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Maud Martha (Faber Editions)

Gwendolyn Brooks

The stunning only novel by the celebrated poet and first Black author to win a Pulitzer Prize, introduced by Margo Jefferson.

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Format
Ebook
ISBN
9780571373260
Date Published
03.05.2022
Delivery
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Summary

The stunning only novel by the celebrated poet and first Black author to win a Pulitzer Prize, introduced by Margo Jefferson.

‘Such a wonderful book. Utterly unique, exquisitely crafted and quietly powerful. I loved it and want everyone to read this lost literary treasure.’ Bernardine Evaristo
‘Maud Martha finds beauty in the brutal formative moments that make us. It is one of my favorite depictions of how a woman comes to trust her eyes.’ Raven Leilani
‘The quotidian rises to an exquisite portraiture of black womanhood in the hands of one of America’s most foundational writers.’ Claudia Rankine
‘Maud Martha reveals the poetry, power, and splendor of an ordinary life.’ Tayari Jones

What, what, am I to do with all of this life?

Maud Martha Brown is a little girl growing up on the South Side of 1940s Chicago. Amidst the crumbling taverns and overgrown yards, she dreams: of New York, romance, her future. She admires dandelions, learns to drink coffee, falls in love, decorates her kitchenette, visits the Jungly Hovel, guts a chicken, buys hats, gives birth. But her lighter-skinned husband has dreams too: of the Foxy Cats Club, other women, war. And the ‘scraps of baffled hate’ – a certain word from a saleswoman; that visit to the cinema; the cruelty of a department store Santa Claus– are always there …

Written in 1953 but never published in Britain, Maud Martha is a poetic collage of happenings that forms an extraordinary portrait of an ordinary life: one lived with wisdom, humour, protest, rage, dignity, and joy.

Critic Reviews

Such a wonderful book. Utterly unique, exquisitely crafted and quietly powerful. I loved it and want everyone to read this lost literary treasure.

Bernardine Evaristo
Critic Reviews

One of the major American poets of the 20th century. She was a writer of great power and great empathy, and wrote lines and sentences as good as anybody’s – better, really, than almost everybody’s ...Sentence by sentence, chapter by chapter, Brooks shows herself to be a prose stylist of the first order. *****

Telegraph *****
Critic Reviews

Extraordinary ... Delights in sensory and emotional details ... Luminous ... Maud Martha doesn’t deny racism’s power, but she denies its power to rule her life.

Margo Jefferson
Critic Reviews

Maud Martha finds beauty in the brutal formative moments that make us. It is one of my favorite depictions of how a woman comes to trust her eyes.

Raven Leilani
Critic Reviews

The quotidian rises to an exquisite portraiture of black womanhood in the hands of one of America's most foundational writers.

Claudia Rankine
Critic Reviews

Maud Martha reveals the poetry, power, and splendor of an ordinary life.

Tayari Jones
GwendolynBrooks

Gwendolyn Brooks (1917 – 2000) was an American poet, educator, and civil rights activist based in Chicago. Her first collection, A Street in Bronzeville (1945), was greeted with critical acclaim and a Guggenheim fellowship. Annie Allen (1949) won the Pulitzer Prize in 1950, making her the first ever Black author to do so; and her only novel, Maud Martha, was…

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GwendolynBrooks