‘Reversible’ by Courttia Newland

There was a time before black British fiction, and that time was not that long ago. I am exaggerating for effect, but not by much. Courttia Newland was one of few shining early lights in that wilderness, with his wonderful novel from ’97, The Scholar. This story is like a scene from Top Boy yet all the more poignant for its temporal reversal.

First published in Sex & Death, Faber & Faber, edited by Sarah Hall and Peter Hobbs; collected in Best British Short Stories 2017, Salt Publishing

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