Falling Off My Island: Yvonne Bailey-Smith in conversation

Day I Fell Off My Island

Celebrate Windrush Day with this free lunchtime event.

This event takes place in the British Library. It is a drop in-event, and tickets are not required. Please arrive before 13:00 to help ensure seating.

This year’s Windrush Day marks the 75th anniversary of the arrival of the ship Empire Windrush at Tilbury Docks, carrying some of the first Caribbean migrants to the UK.

Author Yvonne Bailey-Smith joins us for conversation and readings from her debut novel The Day I Fell Off My Island.  A compelling coming-of-age story, it tells the account of how a young girl’s life in 1960s Jamaica was upended with a sudden move to London.

Yvonne Bailey-Smith was born in Jamaica and emigrated to the UK in 1969 when she was a teenager. She trained as a social worker before becoming a psychotherapist. She is the mother of three children: novelist Zadie Smith; actor, musician and children’s book author Ben Bailey Smith and lyricist and writer LucSkyz.

Praise for The Day I Fell Off My Island: 

‘An evocative picture of a childhood in Jamaica, full of detail and atmosphere, enriched by the use of Jamaican patois... This immersive coming-of-age novel has themes of family, abuse, racism, mental illness and loss threaded through its pages’ – Daily Mail

‘It’s a compelling coming-of-age tale, written with wisdom, emotion and sincerity’ – Culture Fly

‘An absorbing insight into the sense of loss that immigration can invoke’ New European

‘With an ear for the ribald patois of her grandmother tongue, Yvonne Bailey-Smith brings to bear on her debut book insights from a long career as a family therapist, juggling laughter and tears with every page we turn’ – Margaret Busby

Image of Yvonne Bailey-Smith by Suki Dhanda 

Please arrive no later than 15 minutes before the start time of this event. 

This event will not be live-streamed.

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Name: Falling Off My Island: Yvonne Bailey-Smith in conversation
Where: Entrance Hall
The British Library
96 Euston Road
Show Map      How to get to the Library
When: -
Price: Drop-in, no need to book
Enquiries: +44 (0)1937 546546