The Boy With No Shoes

The Boy With No Shoes is William Horwood's fictionalised autobiography, based around his childhood in a fishing town in East Kent, England. It was published by Hodder Headline in August 2004 as a hardcover and paperback, then in April 2005 as a paperback with a different photo cover.

Editions of The Boy With No Shoes

first published
and cover price
(August 2)


(August 2)
(April 21)
2005Magna Large Print

The Boy With No Shoes is listed as a memoir under Books by William Horwood in Dark Hearts of Chicago, a collaboration with Helen Rappaport which was published in 2007. My review copy of Dark Hearts of Chicago mentions "the autobiographical The Boy With No Shoes which the Sunday Times described as 'beautifully written'. It sold over 90,000 copies in paperback."

Q Frequently asked questions about The Boy With No Shoes on William Horwood's official website at

B Bookseller listings:

B Reviews:


Boy The Boy With No Shoes has been published in German, in March 2006, as Der Junge, der keine Schuhe hatte. The translator is Henning Ahrens.

A Korean translation by Han Chin-yŏng was published in 2006 by Nano midiŏ. (WorldCat record.)

B Past events:

During the Sunday Times Oxford Literary Festival in April 2005, William Horwood spoke on Memoir-Writing as a Dangerous Activity.

The Boy with No Shoes was shortlisted for the Mind Book of the Year 2005, (there was an April 29, 2005 shortlist announcement) and William Horwood took part in the preview readings in May. The winner was The Cruel Mother by Siân Busby.

The Boy with No Shoes got a mention in the Guardian's Books of the year 2004: By popular demand.

An extract from The Boy With No Shoes was published in in The Times in July 2004. (which requires a paid subscription to view the full articles) reported on January 14 2004:
"Horwood memoir to Headline Headline has paid six figures after a hotly contested auction for UK rights".

In March 2004, there was another relevant piece on

Golmann buys Horwood memoir
At the London Book Fair, Goldmann in Germany made a "pre-emptive strong five figure sterling bid" for William Horwood's memoir The Boy with No Shoes, already bought by Valerie Hudson at Headline.

Part of Website created and maintained by Katherine Delany. Updated September 15, 2013.