize
DEREK OWUSU NAMED GRANTA’S BEST OF YOUNG BRITISH NOVELISTS 2023
LONGLISTED FOR THE JHALAK PRIZE 2023
LONGLISTED FOR THE DYLAN THOMAS PRIZE 2023
SHORTLISTED FOR PEOPLE’S BOOK PRIZE - FICTION 2023
LONGLISTED FOR THE DIVERSE BOOK AWARDS 2023
‘A highly enigmatic, affectionate and robustly written portrayal of a mother-son relationship … very relatable’ Diana Evans
Driven by a deep-seated desire to understand his mother’s life before he was born, Derek Owusu offers a powerful imagining of her journey. As she moves from Ghana to the UK and navigates parenthood in a strange and often lonely environment, the effects of her displacement are felt across generations.
Told through the eyes of both mother and son, Losing the Plot is at once emotionally raw and playful as Owusu experiments with form to piece together the immigrant experience and explore how the stories we share and tell ourselves are just as vital as the ones we don’t.
“Masterful … This novel is a reflection of a son attempting to embrace the entirety of his mother – all her vulnerability, spikiness and unknowability. And Owusu does so with extraordinary compassion”
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“A love letter – sometimes dense, often moving – written by a son to his mother”
“A highly enigmatic, affectionate and robustly written portrayal of a mother-son relationship … very relatable”
“Owusu is one of the most original writers today”
“Owusu’s prose is fragmentary and lucid … Losing the Plot is a masterclass in distilled writing and a stirring ode to motherhood”
Derek Owusu is an award-winning writer and poet from North London. He has written for the BBC, ITV, Granta, Esquire, GQ and Tate Britain. In 2019, Owusu collated, edited and contributed to SAFE: On Black British Men Reclaiming Space, an anthology exploring the experiences of Black men in Britain. His first novel, That Reminds Me, won the Desmond Elliott Prize for best debut novel published in the UK and Ireland. In 2023, he was selected as one of Granta’s Best of Young British Novelists.