Rentrée littéraire 2021En pleine pandémie de grippe espagnole, l'ancien monde est en train de s'effondrer.À la maternité, des femmes luttent pour qu'un autre voie le jour.1918. Trois jours à Dublin, ravagé par la guerre et une terrible épidémie. Trois jours aux côtés de Julia Power, infirmière dans un service réservé aux femmes enceintes touchées par la maladie.
Partout, la confusion règne, et le gouvernement semble impuissant à protéger sa population. À l'aube de ses 30 ans, alors qu'à l'hôpital on manque de tout, Julia se retrouve seule pour gérer ses patientes en quarantaine. Elle ne dispose que de l'aide d'une jeune orpheline bénévole, Bridie Sweeney, et des rares mais précieux conseils du Dr Kathleen Lynn - membre du Sinn Féin recherchée par la police.
Dans une salle exiguë où les âmes comme les corps sont mis à nu, toutes les trois s'acharnent dans leur défi à la mort, tandis que leurs patientes tentent de conserver les forces nécessaires pour donner la vie. Un huis clos intense et fiévreux dont Julia sortira transformée, ébranlée dans ses certitudes et ses repères.
« Room appartient à cette espère si rare, celle des vraies oeuvres d'art. Vous dire qu'il ne ressemble à aucun autre livre est pour moi le plus beau des compliments. Il suffit de décrire sa puissance, sa beauté sombre et pleine de révélations. » Michael CunninghamSur le point de fêter ses cinq ans, Jack a les préoccupations des petits garçons de son âge. Ou presque.
Il ne pense qu'à jouer et à essayer de comprendre le monde qui l'entoure, comptant sur sa mère pour répondre à toutes ses questions. Cette mère occupe dans sa vie une place immense, d'autant plus qu'il habite seule avec elle dans une pièce unique, depuis sa naissance.
Il y a bien les visites du Grand Méchant Nick, mais Ma fait tout pour éviter à Jack le moindre contact avec ce personnage. Jusqu'au jour où elle réalise que l'enfant grandit, et qu'elle ne va pouvoir continuer longtemps à entretenir l'illusion d'une vie ordinaire. Elle va alors tout risquer pour permettre à Jack de s'enfuir.
Mais l'enfant va-t-il réussir à trouver des repères loin de leur univers ? Quel accueil lui réservera le monde extérieur, lui l'enfant né de la captivité d'une femme ?Room interroge la capacité de survie qui existe en chacun de nous, tout en célébrant les pouvoir du récit et du langage. Mais l'auteur résume magnifiquement son principal objet de réflexion : « Le drame essentiel de la parentalité : comment l'on passe d'un instant à l'autre du rôle de celui qui console à celui qui persécute, tout comme les enfants passent leur temps à illuminer notre vie et à nous rendre fous. J'ai essayé de saisir cette étrangeté et ce paradoxe. Devenir parent suscite les émotions les plus folles qu'on puisse ressentir. »
À l'été 1876, la ville de San Francisco suffoque sous une chaleur accablante. Dans le saloon des McNamara, en lisière d'une voie ferrée, un coup de feu retentit dans la nuit. Blanche Beunon échappe de justesse à la mort qui n'épargne pas son amie Jenny. Inconsolable, Blanche va tout mettre en oeuvre pour confondre le meurtrier de Jenny et le conduire devant la justice.
Leur histoire est à l'image de la ville, bruyante et crasseuse, peuplée de femmes au verbe haut, d'hommes jaloux et de chansons des rues. Leur amitié est plus qu'improbable tant elles sont opposées : Jenny est d'un drôle de calibre, une chasseuse de grenouilles qui aime défier la loi en arborant des pantalons et un colt. Danseuse de burlesque aguerrie, Blanche prend la vie comme elle vient au risque de passer à côté d'elle-même et de son enfant, pour le plaisir de son homme et de ses michetons. Leur rencontre accidentelle va changer le cours de leur destin... Une envoûtante histoire de femmes bataillant pour s'affranchir dans le monde sans foi ni loi de la grande ville de l'Ouest.
