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.
About the Author
Edna O'Brien is the author of more than twenty-five books, including The Light of Evening. Born in County Clare, Ireland, she now lives in London.
“This is Auden’s Icarus story, though it happens at eye level, right on planet Earth, while everyone’s looking—or could. It’s horrific, as the writer intended, though the Girl endures and is finally released from many forms of captivity, into the light. It’s never wan, the light of love.” —Ann Beattie
“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