Nominated by:

de Bibliotheek Rotterdam, The Netherlands

Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh, USA

Publisher of nominated edition:

Picador, UK

Riverhead Books, USA

Boy, Snow, Bird

Helen Oyeyemi      

2016 Longlist

BOY Novak turns twenty and decides to try for a brand-new life. Flax Hill, Massachusetts, isn’t exactly a welcoming town, but it does have the virtue of being the last stop on the bus route she took from New York. Flax Hill is also the hometown of Arturo Whitman – craftsman, widower, and father of Snow.

SNOW is mild-mannered, radiant and deeply cherished – exactly the sort of little girl Boy never was, and Boy is utterly beguiled by her. If Snow displays a certain inscrutability at times, that’s simply a characteristic she shares with her father, harmless until Boy gives birth to Snow’s sister, Bird.

When BIRD is born Boy is forced to re-evaluate the image Arturo’s family have presented to her, and Boy, Snow and Bird are broken apart.

Sparkling with wit and vibrancy, Boy, Snow, Bird is a deeply moving novel about three women and the strange connection between them.

(from publisher)

About the Author

Helen Oyeyemi is the author of four novels, including White is for Witching, which won a 2010 Somerset Maugham Award, and Mr Fox.

Librarians’ Comments

Oyeyemi weaves three different women with three different viewpoints, not always in alignment. Race and the idea of family cut ribbons through this beautifully crafted novel. A superb, modern re-imagining of a well-known classic fairy tale.

A powerful story about racial identity.

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