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Booker Prize 2019 Shortlist: Girl, Woman, Other by Bernadine Evaristo


Book Worm’s Thoughts: I really enjoyed this book, it manages to cover every aspect of being female that you can think of. It features strong female characters in a variety of roles and relationships.

Why this could win: The narrative structure is interesting with the lack of punctuation being balanced out by the page layout. Women’s issues are a big talking point right now and a book dedicated purely to women is still fairly unusual.

Why it might not win: Writing purely about women, women’s issues and lives does rule out half of the population the judges may go for a book that is as topical but more inclusive overall.

Anita’s Thoughts: Why this could win: This book is character driven, poetic, and topical all at once.  To me, this book stands out in all the ways I want good literature to stand out, without being preachy or condescending to the reader. It was my favorite of the Booker nominated titles I’ve been able to read thus far.

Why it might not win:  This book is more quietly excellent as opposed to a “look at me, look at how I can write” kind of title.

Nicole’s Thoughts:  I know I’m in the minority on this book, but it’s a slog for me.  Only read 11% and am uninspired to read more.

Why this could win:  Everybody seems to really love it, timely.

Why it might not win:  Not really a novel.

Tracy’s Thoughts:  I loved this book. It’s my favorite from the shortlist. My fear is that it is more of a Women’s Prize winner than a Booker winner. 

Why this could win:   The writing, the characters, the timeliness and social commentary.

Susie’s Thoughts: This one I could take or leave. A few weeks after having read it, and my memory is getting hazy.

Why this could win: Evaristo has showcased challenges for women in contemporary life, making the novel very relevant.

Why it might not win: There was a sense of distance that made it hard to connect at times.

Lisa’s Thoughts: I have not read this book because I have not been able to get my hands on it yet. But based on reviews, this is my favorite of the short list.

Why this could win: Linked short stories, range of voices. There have been lots of books primarily about men. So let’s have one about women.

Why it might not win:  Since I haven’t read it yet…. it could be nowhere near as good as everyone says?



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