Assembly (Paperback)Natasha Brown (author)
Perfect reading for fans of Raven Leilani and Jenny Offill, Brown’s incendiary debut investigates the stories we tell ourselves about race and class through the burgeoning realisations of a young Black British woman.
Shortlisted for the Orwell Prize for Political Fiction 2022
Shortlisted for the Rathbones Folio Prize 2022
Come of age in the credit crunch. Be civil in a hostile environment. Step out into a world of Go Home vans. Go to Oxbridge, get an education, start a career. Do all the right things. Buy a flat. Buy art. Buy a sort of happiness. But above all, keep your head down. Keep quiet. And keep going.
The narrator of Assembly is a Black British woman. She is preparing to attend a lavish garden party at her boyfriend's family estate, set deep in the English countryside. At the same time, she is considering the carefully assembled pieces of herself. As the minutes tick down and the future beckons, she can't escape the question: is it time to take it all apart?
Assembly is a story about the stories we live within - those of race and class, safety and freedom, winners and losers. And it is about one woman daring to take control of her own story, even at the cost of her life.
Publisher: Penguin Books Ltd
Number of pages: 112
Weight: 120 g
Dimensions: 196 x 124 x 18 mm
'Natasha Brown's exquisite prose, daring structure and understated elegance are utterly captivating. She is a stunning new writer.' - Bernardine Evaristo, author of the Booker Prize-winning Girl, Woman, Other
'Bold and original, with a cool intelligence, and so very truthful about the colonialist structure of British society: how it has poisoned even our language, making its necessary dismantling almost the stuff of dreams. I take hope from Assembly, not just for our literature but also for our slow awakening.' - Diana Evans, author of the Women's Prize-shortlisted Ordinary People
'Diamond-sharp, timely and urgent... Written in a distilled, minimalist prose, Assembly is illuminating on everything from micro aggressions in the workplace, to the reality of living in the "hostile environment", to the legacy of British colonialism.' - The Observer, Best Debuts of 2021
'Assembly is brilliant. Virginia Woolf's Mrs. Dalloway meets Citizen by Claudia Rankine. Natasha Brown's ability to slide between the tiniest, most telling detail and the edifice of history, the assemblage of so many lives in so many times and places, is as breathtakingly graceful as it is mercilessly true.' - Olivia Sudjic, author of Asylum Road
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“Astonishingly clever & sharp”
Astonishingly clever and sharp.
This is a very short novel, I read in one setting, but was completely absorbed by the observations and experiences of the narrator.
This unnamed black woman carries a huge toll of... More
Assembly by Natasha Brown
Wow, just WOW!!!
I've just finished reading this and I really don't know how to convey how brilliant it is - I'm stunned!
Beautiful poetic writing - brief but packs an... More
“WOW. Deserves all the praise”
I loved this stream of consciousness style novel from our unarmed narrator and her live as a successful Black British woman and how she is treated within society.
Looking at class, education, colonialism and... More
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