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Bernardine’s first non-fiction book, Manifesto: On Never Giving Up, is a memoir in which she looks at her creativity through the prism of her heritage and life – from childhood through to today.


Times and Sunday Times Book of the Year
Apple Books, Best 15 Books of 2021
A Waterstones Best Book of 2021
A Daunts Book of the Year 2021
Stylist Best Book for Christmas 2021

What They’re Saying

‘When Bernardine Evaristo won the 2019 Booker prize, the acceptance speech wasn’t a problem. Decades previously, as a little-known writer trying to boost her self-confidence with “creative affirmations”, she had fully visualised herself winning the prize. This honest, engaging memoir shares such gems, along with details of Evaristo’s working-class south London childhood — she was one of eight — and the obstacles she overcame as a mixed-race woman in the arts. An optimist, powered by gritty self-belief, she scatters generous tips throughout; the perfect read for anyone who dreams big.’

A Times & Sunday Times (joint) ‘Book of the Year’

‘Manifesto is a beautiful, thoughtful and honest book about never giving up, even when it feels like you are “writing into a void”. It is also a meditation on personal transformation, cultural inequalities, activism, belonging, love and friendships – and above all, the power of creativity.’

New Statesman

‘Part coming-of-age story and part how-to-manual, the book is, above all, one of the most down-to-earth and least aggrandizing works of self-reflection you could hope to read. Evaristo’s guilelessness is refreshing, even unsettling…Invigoratingly disruptive as an artist, Evaristo is a bridge-builder as a human being.’

Times Literary Supplement

‘Manifesto combines the personal with the practical to powerful effect. The chapters run the gamut from Heritage, Childhood, Family, Origins, to The Self, Ambition, Transformation, Activism, and the book ends with the eponymous manifesto, in which Evaristo drives home her message to “pass on what we know to the next generation”, with the reminder that there is a manifesto in every one of us. Unconventional as it may be, the format works: the autobiographical parts of the book serve as vivid lessons about the power of change, growth and self-confidence.‘

Guardian, Book of the Day

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