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Girl, Woman, Other
Cover of Girl, Woman, Other
Girl, Woman, Other
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From one of Britain's most celebrated writers of color comes a magnificent portrayal of the intersections of identity and a moving and hopeful story of an interconnected group of Black British women.

Girl, Woman, Other paints a vivid portrait of the state of post-Brexit Britain, as well as looking back to the legacy of Britain's colonial history in Africa and the Caribbean.

The twelve central characters of this multivoiced novel lead vastly different lives: Amma is a newly acclaimed playwright whose work often explores her Black lesbian identity; her old friend Shirley is a teacher, jaded after decades of work in London's funding-deprived schools; Carole, one of Shirley's former students, is a successful investment banker; Carole's mother Bummi works as a cleaner and worries about her daughter's lack of rootedness despite her obvious achievements. From a nonbinary social media influencer to a ninety-three-year-old woman living on a farm in Northern England, these unforgettable characters also intersect in shared aspects of their identities, from age to race to sexuality to class.

Sparklingly witty and filled with emotion, centering voices we often see othered, and written in an innovative fast-moving form that borrows technique from poetry, Girl, Woman, Other is a polyphonic and richly textured social novel that shows a side of Britain we rarely see, one that reminds us of all that connects us to our neighbors, even in times when we are encouraged to be split apart.

From one of Britain's most celebrated writers of color comes a magnificent portrayal of the intersections of identity and a moving and hopeful story of an interconnected group of Black British women.

Girl, Woman, Other paints a vivid portrait of the state of post-Brexit Britain, as well as looking back to the legacy of Britain's colonial history in Africa and the Caribbean.

The twelve central characters of this multivoiced novel lead vastly different lives: Amma is a newly acclaimed playwright whose work often explores her Black lesbian identity; her old friend Shirley is a teacher, jaded after decades of work in London's funding-deprived schools; Carole, one of Shirley's former students, is a successful investment banker; Carole's mother Bummi works as a cleaner and worries about her daughter's lack of rootedness despite her obvious achievements. From a nonbinary social media influencer to a ninety-three-year-old woman living on a farm in Northern England, these unforgettable characters also intersect in shared aspects of their identities, from age to race to sexuality to class.

Sparklingly witty and filled with emotion, centering voices we often see othered, and written in an innovative fast-moving form that borrows technique from poetry, Girl, Woman, Other is a polyphonic and richly textured social novel that shows a side of Britain we rarely see, one that reminds us of all that connects us to our neighbors, even in times when we are encouraged to be split apart.

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About the Author-
  • Bernardine Evaristo is the Anglo-Nigerian award-winning author of several books of fiction and verse fiction, including the novel Girl, Woman, Other, which won the 2019 Booker Prize. She is the first black woman to ever have received the Booker Prize. She is professor of creative writing at Brunel University London and vice chair of the Royal Society of Literature. Her writing is characterized by experimentation, daring, and subversion, challenging the myths of various Afro-diasporic histories and identities, and her books range in genre from poetry to short story to drama to criticism. Her books have been chosen as a book of the year thirteen times by British media, and her novel The Emperor's Babe was a London Times Book of the Decade.

Reviews-
  • AudioFile Magazine Narrator Anna-Maria Nabirye's warm, rhythmic voice embraces listeners from the first rush of words in this Booker Award-winning kaleidoscope of a novel about a group of interconnected black women in England from the 1980s to today. A playwright for whom being black and lesbian is important; her straight daughter, who doesn't see what the fuss is; a friend who's jaded after years of teaching in London schools; one of her students who survived gang rape to become a hotshot banker; the banker's mother who works as a cleaner. And so many more. All fascinating from the moment Nabirye grabs a proverbial hand and pulls you onto the merry-go-round of personalities and stories. Funny, sad, gripping, thought-provoking stories told with pacing and characterizations you'll long remember. A.C.S. Winner of AudioFile Earphones Award � AudioFile 2019, Portland, Maine
  • Publisher's Weekly

    Starred review from October 28, 2019
    Evaristo (Mr. Loverman) beguiles with her exceptional depictions of a range of experiences of black British women in this Man Booker–shortlisted novel. Each interconnected chapter focuses on one of 12 women across decades within a few degrees of connection to middle-aged lesbian Amma. In the present, Amma remembers her years of precarious living and feminist agitation through theater while preparing for the opening night of her of her play about African Amazonian warriors at the National Theatre. Amma’s firebrand daughter, Yazz, hopes for a boyfriend at university but instead forms a diverse friend group that challenges her ideas about race and privilege. Amma’s best friend, Dominique, moves to America with an increasingly controlling girlfriend. Amma’s oldest friend, Shirley, is a discouraged schoolteacher, still hurt that her former student Carole did not appreciate her help launching her toward her lucrative, if frustrating, bank career. Shirley’s prickly colleague Penelope, a twice-divorced middle-class woman, hires Carole’s mother, Bummi, a Nigerian immigrant, as a cleaner. Morgan, a non-binary social media personality, enjoys laboring on the family’s north England farm, while their nonagenarian great-grandmother, Hattie, internally grumbles about her descendants’ indifference and the shock of family secrets. Hattie’s deceased mother, Grace, proudly Abyssinian, struggles with the death of her young children in a chapter set in the 1920s. The after-party following Amma’s play sparks awkward and revealing encounters between many of the women. Evaristo’s fresh, clipped style adds urgency riddled with sparks of humor. This is a stunning powerhouse of vibrant characters and heartbreaks. Agent: Emma Paterson; Aitken Alexander

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Bernardine Evaristo
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