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Fight Night

by Miriam Toews

faber & faber

This book absolutely stole my heart!  Three generations of women living under one roof:  9-year old Swiv, her very pregnant Mum and her feisty Grandma Elvira.

Swiv has been expelled from school and Grandma is taking care of her while her preoccupied and exhausted Mum is at work but this is problematic on two fronts – the education Grandma offers is definitely not on any school curriculum and Grandma’s health is failing so the roles are very often, poignantly, switched.

Quirky Grandma Elvira is the star of the show. Despite the horrors that life has thrown at her, she manages to wring the joy out of every situation, making friends wherever she goes and surprising everyone with her eccentricities and crazy antics.  Fight Night is told mostly from Swiv’s perspective. There’s a very real sense of a race against time – the imminent arrival of Swiv’s baby sibling plus the battle to keep Grandma alive – as these three charming characters face life’s greatest challenges together.  I loved it!

Watch my review on instagram here

I doubt I’ll read a better novel – Big Issue

Go Grandma Elvira! – Margaret Atwood

Wickedly funny and fearlessly honest – The New Yorker

A love letter to our brave and brilliant matriarchs- Glamour

As compelling and hilarious and indecently sad as life can be – Financial Times

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