Faber & Faber, £9.99
Country Girl: A Memoir, By Edna O'Brien
Arifa Akbar is literary editor of The Independent and i newspapers. She has worked at The Independent since 2001 as a news reporter and arts correspondent before joining the books desk in 2009. She was a judge for the Orwell Prize for books 2013, and the Fiction Uncovered Prize 2014, and is currently judging the Aesthetica Magazine new writing prize.
Friday 31 May 2013
How many literary writers can boast of spending a (chaste) night with Marlon Brando? Or having Richard Burton ring their doorbell, just on the off-chance?
Edna O'Brien's life story is starry, but the glitz is levened by inner torments (the loss of virginity is accompanied by not one but two Catholic confessions), heartbreak (divorce and battle for custody of her sons) and taboo-busting (her incendiary debut, The Country Girls).
This memoir shimmers with heart, soul and literary brilliance.
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