Musical Truth

Jeffrey Boakye
Illustrated by Ngadi Smart

This extraordinary retelling of black British history will dazzle readers of all ages.

Date Published
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Music can carry the stories of history like a message in a bottle.

Lord Kitchener, Neneh Cherry, Smiley Culture, Stormzy . . . Groundbreaking musicians whose songs have changed the world. But how? This exhilarating playlist tracks some of the key shifts in modern British history, and explores the emotional impact of 28 songs and the artists who performed them.

This book redefines British history, the Empire and postcolonialism, and will invite you to think again about the narratives and key moments in history that you have been taught up to now.

Thrilling, urgent, entertaining and thought-provoking, this beautifully illustrated companion to modern black music is a revelation and a delight.

‘Engaging and accomplished . . . perfectly judged for young readers.’ Guardian

Critic Reviews

Engaging and accomplished... Boakye's text, enriched by Smart's striking images, is perfectly judged for young readers

Critic Reviews

Jeffrey Boakye is a special talent and Musical Truth is a special book... [it] deserves to be read widely by young people

Books for Keeps
Critic Reviews

A fascinating read

The Week Junior
Critic Reviews

A fantastic read... boasting superb illustration from Ngadi Smart

Clash Magazine
Critic Reviews

Thorough and inspiring... Boakye's knowledge and passion shines through... Not just essential reading for older children and teens (and adults!) but essential listening too

Critic Reviews

From Kitch's Windrush optimism to Jords' visceral defiance via John Barnes' rap, this clever and accessible book connects the dots of UK Black history through music. It made me linger on my own memories of these songs and widen my understanding of my family's experiences

Patrice Lawrence, author of Eight Pieces of Silva and Orangeboy

Jeffrey Boakye is an author, broadcaster, educator and journalist with a particular interest in issues surrounding race, masculinity, education and popular culture. Originally from Brixton in London, Jeffrey has taught secondary English for fifteen years. He is senior teaching fellow at the University of Manchester and has been awarded an honorary doctorate from the University of Leicester. Jeffrey’s books include:…

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