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Birnam Wood by Eleanor Catton – UK release date

March 2, 2023 @ 8:00 am - April 2, 2023 @ 5:00 pm

birnam wood eleanor catton

Booker Prize-winning author Eleanor Catton’s eagerly awaited new novel, Birnam Wood, will be published in the UK on 2 March.

Catton, whose second novel The Luminaries won the 2013 Booker Prize – making her the youngest author ever to win the prize (at age 28) and only the second New Zealander – brings us a compulsive psychological thriller described as “Shakespearean in its wit, drama and immersion in character” and “a satirical examination of our contemporary political moment, the novel lays bare the human impulse to ensure our own survival.

You can join Catton on tour in the UK in March and April – see details here.


Birnam Wood is electric: a spectacular book. It has the pace and bite of a thriller. It has an iron-willed morality. It feels like the product of astonishing skill, and formidable love. It’s literally, physically breathtaking -Katherine Rundell

Birnam Wood is terrific. As a multilayered, character-driven thriller, it’s as good as it gets. Ruth Rendell would have loved it. A beautifully textured work- what a treat -Stephen King

Phenomenal and utterly gripping, ​Birnam Wood has the sense of a literary writer setting herself free and having a bit of fun. It’s fantastic. I loved it. -Jessie Burton

This is an urgent, compelling read, bleak but deeply moving and humanly credible. Eleanor Catton offers an unsparing analysis of the various deadly self-delusions and corruptions that are generated by our global denial of the planet’s crisis – but also by our naive, confused yearnings to be numbered among the righteous. It is a book of real moral depth -Rowan Williams

About the book:

Birnam Wood is on the move…

Five years ago, Mira Bunting founded a guerrilla gardening group: Birnam Wood. An undeclared, unregulated, sometimes-criminal, sometimes-philanthropic gathering of friends, this activist collective plants crops wherever no one will notice, on the sides of roads, in forgotten parks, and neglected backyards. For years, the group has struggled to break even. Then Mira stumbles on an answer, a way to finally set the group up for the long term: a landslide has closed the Korowai Pass, cutting off the town of Thorndike.

Natural disaster has created an opportunity, a sizable farm seemingly abandoned. But Mira is not the only one interested in Thorndike. Robert Lemoine, the enigmatic American billionaire, has snatched it up to build his end-times bunker – or so he tells Mira when he catches her on the property. Intrigued by Mira, Birnam Wood, and their entrepreneurial spirit, he suggests they work this land. But can they trust him? And, as their ideals and ideologies are tested, can they trust each other?


March 2, 2023 @ 8:00 am
April 2, 2023 @ 5:00 pm
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