Égarés est un recueil de quatorze nouvelles structuré en trois parties qui marquent les étapes de l'errance : le départ, la route et l'arrivée.
Avec force détails historiques, l'auteur de Room nous entraîne du Massachussetts puritain au New Jersey révolutionnaire, en passant par la Louisiane belliqueuse, jusqu'aux bas-fonds de Toronto. Par-delà les époques - les nouvelles courent du XVIIe au XXe siècle -, elle dresse le portrait de personnages fascinants et envoûtants : immigrés à la recherche d'une vie meilleure, voleurs de grands chemins, chercheurs d'or, esclaves en quête de liberté, gardiens de zoo, cow-girls, et mères célibataires obligées d'abandonner leur progéniture.
Ces histoires extraordinairement vraies acquièrent sous la plume d'Emma Donoghue une dimension universelle, de vie et d'humanité. On croise ainsi l'éléphant Jumbo obligé de s'engager dans un cirque, le bien célèbre Morissey, bandit devenu agent double sur le point d'arrêter les plus grands faussaires de l'histoire, ou une fausse veuve éplorée qui réussit à faire croire que son mari est mort pour mieux s'enfuir avec son argent.Emma Donoghue montre la preuve de son talent d'écrivain : en évoquant la fuite de l'homme en quête d'une autre existence, et en livrant le portrait de générations obligées à l'exil, elle montre à quel point le voyage est le lieu de la découverte de soi.
In this sparkling collection of nineteen stories, the bestselling author of Slammerkin returns to contemporary affairs, exposing the private dilemmas that result from some of our most public controversies. A man finds God and finally wants to father a child-only his wife is now forty-two years old. A coach's son discovers his sexuality on the football field. A roommate's bizarre;secret liberates a repressed young woman. From the unforeseen consequences of a polite social lie to the turmoil caused by the hair on a woman's chin, Donoghue dramatizes the seemingly small acts upon which our lives often turn. Many of these stories involve animals and what they mean to us, or babies and whether to have them; some replay biblical plots in modern contexts. With characters old, young, straight, gay, and simply confused, Donoghue dazzles with her range and her ability to touch lightly but delve deeply into the human condition.
In these seventeen robust tales Emma Donoghue vividly brings to life the strangely exhilerating sideshows of humanity lost to traditional history over the last seven hundred years. The obscure records she stumbled across--an engraving of a woman giving birth to rabbits; a plague ballad; surgical case notes; theological pamphlets; an articulated skeleton--are ingeniously expanded into rollicking, full bodied fictions. Here kings, surgeons, soldiers, and ladies of leisure rub soldiers with cross-dressers, cult leaders, pioneers, and arsonists. /> Whether she's spinning the tale of an Irish soldier tricked into marrying a dowdy spinster, a Victorian surgeon's attempts to "improve" women, a seventeenth century countess who ran away to Italy disguised as a man, or an "undead" murderess returning for the maid she left behind to be executed in her place, Emma Donoghue brings to her tales a colorful, elegant prose filled with the sights and smells and sounds of the period. She summons the ghosts of those women who counted for nothing in their own day and brings them to unforgettable life in fiction.
Set in London and Monmouth in the late 1700s, this is an extraordinary novel about Mary Saunders, the young daughter of a poor seamstress. Mary hungers greedily for fine clothes and ribbons, as people of her class do for food and warmth. It's a hunger that lures her into prostitution at the age of thirteen. Mary is thrown out by her distraught mother when she gets pregnant and almost dies on the dangerous streets of London. Her saviour is Doll - a prostitute. Mary roams London freely with Doll, selling her body to all manner of 'cullies', dressed whorishly in colourful, gaudy dresses with a painted red smile.Faced with bad debts and threats upon her life she eventually flees to Monmouth, her mother's hometown, where she attempts to start a new life as a maid in Mrs Jones's house. But Mary soon discovers that she can't escape her past and just how dearly people like her pay for yearnings not fitting to their class in society...
