Manifesto: Book summary and reviews of Manifesto by Bernardine Evaristo

Manifesto

On Never Giving Up

by Bernardine Evaristo

Manifesto by Bernardine Evaristo X
Manifesto by Bernardine Evaristo
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  • Publishes in USA 
    Jan 18, 2022
    224 pages
    Genre: Biography/Memoir

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Book Summary

From the bestselling and Booker Prize–winning author of Girl, Woman, Other, Bernardine Evaristo's memoir of her own life and writing, and her manifesto on unstoppability, creativity, and activism.

Bernardine Evaristo's 2019 Booker Prize win was a historic and revolutionary occasion, with Evaristo being the first Black woman and first Black British person ever to win the prize in its fifty-year history. Girl, Woman, Other was named a favorite book of the year by President Obama and Roxane Gay, was translated into thirty-five languages, and has now reached more than a million readers.

Evaristo's astonishing nonfiction debut, Manifesto, is a vibrant and inspirational account of Evaristo's life and career as she rebelled against the mainstream and fought over several decades to bring her creative work into the world. With her characteristic humor, Evaristo describes her childhood as one of eight siblings, with a Nigerian father and white Catholic mother, tells the story of how she helped set up Britain's first Black women's theatre company, remembers the queer relationships of her twenties, and recounts her determination to write books that were absent in the literary world around her. She provides a hugely powerful perspective to contemporary conversations around race, class, feminism, sexuality, and aging. She reminds us of how far we have come, and how far we still have to go. In Manifesto, Evaristo charts her theory of unstoppability, showing creative people how they too can visualize and find success in their work, ignoring the naysayers.

Both unconventional memoir and inspirational text, Manifesto is a unique reminder to us all to persist in doing work we believe in, even when we might feel overlooked or discounted. Evaristo shows us how we too can follow in her footsteps, from first vision, to insistent perseverance, to eventual triumph.

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Reviews

Media Reviews

"Evaristo inspires while keeping it real, deftly avoiding the sentimentality and vagueness that too often plague advice books...[she] imparts her hard-won wisdom unapologetically and with refreshing nuance. A beautiful ode to determination and daring and an intimate look at one of our finest writers." - Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

"In lithe prose, [Evaristo] tackles her complicated relationship with sexuality, reminisces on hustling her early books into readers' hands and finding 'a room of my own' in her writing later in life, and dispenses advice on cultivating creativity and intergenerational consciousness...[R]eaders will find much to ruminate over in this meditation on the power of art and persistence." - Publishers Weekly

"The most striking feature of this moving and enjoyable book is [Evaristo's] fearless openness. When the publishing world looked closed to her she prised it open with her daring fiction." - Sunday Times (UK)

"A rallying cry...Manifesto combines the personal with the practical to powerful effect ... Unconventional as it may be, the format works: the autobiographical parts of the book serve as vivid lessons about the power of change, growth and self-confidence...Entertaining as well as instructive." - The Guardian (UK)

"Lively and important...[Evaristo] is unfailingly generous in delineating how she became herself ... She is determined not to pull up the ladder behind her and is also, often wickedly funny...How I wish when I was 18 that someone—if not necessarily my school—had thrust Manifesto into my hands." - Evening Standard (UK)

This information about Manifesto shown above was first featured in "The BookBrowse Review" - BookBrowse's membership magazine, and in our weekly "Publishing This Week" newsletter. 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 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.

Any "Author Information" displayed below reflects the author's biography at the time this particular book was published.

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Author Information

Bernardine Evaristo Author Biography

Photo: Jennie Scott

Bernardine Evaristo is the 2019 winner of the Booker Prize for Girl, Woman, Other, which was a national bestseller and a winner and finalist for many awards including the Women's Prize for Fiction and the Dublin Literary Award. Evaristo is the author of seven other books that explore aspects of the African diaspora. Her writing spans verse fiction, short fiction, poetry, essays, literary criticism, and drama. Evaristo is President of the Royal Society of Literature, Professor of Creative Writing at Brunel University London, and an Honorary Fellow of St Anne's College, Oxford. She received an OBE in 2020, and lives in London with her husband. Her most recent book is Manifesto: On Never Giving Up.

Link to Bernardine Evaristo's Website

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  • Girl, Woman, Other jacket
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