The place where we started from isn’t always the place that we call home.
Growing up in Athens, to a soundtrack of British rock and pop songs, Helen had always dreamed of living in London. Now that she’s finally there, armed with the knowledge and certificates that deem her prepared, she’s ready to find her place in the city that she loves and embrace everything it has to offer, free of preconceptions that would hold her back. Or so she thinks, until she finds herself trapped inside a song – her Designation: Common People.
Set in the late 90s, in a reality only ever so slightly removed from our own, Common People is a novel about identity and belonging, and about how the place where we started from isn’t always the place that we call home. It’s about prejudice and preconceptions and stereotypes and how they shape us and our understanding of the world; it’s about racism and xenophobia, the fear of the other that both unites and divides us, the extremes we go to, sometimes, to protect our identities even as we ostensibly strive for diversity and integration. It’s about British society, and every society that’s ever been challenged by immigration. None of this is new; none of this is old. These are themes running through our history, always: often quietly as undercurrents, until something causes them to burst forth, explode into our lives, forcing us to renegotiate them once again.