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Girl: Book summary and reviews of Girl by Edna O'Brien

Girl by Edna O'Brien X
Girl by Edna O'Brien
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  • Published in USA  Oct 2019
    240 pages
    Genre: Novels

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Book Summary

Girl, Edna O'Brien's hotly anticipated new novel, envisages the lives of the Boko Haram girls in a masterpiece of violence and tenderness.

I was a girl once, but not anymore.

So begins Girl, Edna O'Brien's harrowing portrayal of the young women abducted by Boko Haram. Set in the deep countryside of northeast Nigeria, this is a brutal story of incarceration, horror, and hunger; a hair-raising escape into the manifold terrors of the forest; and a descent into the labyrinthine bureaucracy and hostility awaiting a victim who returns home with a child blighted by enemy blood. From one of the century's greatest living authors, Girl is an unforgettable story of one victim's astonishing survival, and her unflinching faith in the redemption of the human heart.

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Reviews

Media Reviews

"In a feat of empathy and imagination, the Irish writer O'Brien portrays one girl's torments after she is taken by jihadis in Nigeria...A heartbreaking tale and a singular achievement." - Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

"O'Brien captures the intensity and urgency of Maryam's plight with measured, evocative prose that often reads like poetry. She succeeds in putting a personal face on an international tragedy." - Publishers Weekly

"A haunting tale of suffering and innocence defiled. Remarkable in its trajectory from darkness through to a hard-won glimmer of light. Fierce and lyrical by turns. Another magnificent book from a magnificent writer." - Marina Carr

"By an extraordinary act of the imagination we are transported into the inner world of a girl who, after brutal abuse as a slave to Nigerian jihadis, escapes and with dogged persistence begins to rebuild her shattered life. Girl is a courageous book about a courageous spirit." - J. M. Coetzee

"Girl is a novel of profound and ever-renewing empathy and grace―a parable on the complex subject of human redemption. Its verbal funds are clear and transporting and unforgettable; its dramatic resources vast." - Richard Ford

"Edna O'Brien tells this story with such compassion and understanding that the very disturbing events she relates are uplifting―and unforgettable. An utterly unique achievement." - Ian McKellen

The information about Girl shown above was first featured in "The BookBrowse Review" - BookBrowse's online-magazine that keeps our members abreast of notable and high-profile books publishing in the coming weeks. In most cases, the reviews are necessarily limited to those that were available to us ahead of publication. If you are the publisher or author of this book and feel that the reviews shown do not properly reflect the range of media opinion now available, please send us a message with the mainstream media reviews that you would like to see added.

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Author Information

Edna O'Brien Author Biography

Photo: Orion Books

Edna O'Brien is an Irish novelist, memoirist, playwright, poet and short story writer. She is considered the "doyenne" of Irish literature. She was the winner of the 1993 Writer's Guild Prize for Fiction. Her biography of James Joyce was published by Weidenfeld & Nicolson in June 1999. In 2001 her documentary novel, In the Forest - about a brutal murder on the west coast - caused a furor in her native Ireland. It was the subject of a BBC Omnibus film and was later shortlisted for Irish Book of the Decade.

O'Brien now lives in London. She received the Irish PEN Award in 2001. Saints and Sinners won the 2011 Frank O'Connor International Short Story Award, the world's richest prize for a short story collection. In 2018 she received the PEN/Nabokov Award. Faber and Faber published her memoir, ...

... Full Biography

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