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Girl, woman, other by Bernardine Evaristo
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Girl, woman, other (edition 2019)

by Bernardine Evaristo

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingConversations / Mentions
2,2761105,827 (4.25)1 / 277
"Girl, Woman, Other is a celebration of the diversity of Black British experience. Moving, hopeful, and inventive, this extraordinary novel is a vivid portrait of the state of contemporary Britain and the legacy of Britain's colonial history in Africa and the Caribbean. The twelve central characters of this multi-voiced 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, works hard to earn a degree from Oxford and becomes an 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 93-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 and fast-moving form that borrows from poetry, Girl, Woman, Other is a polyphonic and richly textured social novel that reminds us of everything that connects us to our neighbors, even in times when we are encouraged to be split apart"--Provided by publisher.… (more)
Member:SamRaddatz
Title:Girl, woman, other
Authors:Bernardine Evaristo
Info:London : Penguin Books, 2019.
Collections:Your library
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Girl, Woman, Other by Bernardine Evaristo

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» See also 277 mentions

English (102)  Dutch (3)  German (2)  Danish (1)  All languages (108)
Showing 1-5 of 102 (next | show all)
Loved this!
Hard hitting, powerful, scary and beautiful. A much needed book, with a great ending to tie everything together. Will be reading more from Bernardine Evaristo. ( )
  Alin.Llewellyn | Nov 1, 2022 |
A series of twelve interrelated stories woven together into a quasi-novel. The primary characters are mostly black British women of differing age, class, and identity. As the story unfolds, we learn their backstories, and how these characters are interconnected. The stories include diverse topics such as family dynamics, gender, race, migration, heritage, appearance, love, loss, and misunderstandings.

Evaristo starts with a result, then explains how the character reached that situation. This is an effective approach, especially when there are twelve main characters, plus many more supporting characters. The structure of the book is unusual. The first words of sentences are not capitalized, and punctuation is limited. It almost reads as poetry. It flowed well once I got used to it, but I am generally not a fan of the current trend in bucking traditional writing conventions. Still, I found it socially relevant, creative, and thought-provoking. This book was a co-winner of the Booker Prize in 2019.
( )
  Castlelass | Oct 30, 2022 |
This was a 3.5 star read rounded up for me. It is a collection stories of mainly British women of color and I appreciated the different life experiences each new story would bring. The main reason for a 3.5 vs 4 star rating for me was maybe just my mood but the stories portrayed being a woman as very difficult and bleak at times and that feeling just stayed with me, even if more positive, uplifting moments were shown. But that is not to say there was not a lot of truth written about the plight of women and more so for WOC, particularly LGBT WOC. The stories also seem disconnected but there will be lines drawn at the end. One thing I noticed people commented on was not liking the formatting, as it missed punctuations and capitals and typical grammatical formatting but I listened to the audiobook so this didn't bother me. The narrator seemed to have no problems reading as if all this structure was still intact so I'm anxious to get a physical book and compare it to my experience. ( )
  JediBookLover | Oct 29, 2022 |
Less a story than a machine gun spray of quips, poses, opinions, snide remarks, celebrity name dropping, empty lives, political slogans and outsider activist porn. All very trendy and young, but where is the narrative? Is anything going to happen? Giving up soon and VERY glad I borrowed this from the library. ( )
  Bookmarque | Oct 20, 2022 |
Never has a book of short stories captivated me so much. Evaristo has given each woman a distinct voice that sucks you in, 12 distinct lives across generations, social class and backgrounds. Sometimes super slow, at times very fast-paced. Despite the prize-winning and hype, I was pleasantly surprised. ( )
  Joannerdrgs | Sep 22, 2022 |
Showing 1-5 of 102 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors (14 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Evaristo, Bernardineprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Bravery, RichardCover designersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Campbell, AliCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Nabirye, Anna-MariaNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Singh, KaranCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Vos, LetteTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Dedication
For the sisters & the sistas & the sistahs & the sistren & the women & the womxn & the wimmin & the womyn & our brethren & our bredrin & our brothers & our bruvs & our men & our mandem & the LGBTQI+ members of the human family.
First words
Amma

is walking along the promenade of the waterway that bisects her city, a few early morning barges cruise slowly by

to her left is the nautical-themed footbridge with its deck-like walkway and sailing mast pylons

to her right is the bend in the river as it heads east past Waterloo Bridge towards the dome of St Paul's

she feels the sun begin to rise, the air still breezy before the city clogs up with heat and fumes

a violinist plays something suitably uplifting further along the promenade

Amma's play, The Last Amazon of Dahomey, opens at the National tonight
Quotations
when they leave uni it's gonna be with a huge debt and crazy competitions for jobs and the outrageous rental prices out there mean that her generation will have to move back home forever, which will lead to even more of them despairing of the future and what with the plant about to go shit with the United Kingdom soon to be disunited from Europe which itself is hurtling down the reactionary road and making fascism fashionable again and it's so crazy that the disgusting perma-tanned biliionaire has set a new intellectual and moral low by being president of America and basically it all means that the older generation has ruined everything and her generation is dooooooomed
this metal-haired wild creature from the bush with the piercingly feral eyes
is her mother
this is she
this is her
who cares about her colour? why on earth did Penelope ever think it mattered
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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"Girl, Woman, Other is a celebration of the diversity of Black British experience. Moving, hopeful, and inventive, this extraordinary novel is a vivid portrait of the state of contemporary Britain and the legacy of Britain's colonial history in Africa and the Caribbean. The twelve central characters of this multi-voiced 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, works hard to earn a degree from Oxford and becomes an 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 93-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 and fast-moving form that borrows from poetry, Girl, Woman, Other is a polyphonic and richly textured social novel that reminds us of everything that connects us to our neighbors, even in times when we are encouraged to be split apart"--Provided by publisher.

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Book description
Teeming with energy, humour and heart, a love song to black Britain told by twelve very different people.

Winner of the Booker Prize 2019.

Grace is a Victorian orphan dreaming of the mysterious African father she will never meet.

Winsome is a young Windrush bride, recently arrived from Barbados.

Amma is the fierce queen of her 1980s squatters' palace.

Morgan, who used to be Megan, is blowing up on social media, the newest activist-influencer on the block.

Twelve very different people, mostly black and female, more than a hundred years of change, and one sweeping, vibrant, glorious portrait of contemporary Britain. Bernardine Evaristo presents a gloriously new kind of history for this old country: ever-dynamic, ever-expanding and utterly irresistible.
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