Eimear McBride interviews the multi-award winning Irish author Edna O’Brien on the day that Girl, her first novel since 2015’s extraordinarily praised The Little Red Chairs, is published.
Captured, abducted and married into Boko Haram, the narrator of Girl 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 north-eastern 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?
Eimear McBride is the author of two novels: The Lesser Bohemians (James Tait Black Memorial Prize) and A Girl is a Half-formed Thing (Bailey's Women's Prize for Fiction, Irish Novel of the Year, the Goldsmiths Prize, and others). She was the inaugural creative fellow at the Beckett Research Centre, University of Reading and occasionally writes for the Guardian, TLS, New Statesman and the Irish Times.
Be the first to hear about Edna O’Brien’s major new work and spend time with one of our greatest living authors.
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