To celebrate our birthday we’re offering 10% off all books throughout July!Discount will be applied automatically at checkout.
This Book Event has already taken place

Dean Atta – Person Unlimited

An Ode to My Black Queer Body

WithDean Atta
In conversation withJeda Pearl

At: The Portobello Bookshop

On:12th July 2024, 7:00pm - 8:00pm

Dean Atta – Person Unlimited at The Portobello Bookshop

We're so happy that Dean Atta will return to Portobello in July for an event to celebrate the publication of his memoir, Person Unlimited: An Ode to My Black Queer Body. It's an intimate meditation on bodies, age and self-acceptance. Atta's last visit to the bookshop for an event was back in May of 2022 when we celebrated his young adult novel, Only on the Weekends. Atta will be in conversation with fellow writer Jeda Pearl.

This event will take place in the bookshop with an in-person audience.

In-person vouchers can be redeemed on the night of the event against a single copy of Person Unlimited – we will have a list of attendees with vouchers to be redeemed. Please note that only one voucher can be redeemed per book.

About Person Unlimited: An Ode to My Black Queer Body:

A bold and vulnerable account of Dean’s relationship with his race, his sexuality and himself, Person Unlimited asks us to confront how willing we are to see – and accept – ourselves in full: the good, the bad and the ugly; our past and our present.

From choirboy to drag act, grandson to mentor, poet to lover, Dean Atta has played many roles in his life. In this formally inventive, candid and courageous book, he explores what he has carried in his body: wins and losses, shame and pride, pain and joy. Dean also investigates how radical self-acceptance and a willingness to abide with discomfort open up the possibility of a life lived beyond definition: a person unlimited.

Please note: Tickets for our events are non-refundable. Professional photography and videography may take place during this event. Thank you for your understanding.


Dean Atta Author

Dean Atta is an award-winning author and performance poet. He won the 2012 London Poetry Award and was named as one of the most influential LGBT people by the Independent on Sunday Pink List. He has written two YA novels-in-verse including The Black Flamingo which was a top-selling debut of 2020, and was shortlisted for the Waterstones Children's Book Prize, CHIP Carnegie Medal, the Jhalak Prize and the YA Book Prize. The Black Flamingo was also awarded the prestigious Stonewall Book Award and the Carnegie Shadowers' Choice Award 2020. Person Unlimited is his non-fiction debut. @DeanAtta

Jeda Pearl Chair

Jeda Pearl is a Scottish Jamaican writer based in Edinburgh, Scotland. In 2022, she was shortlisted for the Sky Arts RSL Award and longlisted for the Women Poets’ Prize. Art installations include Windrush Legacy Creative Reflections (2023), Caledonian Biotech Library, 3033 (Scottish Storytelling Centre, 2022) and Acts of Observation (Collective, 2021). Performances include StAnza, Hidden Door, Push the Boat Out, Cymera, Loud Poets and Edinburgh International Book Festival. Her poems and short stories are published by New Writing Scotland, Open Book, Not Going Back to Normal, Shoreline of Infinity, Aesthetica, Tapsalteerie, Luna Press and Stewed Rhubarb. Her debut poetry collection, Time Cleaves Itself, is published by Peepal Tree Press. @JedaPearl

The venue

The Portobello Bookshop

46 Portobello High Street
EH15 1DA

Telephone: 0131 629 6756


Wheelchair Access

We have a ramp at the front of the shop which has a ratio of 1:10 and loading capacity of 300kg, and so should be able to be used by most wheelchair users or those with mobility vehicles. The front doors are fully automated. Our shop interior is designed to allow access throughout for wheelchair users and prams, though please note there is only 700mm wide clearance to access the staff toilet.


We use a PA system to enhance the audio at our live events. We also have a hearing loop system installed, if you’d like to use our loop system during an event please let us know and we’ll make sure we have it set up and connected to the live audio feed during the event. If you wish to attend an event and require BSL interpretation, please give us a few weeks notice and we’ll do our best to arrange an interpreter.