James Scudamore (author)

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James Scudamore
Born (1976-05-19) 19 May 1976 (age 40)
Education Christ Church, Oxford
University of East Anglia
Known for Award winning author
Spouse(s) Rose Grimond
(married 2007)
Children two sons (b. 2010 and 2013)

James Scudamore (born 19 May 1976) is an author.


Scudamore's first novel The Amnesia Clinic won the 2007 Somerset Maugham Award and was shortlisted for the Costa First Novel Award, the Commonwealth Writers' Prize, the Glen Dimplex Award and the Dylan Thomas Prize.[1] It was described by Hilary Mantel as "A wonderful debut - witty, polished, fluent and effortlessly entertaining" and by the judges of the Costa Award as a "delightful book ... full of tall tales and fantasy".[2]

His second novel, Heliopolis, was published in 2009.[3] Writing in The Guardian, Henry Shukman commented that "In his second novel, set in contemporary São Paulo, Scudamore does not embed a transplant from his own culture in foreign soil. Instead he takes the plunge and boldly invests himself in a first-person narrator. The novel is cleverly pitched to explore the two socioeconomic poles of modern urban Brazil. And the writing is exemplary: you feel the hand of a natural at work, one whose command of tone is strong, and who has an instinctive feel for handling a story."[4] The novel was longlisted for the 2009 Man Booker Prize.[5]

Following the publication in 2013 of his third novel, Wreaking,[6] the BBC Today programme interviewed Scudamore inside the grounds of the derelict Severalls Hospital in Colchester, where he explained how visits to such sites, rendered defunct by the Care in the Community Act, had directly inspired the book.[7]


Scudamore grew up in Japan, Brazil and the UK, and is a graduate of Christ Church, Oxford and of the University of East Anglia.[8] He is married to Rose Grimond, the granddaughter of the Liberal politician Jo Grimond.[9] He has held two fellowships at the University of East Anglia,[10] and he teaches at the City University of Hong Kong[11] and on the Guardian / UEA Masterclass course.[12]

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