Literary Road Map of Islington

Celebrate our borough's long, rich heritage of authors, screenwriters, poets and writers who live or work here

Literary Road Map of Islington celebrates our borough’s long, rich heritage of authors, screenwriters, poets and writers who have lived here, and the literary works which have been inspired by or set here.

Search the list below to see the novels, plays and poems which were written about Islington and the authors, such as Andrea Levy (1956-2019), who were born or lived in the borough, or Charles Dickens (1812-1870, who used various locations around Islington in their novels.

Also, look at our interactive map to see the literary connections to your area of Islington. To do this click on ‘Show Layers’, ‘Recreation & Leisure’ and check the ‘Literary Road Map’ box.


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  • Fiction

Gordon, Kat

The Artificial Anatomy of Parks (2015). Fiction. Kat was born in Islington and attended the borough’s Thornhill Primary School and Camden School for Girls, just across the border. The Artificial Anatomy of Parks made the shortlist for ‘Not the Booker Prize’ 2015, which is run by the Guardian in the UK and voted on by the public.

Aaronovitch, Ben


Whispers Under Ground (2012). The third Rivers of London novel is set in Tufnell Park. [CT]

Ackerman, Len

In Their Footsteps (2014), And Now They Are Ghosts (2015) and No Place for Angels (2018). He was born in and grew up in Packington Street and has written three books, all set in Islington.

Ackroyd, Peter


Clerkenwell Tales (2003) and other titles. His stories are set in and around Clerkenwell and in The House of Dr Dee (1993), Dr Dee lives at the site of what is the Clerks’ Well (14-16 Farringdon Lane).

Adams, Richard


Watership Down (1974) and other titles. Adams lived and wrote at 26 St Paul’s Place from 1952-1974.

Allison, Alex

The Art of the Body (2019) The author was born in Islington.

Arnott, Jake


The Fatal Tree (2017). Arnott’s work of historical fiction looks at the life and crimes of Jack Sheppard from the point of view of his wife Edgeware Bess, as they move around Clerkenwell and other parts of London.

Baird, Nicola

Coconut Wireless (2010) and other titles. The journalist and author of the Islington Faces blog lives in north Islington.

Brellend, Kay

The Street (2011) and other titles. Books set in Campbell Road known locally as Campbell Bunk (now Whadcoat Street).

Bennett, Arnold


Riceyman Steps (1923). The story is about Henry Earlforward who owns a second-hand bookshop in Riceyman Steps, which were based on Gwynne Place, leading up from King’s Cross Road to Granville Square (Riceyman Square in the book).

Banks, Iain


Wasp Factory (1984), Walking on Glass (1985) and other titles. Banks lived at 27 Islington Park Street and wrote Wasp Factory while living there.

Baron, Alexander


Rosie Hogarth (1951). Baron wrote about the changes to a tightknit, working class community in a street close to Chapel Market at the end of WWII.