The extraordinary new novel from the acclaimed writer whose previous book, Martin John, was shortlisted for the Giller Prize, and whose debut, Malarky, won the Amazon First Novel Award.
"My name is Bina and I'm a very busy woman. That's Bye-na, not Beena. I don't know who Beena is but I expect she's having a happy life. I don't know who you are, or the state of your life. But if you've come all this way here to listen to me, your life will undoubtedly get worse. I'm here to warn you ..."
So begins this "novel in warnings"--an unforgettable tour de force in the voice of an ordinary-extraordinary woman who has simply had enough. Through the character of Bina, who is writing out her story on the backs of discarded envelopes, Anakana Schofield filters a complex moral universe filled with humour and sadness, love and rage, and the consolations, obligations and mysteries of lifelong friendship. A work of great power, skill, and transformative empathy from a unique and astonishing writer, whose previous book, Martin John, was shortlisted for the Giller Prize, and whose debut, Malarky, won the Amazon First Novel Award.
"Anakana Schofield's Bina is a fiction of the rarest and darkest kind, a work whose pleasures must be taken measure for measure with its pains. Few writers operate the scales of justice with more precision, and Schofield is no less exacting in what she chooses to weigh. The novel's themes--male violence, the nature of moral courage, the contemporary problems of truth and individuality, the status of the female voice--could hardly be more timely or germane. Schofield's sense of injustice is unblinking and without illusion, yet her writing is so vivacious, so full of interest and lust for life: she is the most compassionate of storytellers, wearing the guise of the blackest comedian." --Rachel Cusk, Giller Prize-shortlisted author of Outline and Transit
"Intimate, disarming, and riotous, Bina is a searing exploration of one woman's soul that unwinds like a reluctant confession. Whether Bina is rescuing a ne'er-do-well from a ditch, taking a hammer to a plane or considering the dark request of her best friend, Schofield has created a compelling, practical everywoman--someone who has had enough and is ready to make a spectacle." --Eden Robinson, Giller Prize-shortlisted author of Son of a Trickster and Monkey Beach
"Insightful. Inventive. Hilarious. Genius." --Eimear McBride, author of A Girl Is a Half-Formed Thing, winner of the Bailey's Prize for Women's Fiction, and The Lesser Bohemians, winner of the James Tait Memorial Prize
APPLE BOOKS REVIEW
This caustic novel kicks off with a mic drop—it’s dedicated to “every woman who has had enough.” From there, Bina barrels on in the indelible voice of a fiery older Irishwoman with a few scores to settle. Anakana Schofield’s heroine tells her story in fits and starts, scribbling recollections on the back of any bill, envelope, or paper scrap she can find; she’s got to get everything down fast before the cops break through her front door. What emerges out of these fragments—told in prose that is by turns melancholy, incendiary, and bone-dry—is a wildly inventive examination of male violence, female agency, friendship, and justice.