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Girl - Edna O'Brien

Girl - Edna O'Brien

Title: Girl

Author:  Edna O'Brien

ISBN:  9780571341160

Weight:  677g

Signed first edition, first printing



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Our price:  £27.50

Girl by Edna O’Brien

The new novel by the legendary Edna O’Brien, author of The Country Girls.

Captured, abducted and married into Boko Haram, the narrator of this story witnesses and suffers the horrors of a community of men governed by a brutal code of violence.

Barely more than a girl herself, she must soon learn how to survive as a woman with a child of her own.  Just as the world around her seems entirely consumed by madness, bound for hell, she is offered an escape of sorts – but only into another landscape of trials and terrors amidst the unforgiving wilds of northeastern Nigeria, through the forest and beyond; a place where her traumas are met with the blinkered judgement of a society in denial.

How do we love in a world that has lost its moorings?  How can we comprehend the barbarism of our enemies, and learn forgiveness for atrocities committed in the name of ideology?  Edna O’Brien's new novel pierces to the heart of these questions: and the result is her masterpiece.

Peer & Press Reviews

In Girl, the freshness of her prose is met by the innocence of her narrator and the freedom of her language by the chaos of the events it describes.  The life she imagines and presents to the reader is one of unimaginable horror and she does not shy away .  O’Brien puts all her might into seeing through her character’s young eyes, and this involves forgetting much that she herself knows.  The triumph of the book is in the voice of the narrator, who is just as articulate as she might be.  The book has a huge storyteller’s energy and O’Brien does not patronise – she really has entered the heart of this girl [and] has arrived at some essence of what it is to be vulnerable, female and young.

Anne Enright, Irish Times

Girl broke me in two.  It is a work of towering humanity and enduring literary value; a hard and beautiful miracle.

Eimear McBride

[O’Brien’s] writing remains as vivid, imaginative and gorgeous as it was in her brilliant youth… [and displays] the wisdom of maturity.  She is not only prepared to tackle big, difficult and controversial subjects from which less bold novelists would shrink, but she addresses them with a wonderful assurance.  She is a writer from whom anyone would wish to learn, and one indeed who reminds us that imaginative fiction can illuminate the world and the way we live, feel and think as not even the best non-fiction can.  DH Lawrence called the novel “the great book of life;” it is that book which O’Brien opens for us.  Read Girl and marvel at its rich humanity.

Allan Massie, The Scotsman

Bibliographic Info

Attribute Details
Title Girl
Book Features
Edition / printing First edition, first printing
Overall condition Fine / Fine (see our article on Condition Grades)
Signed On the title page
Awards and Media
Awards and prizes

Orwell Prize for Political Fiction 2020 – longlist

Women’s Prize for Fiction 2020 – longlist

An Post Irish Book Awards 2019 – shortlist (novel)

An Post Irish Book Awards 2019 – shortlist (RTÉ listeners)

Book Stats
Publisher Faber & Faber
Publication date
Printed by CPI Group (UK) Ltd, Croydon
ISBN 13 9780571341160
ISBN 10 0571341160
Format Hardcover with dust jacket
Pages 225
Size (h x w x d) 224 x 143 x 25mm
Image and Design Credits
Author photograph Murdo Macleod
Jacket design Faber

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