Merton Big Read 2024

Brooklyn by Colm Tóibín: A story for our times

Over the year we will be giving away a signed copy of Long Island each month. This month’s draw will take place on Fri 28 June.

Click here for your chance to win a signed copy of Long Island.

This year’s Merton Big Read title is the award winning Brooklyn by the Irish Laureate for Fiction, Colm Tóibín. The Merton Big Read is a borough-wide reading group, run in partnership with Merton Libraries and funded by Arts Council England. It’s through reading and sharing stories that we can all understand our world, and each other, better, so we hope to get as many people as possible reading Brooklyn.

Set in 1950s Ireland and America, Brooklyn is a stunning story of love, loss and one woman’s terrible choice between duty and personal freedom. Its universal themes speak across generations and communities to anyone who has had to leave their homes to start a new life. Winner of the 2009 Costa Novel Award, Brooklyn quickly became an international bestseller, garnering huge critical acclaim. The film adaptation, starring Saoirse Ronan, was nominated for three Oscars.

Five hundred copies of the book will be available through libraries and community groups across Merton, so be sure to pick up one up and get reading. And when you’re done, please pass it on – share your copy with friends, family, neighbours – we want the whole community to get involved!

The Big Read book club will run throughout 2024 with book clubs, film screenings and an in-person event with Colm Tóibín planned for later in the year.

Long Island – Tóibín’s much-anticipated sequel to Brooklyn – was recently published to rave reviews including being chosen for Oprah Winfrey’s book club. And you can win a sign ed copy by entering our prize draw. Sign up here!