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The Brilliant & Forever

by Kevin MacNeil

Book Club Recommendations Books of the Month Books with reviews by our Reader Review Panel eBooks of the Month Historical Fiction Modern and Contemporary Fiction Relationship Stories

LoveReading View on The Brilliant & Forever

A delightfully unique and quirky novel that is able to provoke a sledgehammer of emotions into action. Three friends are due to take part in the annual Brilliant and Forever literary competition, and this is a competition with a difference. While the focus remains on the three friends, the competition entries are included, consequently we read stories within the story, which encourages thought processes to fly in new directions. ‘The Brilliant and Forever’ isn't a book to gobble down in one sitting, I sometimes re-read sentences just to let them soak into my soul. The writing is different, at times quite beautiful, while at others I sat and scratched my head as I puzzled and allowed thoughts to float just out of reach. Kevin MacNeil has created a striking, often amusing, sometimes menacing, and provocative tale. As soon as I had finished, I re-opened the book at random, sat back down and started to read again.

March 2016 Book of the Month.

Click here to listen to a podcast about this book with Kevin MacNeil


A 'Piece of Passion' from the publisher...

'A new novel by Kevin MacNeil is always something to get excited about, and I mean that as a reader as well as a publisher. When that novel is as marvellously invigorating as The Brilliant & Forever, well, let’s pop those champagne corks! Both a sharp satire on the culture industry and a true celebration of storytelling, it’s a book lover’s dream of a novel. It tells the story of three friends—two human, one alpaca—as they prepare to take part in their home island’s literary festival where either glory or infamy awaits. It’s funny (there’s lots of quotable lines.) It’s moving (you root for so many of the wonderful characters.) It’s hugely imaginative (Haiku-kery! Talking alpacas!) Oh, it’s unique. You’ve really never read a novel like it…' ~ Vikki Reilly, Birlinn Ltd

Liz Robinson

The Brilliant & Forever Synopsis

On an island like no other, populated by writers, the annual Brilliant & Forever Festival is a much anticipated event; its participants a story away from either glory or infamy. This year, three best friends - two human, one alpaca - are chosen to compete, so victory is not only about reward. This is a novel like no other; a wonderful, provocative tussle, a whip-cracking, energetic, laugh-out-loud satire on what we value in culture, and in our lives. And yet, written with exquisite warmth and empathy, it's also a moving exploration of integrity, friendship and belonging. It'll split your sides and break your heart.

The Brilliant & Forever Reader Reviews

In addition to our Lovereading expert opinion some of our Reader Review Panel were also lucky enough to read and review this title. You can click here to read the full reviews.

  • Linda Rollins - 'Men, women, children, alpacas - all live together on an island of writers. Funny, thought provoking, crazy and playful. The Brilliant & Forever is clever and intelligent and deserves to win prizes.'
  • Emily Curnow - 'a novel of comedy, human emotion, alpaca emotion and the unexpected. I laughed my way through this unusual book.'
  • Sally Doel - 'It is strange and bizarre and funny and sad and deep.  I really didn't know what to make of it at first, but decided to persevere - I'm so very glad I did...I would recommend this - don't be put off by the 'strangeness' of it - it's great!'
  • Helen Clark - 'I was hooked from page one.  This book has it all – rivalry, friendship, violence, empathy, bigotry and a huge helping of laugh-out-loud humour. Different and highly addictive read.'
  • Judith Griffith - 'An original, quirky story about 3 friends (2 people and an alpaca) and a literary festival like no other. But not for me, I'm afraid.'

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All versions of this book

ISBN: 9781846973376
Publication date: 03/03/2016
Publisher: Polygon An Imprint of Birlinn Limited an imprint of Birlinn General
Format: Paperback

Book Information

ISBN: 9781846973376
Publication date: 3rd March 2016
Author: Kevin MacNeil
Publisher: Polygon An Imprint of Birlinn Limited an imprint of Birlinn General
Format: Paperback
Pagination: 256 pages
Genres: Book Club Recommendations, Books of the Month, Reader Reviewed Books, eBook Favourites, Historical Fiction, Modern and Contemporary Fiction, Relationship Stories,
Collections: 40+ Quirky Novels - a little different and totally fabulous.,
Categories: Modern & contemporary fiction (post c 1945),

About Kevin MacNeil

Kevin MacNeil is an award-winning writer from the Outer Hebrides now living in London. He is a novelist, poet, editor and screenwriter. The Brilliant & Forever is his third novel.   Author photo  © Charlie Clift

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