Bernardine Evaristo's Mr Loverman: 'Brokeback Mountain with ackee and saltfish and old people' Dawn French
Barrington Jedidiah Walker is seventy-four and leads a double life. Born and bred in Antigua, he's lived in Hackney since the sixties. A flamboyant, wise-cracking local character with a dapper taste in retro suits and a fondness for quoting Shakespeare, Barrington is a husband, father and grandfather - but he is also secretly homosexual, lovers with his great childhood friend, Morris.
His deeply religious and disappointed wife, Carmel, thinks he sleeps with other women. When their marriage goes into meltdown, Barrington wants to divorce Carmel and live with Morris, but after a lifetime of fear and deception, will he manage to break away?
Mr Loverman is a ground-breaking exploration of Britain's older Caribbean community, which explodes cultural myths and fallacies and shows the extent of what can happen when people fear the consequences of being true to themselves.
Praise for Bernardine Evaristo:
'One of Britain's most innovative authors . . . Bernardine Evaristo always dares to be different' New Nation
'Evaristo remains an undeniably bold and energetic writer, whose world view is anything but one-dimensional' Sunday Times
'Audacious genre-bending, in-yer-face wit and masterly retellings of underwritten corners of history are the hallmarks of Evaristo's work' New Statesman
Bernardine Evaristo is the author of seven books including three critically acclaimed verse novels, Lara, The Emperor's Babe and Soul Tourists. Mr Loverman is her second prose novel, after 2008's Blonde Roots, which was longlisted for the Orange Prize and won the Orange Prize Youth Panel Award. Evaristo's other awards include the EMMA Best Book, Arts Council Award and the Big Red Read Award. She is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature and was awarded an MBE in 2009. She lives in London.
Bernardine Evaristo is the Anglo-Nigerian award-winning author of seven books of fiction and verse fiction that explore aspects of the African diaspora: past, present, real, imagined. Her writing also spans short fiction, reviews, essays, drama and writing for BBC radio. She is Professor of Creative Writing at Brunel University London and Vice Chair of the Royal Society of Literature. As a literary activist for inclusion, Bernardine Evaristo has founded several successful initiatives including Theatre of Black Women (1982-86), Spread the Word writer development agency (1995-present); The Complete Works mentoring scheme for poets of colour (2007-17) and the Brunel International African Poetry Prize (2012 - ongoing). www.bevaristo.com