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The Long Song - Andrea Levy

The Long Song - Andrea Levy

Title: The Long Song

Author:  Andrea Levy

ISBN:  9780755359400

Weight:  779g

Dated signed first edition, first printing



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The Long Song by Andrea Levy

You do not know me yet.  My son Thomas, who is publishing this book, tells me, it is customary at this place in a novel to give the reader a little taste of the story that is held within these pages.  As your storyteller, I am to convey that this tale is set in Jamaica during the last turbulent years of slavery and the early years of freedom that followed.

July is a slave girl who lives upon a sugar plantation named Amity and it is her life that is the subject of this tale.  She was there when the Baptist War raged in 1831, and she was also present when slavery was declared no more.  My son says I must convey how the story tells also of July’s mama Kitty, of the Negroes that worked the plantation land, of Caroline Mortimer the white woman who owned the plantation and many more persons besides – far too many for me to list here.  But what befalls them all is carefully chronicled upon these pages for you to peruse.

Perhaps, my son suggests, I might write that it is a thrilling journey through that time in the company of people who lived it.  All this he wishes me to pen so the reader can decide if this is a book they might care to consider.  Cha, I tell my son, what fuss-fuss.  Come, let them just read it for themselves.

Peer & Press Reviews

As well as providing a history of post-abolition Jamaica, The Long Song is beautifully written, intricately plotted, humorous and earthy…  Those who enjoyed Small Island will love The Long Song, not just for the insights on the “wretched island”, but as a marvel of luminous storytelling.

Ian Thomson, Financial Times

A beautifully written and cleverly constructed novel that projects convincing personal relationships on to the feral backdrop of the Jamaican plantations.


An immensely readable and well-paced book.  Levy has grown as a writer: her use of language and imagery have become more accomplished than her earlier offerings.  She has a real gift for comedy, which is very much in evidence here.

Andrea Stuart, Independent

Bibliographic Info

TitleThe Long Song
Book Features
Edition / printingFirst edition, first printing
Overall conditionFine (see our article on Condition Grades)
SignedOn the title page
Awards and Media
Awards and prizes

Man Booker Prize 2010 – shortlist

Orange Prize for Fiction 2010 – longlist [now the WPfF]

Media adaptationBBC One produced a three-part TV adaptation of this historical drama. It was screened over three consecutive nights at 9:00 p.m. from Tuesday 18 December 2018.
Book Stats
PublisherHeadline Publishing Group
ImprintHeadline Review
Publication date
Printed byCPI Mackays, Chatham
ISBN 139780755359400
ISBN 100755359402
FormatHardcover [pictorial boards], no dust jacket
Size (h x w x d)241 x 163 x 29mm
Image and Design Credits
Jacket designWendy Birch
Illustr. & endpapersSally Taylor / Artist Partners

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