Creative Access book club selfie with author Kieran Yates

A year in books: Creative Access Book Club 2023

Posted on December 21, 2023

The Creative Access Book Club has come together to read and discuss eight books in 2023. These events – open to our community of mentees, interns, and alumni – have been a unique way to start conversations about new writing by authors from backgrounds that are historically under-represented in publishing.  

Here are all the books we read in 2023:  

  • Lemon by Kwon Yeo-sun. Head of Zeus.  
  • Just Sayin‘ by Malorie Blackman. Merky Books Penguin Random House.   
  • Hungry Ghosts by Kevin Jared Hosein. Bloomsbury Publishing.  
  • All the Houses I’ve Ever Lived In by Kieran Yates. Simon & Schuster.  
  • Close to Home by Michael Magee. Hamilton Hamilton Penguin Random House.  
  • Pulling the Chariot of the Sun by Shane McCrae. Canongate.   
  • Dispatches from the Diaspora by Gary Younge. Faber.   
  • Edge of Here by Kelechi Okafor. Orion, Hachette.  

This year: 

  • 194 people were sent books and attended our meetings 
  • We interviewed 2 authors about their new books: Kevin Jared Hosein (who dialled in from Trinidad to talk about his novel Hungry Ghosts!) and journalist Kieran Yates who joined our book club to discuss her debut book on housing.  
  • Our book picks spanned the world with authors of 5 nationalities including Nigerian, Korean, Trinidadian, USA and British authors from under-represented backgrounds.  
  • We worked with 8 different publishers or imprints, including independent publishers like Canongate and Faber alongside Penguin Random House, Bloomsbury, HarperCollins, and Simon & Schuster.  

A standout moment of the year has been a live interview with author and journalist Kieran Yates, before our discussion on All the Houses I’ve Ever Lived In, her urgent but often joyful book on homes and the housing crisis. This was our first collaboration with Simon & Schuster, and being among the first readers to speak to Kieran directly about her book was an amazing experience.  

Our virtual book club on Kelechi Okafor’s new collection of speculative fiction Edge of Here.

A calendar of events that includes virtual meetings has continued to be the best way to make sure the book clubs can reach people outside of London and suit different access requirements, while in-person events are a fantastic opportunity for our community of creative industry professionals or those aspiring to be to meet and connect with peers.  

Our first in-person meet for 2023 on Malorie Blackman’s memoir Just Sayin’.

‘Brilliantly run – such a thoughtful and creative space to share our reflections on the book. I learned lots from everyone’s takes!’ – Book club attendee.  

Finally, we want to give a massive thank you to the publishers who have made the Creative Access book club possible and to the readers who came and provoked thoughtful conversation with their opinions and impressions. We’re looking forward to another book club-packed year in 2024.  

We’re always looking for new book club partners. As well as discussing the book, we’ll run a giveaway across our socials and make sure you get plenty of coverage across our community. So if you’d like to nominate a title by an author from an historically under-represented community (and you can post out 20-30 copies to attendees) please get in touch at