The winner of the 2018 Man Booker Prize was at the heart of a literary debate with some readers and critics calling it too “challenging” and “impenetrable” but Anna Burns’s unique and brilliant novel set in an unnamed city during the Northern Ireland Troubles sparkles with its contemporary themes. Its experimental, engrossing prose and style – characters aren’t named and but are described through epithets – elevate rather than overwhelm the thought-provoking story about a young woman’s experiences with patriarchal oppression.