Jayne Joso

Jayne Joso is a British novelist, playwright, writer and artist. Having lived and worked in Japan, China and Kenya she now lives in the UK. She received her first play commission in China. Written to celebrate Children’s Day, the play: China’s Smile, enjoyed a long theatre run and was later televised. Her poetic children’s book How Do You Feel? was published in Japan and has been reprinted numerous times. In 2012, she was awarded the Coracle International Writer’s Residency in Ireland. In 2013 her poem ‘Desire’ was purchased as part of the Abe’s Penny Archive by MoMA, New York; and by the Brooklyn Museum in 2014, for their permanent collections.

Her first novel, Soothing Music for Stray Cats (2009, Alcemi) explores the lives of disaffected city dwellers, and was heralded as ‘the debut of a distinctive voice in contemporary British Fiction’ by social historian Joe Moran; with the Times Literary Supplement projecting that it ‘may emerge as one of the great, eccentric London novels’. Her second novel, Perfect Architect (2011, Alcemi), draws on Joso’s interest in architectural and psychological space. Accompanied by illustrations by Japanese artist, Hiroki Godengi, Perfect Architect was given full-page discussion in the international magazine: ICON.

Her latest novel, My Falling Down House, is the recipient of the Great Britain Sasakawa Foundation Award.


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Author Events

Wednesday 29th May, 14:30

Dylan Moore hosts this conversation about two extraordinary novels. In Jayne Joso’s latest novel From Seven to the Sea (Seren 2019) seven-year-old Esther must negotiate adult dysfunction, and a school environment that exposes her to further prejudice and injustice. The novel is a window onto the world of a child who rejects convention and expectation. Deborah Kay Davies’ Tirzah and the Prince of Crows is set in a remote valley in Wales in 1974. As sixteen year old Tirzah struggles against the confines of her community, juggling everyone’s expectations and trying to find her own way in the...