Wild, queer and unstoppably inventive . . . McCarthy Woolf possesses a rare, uncanny power in prose and lyric, staging a fantastic line-up of dolls with their personal baggage and societal wounds. This book is poignantly absurd and unsentimentally tender - a one-off.
An immersive, playful, multi-voiced time-travelling story . . . Both McCarthy Woolf's father and mine arrived in England from Jamaica on the same boat. This book extends our shared journey through the history of our lineages in ways that are beautiful, surprising, painful and yes, humorous. McCarthy Woolf has written a book that is truly worthy of the term "novel".
If you read one novel this year let it be Top Doll. This is innovative, exquisitely crafted storytelling at its finest.
An astonishing combination of depth, compassion and beauty. A constant series of delicious surprises.
Extraordinarily inventive, witty, moving and profound.
By turns poetic, subversive and intensely absorbing, Top Doll is doing something unique and wildly imaginative within the form and structures of the novel. With Top Doll, Mccarthy Woolf firmly establishes herself as one of the most intellectually daring writers of our generation.
Karen McCarthy Woolf has invented a new species of novel - part prose, part poem, and part memoir. That it's almost all spoken by dolls is astonishing, but she's given each voice her full spectrum of powers as a poet; their voices are acerbic, hilarious, and deliciously alive! Every line is laced with wit, critiquing society and inequality. Top Doll is a virtuoso wonder.
A mad, mad, beautiful fiction début . . . The new perspective it gives on the human "flesh" world is its real genius. Poetic, peculiar, prophetic and revelatory - a work of art.
Top Doll is a strange picaresque, with its main players all trapped in one New York apartment . . . I've not read anything quite like it.
Undoubtedly smart, relentlessly irreverent and wryly humorous . . . pitch perfect