A love story. A gamble. A battle. Let the games begin.It's an era of looming war, and the erosion of freedom in the name of national security. A time of high art and big business, trashy spectacles and financial disasters. Celebrities are hounded by journalists, who serve up private passions alongside public crises. Marriages stretch or break, and so do friendships; political liaisons prove as dangerous as erotic ones. In Parliament, on stage, in the bedroom, at the race track, round the dinner table, old loyalties are wrenched by the winds of change. The World - as elite calls itself - is fighting to survive these chaotic times.
With the turn of each page, the characters that roam across these pages go astray. They are emigrants, runaways, drifters; gold miners and counterfeiters, attorneys and slaves. They cross borders of race, law, sex, and sanity. They travel for love or money, under duress or incognito. This fascinating collection from Emma Donoghue, author of the internationally bestselling Room, is a sequence of fourteen fact-inspired fictions about travels to, in and from North America, Astray offers a past in scattered pieces, a surprising and moving history for restless times.
Passions Between Women looks at stories of lesbian desires, acts and identities from the Restoration to the beginning of the nineteenth century. Far from being invisible, the figure of the woman who felt passion for women in this period was a subject of confusion and contradiction: she could be put in a freak show as a 'hermaphrodite', denounced as a 'tribade' or 'lesbian', revered as a 'romantic friend', jailed as a 'female husband' or gossiped about as a 'woman-lover', 'tommy' or 'Sapphist'. Through an examination of a wealth of new medical, legal and erotic source material, together with re-readings of classics of English literature, Emma Donoghue uncovers the astonishing range of lesbian and bisexual identities described in British texts between 1668 and 1801. Female pirates and spiritual mentors, chambermaids and queens, poets and prostitutes, country idylls and whipping clubs all take their place in an intriguing panorama of lesbian lives and loves.'Controversial, erotic and radical, Emma Donoghue's lesbian voyage of exploration outlines an astonishing spectrum of gender rebellion which creates a new map of eighteenth-century sexual territories and identities.' Patricia Duncker
Frog Music is an atmospheric and gripping novel by Emma Donoghue, author of the multi-million-copy bestseller Room, adapted as a major motion picture directed by Lenny Abrahamson.San Francisco, 1876: a stifling heat wave and smallpox epidemic have engulfed the City.Deep in the streets of Chinatown live three former stars of the Parisian circus: Blanche, now an exotic dancer at the House of Mirrors, her lover Arthur and his companion Ernest.When an eccentric outsider joins their little circle, secrets unravel, changing everything - and leaving one of them dead.Inspired by a true unsolved crime, Frog Music, a New York Times bestseller, is a dark and compelling story of intrigue and murder.
;LANDING;is an old-fashioned love story set in the early twenty-first century, a dark comedy about the peculiar pleasures and sorrows of keeping up long-distance relationships by plane, phone and Internet. Síle (pronounced like Sheila), an Irishwoman with an Indian mother, is a stylish citizen of the new (expensive, stressful, pomo) Dublin. A veteran flight attendant at 40, she is getting itchy in her career as much as in her domestic life. Jude, a 25-year-old archivist, stubbornly attached to the tiny town of Ireland, Ontario, has never been on a plane before. Two worlds touch and snag at Heathrow Airport on New Year's Day, and over the course of a year, Jude's and Síle's lives, and those of their friends and families, will be drawn into a new, shaky orbit. The local collides with the eclectic, the historical with the global.;LANDING is an allusive, sparkling, dialogue-based story about some of the biggest questions: Which things about you make you you? Does where you live matter more than who you live with? What would you give up for love, and would you be an idiot to?
;Since the lovers are both women, it could be called a lesbian novel, but a post-closet one, which addresses its insights and jokes to the widest readership.
