Fred D'aguiar

Bethany Bettany
  • Bethany Bettany

  • A Caribbean country on the verge of collapse. A small town called Boundary. A rambling house inhabited by three generations of the Abrahams family. And a little girl who is trying to make sense of it all.

    Bethany Bettany is five years old when her father dies and her mother leaves her to fend for herself in the Abrahams household. The place simmers with resentment: her uncles and aunts think her mother killed her father; her grandmother refuses to leave her room. Bethany is the scapegoat for it all.

    In Bethany, D'Aguiar has created both a loveable character and a symbol for the search of a nation to make itself whole. If Boundary is Guyana, then Bethany Bettany - a girl torn between two names - is the spirit of its people poised for flight.

Fred D'Aguiar was born in Guyana in 1960 and was raised in South-east London and Guyana. He has held several writing residences, including Northern Arts Literary Fellow, and now divides his time between London and Florida, where he teaches English at the University of Miami. He has been awarded the TS Eliot Prize for poetry, the Guyanese National Poetry Award and the Malcolm X prize for poetry. He also won the 1994 Whitbread First Novel Award and the David Higham Award for The Longest Memory.

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