Booth: Longlisted for the Booker Prize 2022 (Hardback)
  • Booth: Longlisted for the Booker Prize 2022 (Hardback)
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Booth: Longlisted for the Booker Prize 2022 (Hardback)

(author)
£18.99
Hardback 480 Pages
Published: 17/03/2022
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Waterstones Says

The award-winning author of We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves delivers a mesmerising nineteenth-century saga of a thespian family whose six siblings come to adulthood in the shadow of the American Civil War and one of whom goes on to make the fatal decision to assassinate President Lincoln.

Longlisted for The Booker Prize 2022

Sunday Times Novel of the Year 2022

Booth tells the story of the brilliant and disastrously ill-fated Booth family. Junius is the patriarch, a celebrated Shakespearean actor who fled bigamy charges in England, both a mesmerising talent and a man of terrifying instability. As his children grow up in a remote farmstead in 1820s rural Baltimore, the country draws ever closer to the boiling point of secession and civil war.

Of the six Booth siblings who survive to adulthood, each has their own dreams they must fight to realise - but it is Johnny who makes the terrible decision that will change the course of history - the assassination of Abraham Lincoln. Booth is a riveting novel focused on the very things that bind, and break, a family.

Publisher: Profile Books Ltd
ISBN: 9781788168632
Number of pages: 480
Weight: 712 g
Dimensions: 238 x 162 x 44 mm
Edition: Main


MEDIA REVIEWS

Booth is a triumph! No one writes like Karen Joy Fowler. With wit, heart, and revelatory insight, she teases ghosts from their shadows, transforming the way we see the past, shedding new light on our troubled present. - Ruth Ozeki

Accomplished, immersive, and profoundly satisfying. Booth is both highly relevant to modern life and a fully realised piece of fiction. I loved learning about the Booth family and all their eccentricities, set against the backdrop of American history. I can't praise it highly enough, what a range Karen Joy Fowler has. - Cathy Rentzenbrink

Booth is a subtly devastating meditation on how the USA arrived at this troubled point in its present history by looking at a mid-nineteenth-century family. Its world - dense, granular, intricate - is created with immense care and precision ... This is her finest, most beautiful novel to date. - Neel Mukherjee

With each book, Karen Joy Fowler masterfully fuses style with subject, prose with plot, and explores the terrifying power that parents wield. Booth brilliantly cracks open the history of a country and a family and shows us the private secrets and suspicions that run underneath. - Jonathan Lee, author of The Great Mistake

The historical context [Fowler] offers is of a pre-Civil War America of deep moral divides, political differences tearing close families apart, populism and fanaticism run amok. The similarities to today are riveting and chilling. - Kirkus starred review

Fowler sets the stage in remarkable prose ... the nuanced plot is both historically rigorous and richly imagined. This is a winner - Publishers Weekly starred review

Booth is an epic tale of a divided country seen through the prism of an extraordinary family and with uncanny parallels to the present moment. Stunning. - Simon Humphreys, Mail on Sunday

A historical epic that's like Succession set against the backdrop of the looming Civil War in 1830s America. Explaining so much of the country's history while telling a deeply immersive story, it's an unforgettable read - Stylist Best New Books March 2022

An impressive epic - Independent, Books of the Month

An imaginative new novel offers glimpses of John Wilkes Booth, Abraham Lincoln's killer, and his family, told chiefly through the perspectives of some of his nine siblings - The New York Times, books to read in March 2022

An intimate, engaging portrait of a tribe whose aims and alliances were always shifting, buffeted by tragedy (several beloved siblings died young) and fickle fortunes - Entertainment Weekly

Effortlessly resonant... breathes rich imaginative colour in her characters - Claire Allfree, Daily Telegraph

Karen Joy Fowler's novels are wildly inventive and deservedly popular - Daily Mail

Captures with enthralling vividness a country caught in the grip of fanatical populism, ripped apart by irreconcilable political differences and boiling with fury and rage .... An unalloyed triumph. Like Hilary Mantel in her Wolf Hall trilogy, Fowler skilfully exploits the present tense to remake the past as something surprising and new - Clare Clark, Literary Review

The Booths have receded into history, but in Fowler's telling their stories - personal and political - remain painfully relevant ... Booth is yet another urgent reminder that the US has been down the road to disunion before, with horrific consequences. - Financial Times