In Kissing the Witch, Emma Donoghue (author of the Man Booker and Orange prize shortlisted novel Room) unwinds thirteen fairy tales and writes them anew: Cinderella forsakes the handsome prince and runs off with the fairy godmother, Beauty discovers the Beast behind the mask is not so very different from the face she sees in the mirror, and Snow White is awakened from slumber by the bittersweet fruit of an unnamed desire. In these stories, Emma Donoghue reveals heroines young and old in unexpected alliances - sometimes treacherous, sometimes erotic, but always courageous. Told with luminous voices that shimmer with sensuality and truth, these age-old characters shed their antiquated cloaks to travel a seductive new landscape, radiantly transformed.
Hood is a powerful and moving story of a hidden, secret grief from Emma Donoghue, the author of Room.Penelope O'Grady and Cara Wall are risking disaster when, like teenagers in any intolerant time and place - here, a Dublin convent school in the late 1970s - they fall in love. Yet Cara, the free spirit, and Pen, the stoic, craft a bond so strong it seems as though nothing could sever it: not the bickering, not the secrets, not even Cara's infidelities. But thirteen years on, a car crash kills Cara and rips the lid off Pen's world. Pen is still in the closet, teaching at her old school, living under the roof of Cara's gentle father, who thinks of her as his daughter's friend. How can she survive widowhood without even daring to claim the word? Over the course of one surreal week of bereavement, she is battered by memories that range from the humiliating, to the exalted, to the erotic, to the funny. It will take Pen all her intelligence and wit to sort through her tumultuous past with Cara, and all the nerve she can muster to start remaking her life.
Seventeen and sure of nothing, Maria has left her parents' small-town grocery for university life in Dublin. An ad in the Student Union-"2 women seek flatmate. No bigots."-leads Maria to a home with warm Ruth and wickedly funny Jael, students who are older and more fascinating than she'd expected. A poignant, funny, and sharply insightful coming-of-age story, Emma Donogue's Stir-Fry is a lesbian novel that explores the conundrum of desire arising in the midst of friendship and probes feminist ideas of sisterhood and nonpossessiveness.
How do you make conversation with a sperm donor? How do you say someone's novel is drivel? Would you give a screaming baby brandy? In what words would you tell your girlfriend to pluck a hair on her chin?Touchy Subjects is about things that make people wince: taboos, controversies, secrets and lies. Some of the events that characters crash into are grand, tragic ones: miscarriage, overdose, missing persons, a mother who deserts her children. Other topics, like religion and money, are not inherently taboo, but they can cause acute discomfort because people disagree so vehemently. Many of these stories are about the spectrum of constrained, convoluted feeling that runs from awkwardness through embarrassment to shame.
The bestselling author of Slammerkin vividly brings to life the Beau Monde of late eighteenth-century England, turning the private drama of three celebrated Londoners into a robust, full-bodied portrait of a world on the brink of revolution. In a time of looming war, of glittering spectacle and financial disasters, the wealthy liberals of the Whig Party work to topple a tyrannical prime minister and a lunatic king. Marriages and friendships stretch or break; political liaisons prove as dangerous as erotic ones; and everyone wears a mask. /> This is a remakable novel in the tradition of the very best historical fiction.
Miss Emily "Fido" Faithfull is a "woman of business" and a spinster pioneer in the British women’s movement, independent of mind but naively trusting of heart. Distracted from her cause by the sudden return of a once-dear friend, the unhappily wed Helen Codrington, Fido is swept up in the intimate details of Helen’s failing marriage and obsessive affair with a young army officer. What begins as a loyal effort to help a friend explodes into an intriguing courtroom drama complete with accusations of adultery, counterclaims of rape, and a mysterious letter that could destroy more than one life.Based on a scandalous divorce case that gripped England in 1864, The Sealed Letter is a riveting, provocative drama of friends, lovers, and divorce, Victorian-style.
Slammerkin: A loose gown; a loose woman.
