Manny and the Baby

by Varaidzo



Stylist Best New Fiction of 2024
A Bookseller‘One to Watch’

Manny and the Baby stood out for me from the first few lines. The beautifully balanced prose, the wonderful story, and sumptuous detail are constructed with poetic precision and held my attention right until the very end.’ Jacqueline Crooks, author of Fire Rush

‘An incredibly special writer, thoughtful and energetic, occasionally savage, wise beyond her years, with an eye and an ear for syntax that is masterful ... Varaidzo is the future, and Manny and the Baby is a book for the ages.’ Nikesh Shukla

Included in NetGalley’s 2024 Hot List

London, 1936. Two sisters are ready to take the city and the world by storm.

Bath, 2012. Two young Black men are figuring out who they are, and who they want to become.

Manny is forthright, intellectual, and determined to make her mark on the London literary scene. Her younger sister Rita, the Baby, just wants to dance. In the smoky clubs that pulsate underneath Soho’s vibrant streets, Rita finds herself drawn into a new world of Black ambition, along with the masterful mimic and trumpeter, Ezekiel Brown, from Jamaica. As tensions rise and the shadow of fascism and war snaps at their heels, the two sisters are faced with choices that will alter their lives forever.

Itai has fled London to his late father’s flat in Bath. Listening to cassette tapes his father made, he feels both drawn in and shut out of his former life — who is Rita? Why did his father record her life story? And where can he find her now, to return the tapes? Meanwhile, his developing friendship with Josh, a young athlete who moonlights as a dealer to fund his training for the next Olympics, is on unsteady ground, as Josh has been sent by his bosses to find out what the hell Itai is doing in Bath.

Manny and the Baby is a character-driven debut novel, full of heart, about what it means to be Black and British, now and in the past.

Format: Paperback
Page Count: 272 Pages
Imprint: Scribe
Published: June 2024
ISBN: 9781761381263

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