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Francesca Simon



In this programme, Michael Rosen interviews the author Malorie Blackman and the creator of Horrid Henry, Francesca Simon.

Malorie tells Michael how a game of noughts and crosses inspired her award-winning book, which seriously challenges conventional views of race and prejudice. The book, Noughts and Crosses, is now turning some teenagers into avid readers.

Michael also discovers what it was like living through a revolution as Sir David Winkley shares his memoirs of being a headteacher at a school in Handsworth, Birmingham when the streets were overtaken by violent rioting 20 years ago.

The Reading Aloud panel read Sir David's book, Handsworth Revolution. Winsome Thomas, Victoria Shaw, and John Richmond explore the many issues raised by the book that has become something of a template for those seeking to turn around a failing school.


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