Born to rough cloth in Hogarth's London, but longing for silk, Mary Saunders's eye for a shiny red ribbon leads her to prostitution at a young age. A dangerous misstep sends her fleeing to Monmouth, and the position of household seamstress, the ordinary life of an ordinary girl with no expectations. But Mary has known freedom, and having never known love, it is freedom that motivates her. Mary asks herself if the prostitute who hires out her body is more or less free than the "honest woman" locked into marriage, or the servant who runs a household not her own? And is either as free as a man? Ultimately, Mary remains true only to the three rules she learned on the streets: Never give up your liberty. Clothes make the woman. Clothes are the greatest lie ever told.
Love between women crops up throughout literature: from Chaucer and Shakespeare to Charlotte Brontë, Dickens, Agatha Christie, and many more. In Inseparable Emma Donoghue examines how desire between women in literature has been portrayed, from schoolgirls and vampires to runaway wives, from cross-dressing knights to contemporary murder stories. Donoghue looks at the work of those writers who have addressed the 'unspeakable subject', examining whether such desire between women is freakish or omnipresent, holy or evil, heart-warming or ridiculous as she excavates a long-obscured tradition of female friendship, one that is surprisingly central to our cultural history. A revelation of a centuries-old literary tradition - brilliant, amusing, and until now, deliberately overlooked.
A delightful, old-fashioned love story with a uniquely twenty-first-century twist, Emma Donoghue's Landing is a romantic comedy that explores the pleasures and sorrows of long-distance relationships-the kind millions of us now maintain mostly by plane, phone, and Internet. Síle is a stylish citizen of the new Dublin, a veteran flight attendant who's traveled the world. Jude is a twenty-five-year-old archivist, stubbornly attached to the tiny town of Ireland, Ontario, in which she was born and raised. On her first plane trip, Jude's and Síle's worlds touch and snag at Heathrow Airport. In the course of the next year, their lives, and those of their friends and families, will be drawn into a new, shaky orbit. This sparkling, lively story from the author of Room, explores age-old questions: Does where you live matter more than who you live with? What would you give up for love, and would you be a fool to do so?
The Woman Who Gave Birth to Rabbits is a book of fictions, but they are also true. Over the last ten years, I have often stumbled over a scrap of history so fascinating that I had to stop whatever I was doing and write a story about it. My sources are the flotsam and jetsam of the last seven hundred years of British and Irish life: surgical case-notes; trial records; a plague ballad; theological pamphlets; a painting of two girls in a garden; an articulated skeleton. Some of the ghosts in this collection have famous names; others were written off as cripples, children, half-breeds, freaks and nobodies. The Woman Who Gave Birth to Rabbits is named for Mary Toft, who in 1726 managed to convince half England that she had done just that.So this book is what I have to show for ten years of sporadic grave-robbing, ferreting out forgotten puzzles and peculiar incidents, asking 'What really happened?', but also, 'What if?
A major film starring Brie Larson
Shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize
Shortlisted for the Orange Prize
With an introduction by John BoyneToday I'm five. I was four last night going to sleep in Wardrobe, but when I wake up in Bed in the dark I'm changed to five, abracadabra.Jack lives with his Ma in Room. Room has a single locked door and a skylight, and it measures ten feet by ten feet. Jack loves watching TV but he knows that nothing he sees on the screen is truly real - only him, Ma and the things in Room. Until the day Ma admits there is a world outside.Devastating yet uplifting, Room by Emma Donoghue is a luminous portrait of a boundless maternal love. It has sold more than two million copies, was a number one bestseller and was shortlisted for the Man Booker and Orange prizes. Few books have reached modern classic status so swiftly.
An eleven-year-old girl stops eating, but remains miraculously alive and well. A nurse, sent to investigate whether she is a fraud, meets a journalist hungry for a story. Set in the Irish Midlands in the 1850s, Emma Donoghue's The Wonder - inspired by numerous European and North American cases of 'fasting girls' between the sixteenth century and the twentieth - is a psychological thriller about a child's murder threatening to happen in slow motion before our eyes. Pitting all the seductions of fundamentalism against sense and love, it is a searing examination of what nourishes us, body and soul.