Book #57 of 2020 | Girl, Woman, Other by Bernardine Evaristo

Title: Girl, Woman, Other

Author: Bernardine Evaristo

Thoughts: I loved this book. The style took a few pages to get used to, but once you do, the lack of periods or capitalization really serve to make the prose flow so well—it’s a book you get lost in; it will profoundly move you. The book follows 12 Black women in Britain, and each of their stories intersects with the others in really wonderful ways. While it’s individually an account of twelve separate women, together their narratives weave a rich tale of Black British womanhood, Black womanhood, and womanhood. Each character becomes intimately familiar, and you’ll love every one of them.

Favorite Lines:
“We want to read about lives beyond our own, but we also want to read stories that reflect our own lives. Literature depends our understanding of society and human behavior and when we are absent from it, when we are deprived of seeing ourselves in the culture around us, there is a sense of invalidation, a sense that we cannot be at the centre of human experience. Yet we are—everyone is.” (Author’s Note)

“she surprised herself at the strength of her grief” (p. 35)

“or maybe it’s to hide your fear, Yazz suggested, you’re actually feeling fear-ful, the words are separated by a few letters, fear-ful or fear-less, similar but diametrically different, see?” (p. 57)

“what if you drop the tough girl act and just be? what if you discover who you truly are deep down?” (p. 94)

“grateful to go back to the self she had lost” (p. 107)

“not me, not me, not me, she told herself, I shall fly above and beyond” (p. 128)

“over the next few months she felt herself shedding layers of what had been imposed, hoping to reach the core of herself” (p. 317)

“she’s lived in this place ninety-three years now, this farm isn’t just her home, her hyem, it’s her bones / and her soul” (p. 367)

“no matter how long since they’ve last seen each other, the distance of three thousand miles across America, plus another four thousand across an ocean, dissolves as it if was never a barrier in the first place / they pick up as comfortably as the time before, this is the real meaning of a friendship that lasts a lifetime” (p. 428)

Click here to purchase Girl, Woman, Other

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