Talks and Events

Stoke Newington Literary Festival 2019

From the city, from the plough book cover

Public book launch: So We Live: the novels of Alexander Baron

Date /Time: Sunday, 9 June 2019, 2pm

Five Leaves will be launching their new book about the acclaimed Hackney-born writer at the festival. Join novelist Anthony Cartwright, historians Sean Longden & Nadia Valman, journalist Andrew Whitehead, literary critic Susie Thomas, and writer Ken Worpole in commemorating one of the most admired novelists and screen-writers of post-war Britain.

Alexander Baron (1917 - 1999) joined the Communist Party as a young man, saw the thick of battle in Sicily and Normandy, and his first novel, From the City, From the Plough (1948), was acclaimed as the definitive novel of the Second World War, the first of a trilogy including There’s No Home (1950) and The Human Kind (1953). There followed by a string of novels about working class life in post-war Hackney, including the cult novel The Lowlife (1963), set in 1960s Stoke Newington. The book’s contributors discuss this remarkable writer, his political and literary milieu.

Information & booking: £5, Tickets and further information
Venue: The Old Church, Stoke Newington Church St N16 9ES
Information about the whole Festival programme:

Literary London Annual Conference

So We Live: the novels of Alexander BaronThere's no home bookcover

Date /Time: 12 July 2019, 4pm

The theme of this year’s conference is ‘Neighbours of Ours: Cities, Communities, Networks’, and novelist Anthony Cartwright, military historian Sean Longden, literary critic Susie Thomas and writer Ken Worpole will be discussing their new book about novelist Alexander Baron, now regarded as perhaps the greatest writer to emerge from the battlegrounds of the Second World War, as well as a devoted chronicler of working class life in east London during the optimistic years of post-war reconstruction.

Information & booking:
Venue:University of Notre Dame (U.S.A.) in England, 1-4 Suffolk Street, London, SW1Y 4HG

So We Live: the novels of Alexander Baron

So We Live book coverDate /Time: Thursday, 13 June 2019, 7pm - 9pm

Join Susie Thomas, Nadia Valman and Ken Worpole, all contributors to a new book of essays celebrating the life and work of Hackney-born novelist Alexander Baron. Baron was often described as the finest novelist of World War Two, and the author of many post-war novels set in east London, including the cult novel ‘The Lowlife’. Many of Baron’s novels are back in print as his work enjoys a renewed reputation. Thomas, Valman and Worpole explain why, and talk about this fascinating writer and his love and respect for the people of Hackney and the East End at war and in peace-time.

Information & booking: For booking and other details:
Venue: Pages Bookshop, 70 Lower Clapton Road, London E5 0RN

Essex Book Festival 2019


‘Brightening from the East: Radical Communities on the River Stour'

Date /Time: Sunday, 24 March 2019, 11am

The first of three talks programmed in partnership with the River Stour Festival. Writer and social historian Ken Worpole focuses on ‘back to the land’ and utopian experiments in North-East Essex, including The Adelphi Centre, Frating Hall Farm, the Othona Community and at Ardleigh. Part of Radical ESSEX an anthology accompanying a project re-examining the county in relation to radicalism in thought, lifestyle, politics and architecture.

Information & booking: Tickets £7/£5 
For more information & booking:
Firstsite, Lewis Gardens, Colchester CO1 IJH