Harvesting by Lisa Harding is the November Irish Times Book Club choice!
First published last year to great acclaim from the media and readers, Harvesting was shortlisted for the Kerry Group Irish Novel of the Year 2018 and the Newcomer of the Year at the Bord Gáis Energy Irish Book Awards 2017, and went on to win the Kate O’Brien Award 2018.
Sarah Gilmartin reviewed it for The Irish Times, praising Harding “for writing about such an important and under-reported topic” and the book for being “… a character-driven and highly dramatic novel…vivid and credible”... The Sunday Independent declared: “This is one of the most gut-wrenching, shiver-inducing pieces of fiction I have ever read…each line is gripping: mind and body are hooked into a world you don’t want to know exists, but which thrives under our very noses… electrifying.”
Dan Bolger, who commissioned and edited the novel, said: “Lisa Harding’s Harvesting landed on my desk along with a load of recommendations. Instantly, we were captivated by this remarkable book – not just for the accomplishment of the prose, which is considerable, and not just for its unforgettable characters, Sammy and Nico, but also for how weighty, how vital it felt. A lot of publishers would be wary of publishing a book about such dark subject matter, but we felt this book had to be published.
“It’s rare to hold a submission in your hands and know on a cellular level that it has to be done, that it can’t not be done. But that’s what happened here. Lisa was an absolute joy to work with – she is sound, boundlessly energetic, and her talent is obvious. She handles a profoundly difficult issue with absolute care and multitudes of heart, and has, in Harvesting, produced one hell of a great read.”
Sammy is a spiky, quick-witted and sharp teenager living in Dublin; Nico is a warm and conscientious girl from Moldova. When they are thrown together in a Dublin brothel in a horrific twist of fate, a peculiar and important bond is formed . . .
This is a novel about a flourishing but hidden world, thinly concealed beneath a veneer of normality. It’s about the failings of polite society, the cruelty that can exist in apparently homely surroundings, the bluster of youth and the often appalling weakness of adults.
Harvesting is heartbreaking and funny, gritty, raw and breathtakingly beautiful, where redemption is found in friendship and unexpected acts of kindness.