April 16 2014 Latest news:

Latest London news, sport & entertainment

Local Weather

Sunny

Sunny

max temp: 15°C

min temp: 9°C

Five-day forecast

Boris Johnson labels acclaimed Zadie Smith novel White Teeth ‘unreadable’ on West Hampstead visit

Boris Johnson purchasing Zadie Smith's latest novel NW at West End Lane Books. Boris Johnson purchasing Zadie Smith's latest novel NW at West End Lane Books.

Wednesday, December 4, 2013
5:40 PM

Apparently Boris Johnson isn’t keen on novelist Zadie Smith’s award-winning debut but that didn’t stop him buying her latest work during a trip to West Hampstead.

To send a link to this page to a friend, you must be logged in.

Zadie Smith reads from her new book NW during a visit to Swiss Cottage Library earlier this year. Picture: Nigel Sutton.Zadie Smith reads from her new book NW during a visit to Swiss Cottage Library earlier this year. Picture: Nigel Sutton.

Heathman was perusing the shelves in West End Lane Books last Thursday when the Mayor of London burst into the bookstore alongside Simon Marcus, Hampstead and Kilburn Conservatives’ parliamentary candidate in the 2015 general election.

It seems Mr Johnson was keen to pick up a new read as he strolled along West End Lane during an official visit to West Hampstead, organised by Mr Marcus.

Bewildered by the vastness of choice on offer, the mayor turned to staff for a recommendation and was handed a copy of local girl Zadie Smith’s latest offering NW, an ode to the north-west London of her childhood.

Conversation quickly moved to White Teeth - the book that made the former Hampstead School pupil’s name - with Mr Johnson describing it as “unreadable”.

But within seconds of delivering that unforgiving review, he was handing over cash for Ms Smith’s new work.

Mr Johnson, the author of several books of his own, is obviously willing to give Zadie another chance.

Share this article

0 comments

   Local advertisers

More news

Click here to read the Digital Edition of the Ham&High on screen
Use our Wedding site to help you plan your big day!
At WeddingSite we know how much you have to organise for your wedding day, that's why we have designed a set of FREE, simple-to-use tools to make the planning process easy & hassle-free. FIND OUT MORE
Find a date using our online dating and friend finder
You can meet new friends, find romance or simply meet up online with people sharing similar interests and hobbies. FIND OUT MORE
Find a local business using our online directory search
Need a plumber? Or a florist? Or anything else? Search our business directory to find Hampstead businesses in just a few seconds. FIND OUT MORE
Family notices from the Ham&High, with readers' tributes
In memoriam, birthdays, weddings, anniversaries, best wishes & special days. FIND OUT MORE