Fowler's riveting saga explores these strains of familial devotion and sorrow connecting the colorful Booth brothers and sisters - Washington Post

Booth doesn't hold anyone in judgment; like all the best literature, it seeks to better understand the human heart in all its flawed complexity. It's a haunting book, not just for all its literal ghosts, but for its suggestion that those ghosts still have not been exorcised from this country. - USA Today

She weaves an intimate, engaging portrait of a tribe whose aims and alliances were always shifting, buffeted by tragedy (several beloved siblings died young) and fickle fortunes. - Entertainment Weekly

Masterful...Fowler's excavation of this material is astonishing in its breadth and specificity, treating events of historical record with the same detail and care as secret bedtime talks and plays staged in treetops. - San Francisco Chronicle

Fowler returns here with an ambitious and consequential saga about a family with a monster in their midst. - Philadelphia Inquirer

Solid research mixed with empathetic imagination enriches Booth. - Christian Science Monitor

Fowler unfurls the Booths' tumultuous, theatrical lives against the backdrop of an unruly America, mired in the brutal violence of the Civil War, in this troubling, nuanced, engrossing novel - Eithne Farry, Daily Mail

A labyrinthine and detailed exploration of the family... Fowler has form in family dynamics: her joyous, heart-breaking novel We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves anatomised the complexities of parental and sibling bonds under extraordinary stress. She does something similar in Booth, charting the personal stories that culminated on that fateful day in Washington. - Spectator

Drives home with rich theatrical flair the extent to which contemporary America remains locked inside the ugly ideological battles of the Civil War - Claire Allfree, Telegraph

Booth manages to combine its interests with great skill, depicting slavery and all of its horrors accurately, while also showing the political consequences as those in the Union tentatively seeking abolition... Anyone with an interest in American history, family life 150 or so years ago or the stage should relish a book that brings all three together in a dramatic story that is both informative and enjoyable throughout - British Theatre Guide

History may claim to be about facts, but stories, like families, are largely about feeling, and the novel gives us feeling on a grand scale, even as it asks pertinent and topical questions about who owns those facts ... In its stretch and imaginative depth, Booth has an utterly seductive authority - Guardian

Brilliantly recounts the story of the American theatrical dynasty that produced Lincoln's assassin, John Wilkes Booth ... The story moves inevitably towards the fatal encounter in Ford's Theatre, but its strengths lie in its depiction of the decades-long interactions and rivalries between the various members of an extraordinary family. - Sunday Times Book of the Month

Captivating ... looks beyond the criminal - Press Association

Enjoyable and exceptionally poignant - Alex Clark, Irish Times

A slice of social history, subtly evoking the horrors of slavery and touching on the fanatical populism that kept such a system in place. You don't have to look too hard to find such echoes today. - The Crack

A wonderful evocation of the colourful family life of John Wilkes Booth ... Deftly conjuring a 19th-century America riven by Civil War, it is a cautionary tale of divisive politics and rash impulses present-day world leaders should pay heed to. - Traveller

Fascinating - Metro

Absorbing and expansive - Irish Times

Absorbing and expansive new novel ... an insightful look at both a unique family and the dark roots of modern America. - Anna Carey, the Irish Times

Utterly brilliant - Irish Catholic

The epic-sized tale of an ill-fated theatrical family living in 183Os Baltimore as civil war draws ever closer, this is a whip- smart, funny, inventive and blazing triumph of a book - Rachel Joyce

Moving and colourful and tragic - Evening Standard

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“A true epic…”

This epic historical novel follows America’s most infamous family, the Booths and their son John Wilkes Booth.

We get the real history of the Booth family written in the style of a Shakespearean tragedy. The... More

Hardback edition
3 similar books recommended
Helpful? Upvote 51

“Luminous and Powerful”

I was fortunate enough to have access to an advance review copy of Booth. It is an absolutely wonderful piece of historical writing, compelling all the way through even though we know how it must end. I loved it.

Hardback edition
Helpful? Upvote 34

“Awesome”

An engrossing, enthralling story which kept me hooked and desperate for every free second so I can read more. Unforgettable, informative and unputdownable in equal measure. Make this a MUST X 1000 read of 2022.

Hardback edition
Helpful? Upvote 28

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