Children's novelist and television, film and radio writer

Catherine Johnson has written several books for children and young adults, including A Nest of Vipers (Corgi, 2008), the story of Cato Hopkins, the youngest member of a group of expert fraudsters. Her next book, Sawbones, was published in October 2013 and won the Young Quills Award for Historical Fiction. The Curious Tale of the Lady Caraboo, published by Penguin Random House in 2015 was nominated for the CILIP Carnegie Medal 2016 and the YA Book Prize. Her most recent books are Freedom, nominated for the CILIP Carnegie Medal in 2019, and Race To The Frozen North. She is also included in Margaret Busby's anthology of Black Women's writing, New Daughters of Africa.

Catherine also writes for film, television and radio. In 2005 she co-wrote the highly acclaimed feature film Bullet Boy, followed by a number of commissions for Century Films, Working Title and Channel 4. Her TV work includes Rough Crossings for Simon Schama and Holby City.

She is currently working on an adaptation of Miranda Kaufmann's Black Tudors for Silverprint Pictures.





Bullet Boy
Producer Mark Boothe & Ruth Caleb
Director Saul Dibb
  • Ashley Walters
  • Luke Fraser
  • Clare Perkins
  • Leon Black
  • Feature film about a family in the East London
    Image Entertainment
    BBC Films & Shine Productions
    Ffilm Cymru
    In development

    Drama about the introduction of hair relaxant to black women in London

    Greenacre Films
    In development



    Fresh Berries
    Shortlisted: Imison Award 2013
    1 x 50'
    Director Marion Nancarrow
  • Madeline Duggan
  • Carl Prekopp
  • Lizzy Watts
  • Tilly Vosburgh
  • Eleanor Crooks
  • Drama exploring sexual exploitation of teenage girls broadcast as part of The Wire

    Broadcaster BBC Radio 3
    1 x 30'
    Producer Tanya Nash
  • Mirain Haf Roberts
  • Family drama 

    Broadcaster BBC Radio 4


    Writer & Creator 

    1 x 60'

    Original drama about an American ex slave living in London in the 17th century

    Left Bank Pictures
    In development


    Silverprint Pictures for ITV
    In development
    1 x 60'

    Commission co-written with Avril Russell

    Greenacre Films for BBC
    In development
    1 x 60'
    Producer Vicky Wharton

    Medical drama set in an A&E department

    BBC for BBC1
    Holby City
    2 x 60'
    Producer Ailsa Macaulay
    Director James Larkin

    Long-running hospital drama

    BBC for BBC1
    Producer Stephen Condie
    Director Stephen Condie
  • Simon Schama
  • Kim Thomas
  • Drama documentary charting the journey of American slaves fighting for Britain in the American War of Independence

    Drama exploring sexual exploitation of teenage girls in Britain

    Betty TV for Channel 4
    In development

    "Full of warmth and humour and endearing characters . . . this is a book with genuine heart."

    Tall Tales and Short Stories on Brave New Girl