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The Lesser Bohemians
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A story of first love and redemption, from the author of the multi-award-winning A Girl Is a Half-formed Thing.

About the Author

Eimear McBride was born in Liverpool but moved to Ireland when she was three. She grew up in Tubbercurry, Co. Sligo and Castlebar, Co. Mayo, before moving to London aged seventeen to study at the Drama Centre. Her first novel, A Girl Is a Half-formed Thing, won many literary awards including the 2014 Baileys Women's Prize for Fiction and the 2014 Geoffrey Faber Memorial Prize. Her most recent book is The Lesser Bohemians. Eimear lives in Norwich with her family.

Reviews

'McBride writes in a stream of consciousness style that's as accessible as it is startling. It can make the world new at the same time as evoking its timeless fundamentals.' Independent 'Without ever passing judgment, The Lesser Bohemians situates itself at that point of moral, sexual and grammatical uncertainty where, in Eily's words again, "pure is indivisible from its reverse". For me it is the ability to delve so deeply into all of this, more or less regardless, that makes for the unique talent-the wilful, sensuous generosity-of Eimear McBride.' Jacqueline Rose, London Review of Books 'A dazzling, affecting and stimulating read. We can imagine it as Samuel Beckett fused with Henry Miller. Far better, though, to appreciate it for what it really is: the work of one of the most exciting voices in fiction today.' Australian 'The Lesser Bohemians confirms McBride's status as one of our major novelists. She writes with beauty, wisdom and humour and she is uniquely sensitive to what is being communicated with every look or jerk of the body. If, in DH Lawrence's formulation, the novel is "the one bright book of life", then the life here radiates through the pages and illuminates ours.' Guardian 'In both books, language alternately delights and devastates, twisting without turning into a gimmick; instead, the beauty of grammatical function is on display...McBride's second novel is often about excitement and possibility...I found myself almost embarrassed to be devouring it, hoping for the happy ending I was not expecting of McBride or either of these characters.' Vice [A] magnificent, sex-soused, innocence-to-experience rollercoaster...Having put both her characters' and readers' hearts through the wringer, the sweetness that McBride ultimately grants feels earned.' Daily Mail 'McBride is one of the most exciting literary talents to emerge in the last few years.' Financial Times 'McBride is always brilliant on her central theme-the paradox that it is shame that makes us behave shamefully.' Irish Times 'If you rush McBride's sentences, you'll trip...The rewards for adopting a slower pace are linguistic joys and surprises on every page...this extraordinary novel deserves all the success of McBride's first.' New Statesman 'Without ever passing judgment, The Lesser Bohemians situates itself at that point of moral, sexual and grammatical uncertainty where, in Eily's words again, "pure is indivisible from its reverse". For me it is the ability to delve so deeply into all of this, more or less regardless, that makes for the unique talent-the wilful, sensuous generosity-of Eimear McBride.' London Review of Books 'McBride has a rare gift as a writer: she combines high modernism, page-turning plot and melodrama into a narrative that will appeal to mainstream audiences and fans of literary avant garde.' Irish Independent 'This is viscera-bared, blood-to-the-elbows fiction, and that's why it's so effective: like real life, it doesn't stop at the easy breaks.' Bookmunch 'It's a mark of McBride's magic-her genius if you like-that she trusts that readers are perfectly able to knit a coherent sensibility out the non-linearity of thought.' Adelaide Review 'A brilliant balancing act...The mixture of sensory impressions and inner commentary successfully captures the inchoate nature of thought while remaining comprehensible.' Otago Daily Times 'The chopped up words, slammed together sentences and neologisms act with the potency of poetry' Big Issue 'If you like your fiction dark with shocking shards of brilliant illumination, and your characters flawed, sometimes unlikeable but utterly human; and a style that can pull you through a hedge with just about every sentence, this is a book for you.' Booksellers New Zealand 'One of McBride's strengths as a writer is that she doesn't fill in just for the sake of it. The Twitter-style brevity of her sentences-with none of the Twitter-style banality-ensures that it's the reader who's filling in the gaps, not of story or intent but of language. The reader's mind runs alongside hers, and our sentences can, if we want them to, run past hers...There's an openness, an inclusivity, a distinct lack of God-almightyness, that makes reading her such a pleasure.' New York Times 'Rhythms of poetry flow through [McBride's] pages as naturally as blood flows through a body. A sort of poetic machine observes and records every incandescent but momentary physical fluctuation of human existence as a vital sign of life. The reader is hooked up to this miraculous machine from the rush of the opening pages...[McBride] is shifting ideas of what a novel might be. The Lesser Bohemians is hard-going at times but who else uses language like this? A small revolution has occurred.' Monthly '[The Lesser Bohemians] immerses the reader in a headlong, broken-up narrative on love, sex, betrayal and intimacy.' Best Books of 2016, New Zealand Listener 'An urgent, semi-Dostoevskian story of brokenness, sexual awakening, perversion, and (partial) redemption, written in a lively, Joycean style.' -- Shannon Burns Australian Book Review, 2016 Books of the Year 'The standout novel of the year...It's been said that McBride comes trailing James Joyce behind her, but with this second novel she's leaving him in her wake. Triumphant and disturbing.' -- Drussilla Modjeska The Books We Loved 2016, Sydney Morning Herald 'Compared with the first, The Lesser Bohemians is more accessible, perhaps, certainly more unsettling, but undoubtedly further confirmation of a major talent.' -- Ashleigh Wilson Best Books of 2016, Australian 'Urgent, semi-Dostoesvskian story of brokenness, sexual awakening, perversion, and (partial) redemption, written in a lively, Joycean style. McBride's uncompromising first novel, A Girl is a Half-Formed Thing set the bar formidably high, but The Lesser Bohemians doesn't disappoint.' -- Shannon Burns Australian Book Review 'Step inside the head of Eily, an 18-year-old who moves to London to start drama school, begins "worldening" (the process of becoming more worldy)-and starts an affair with Stephen, a charismatic womanizer of 38. The book's laser focus on their relationship, with its many (but never gratuitous) sex scenes, captures the relationship's intensity and uncertainty, and the way love can change you...If you enjoy novels that push the boundaries and get your swept up, this one's for you.' North and South

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