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Reviews

Absorbing and clever . . . I fell in love with Mathilda
Cathy Rentzenbrink
A painfully exquisite book, by a unique talent that has single handedly rewritten the narrative of female shame
Camilla Pang
A book that simultaneously punches you in the gut and makes you snort with laughter. It's beautifully raw in its delivery. A glorious new talent has arrived
Emma Gannon
Tender, searingly honest and widely vulnerable. I couldn't stop reading
Angela Scanlon
Dark, nuanced and provocative, this is a sterling debut that fans of Caroline O'Donoghue, Holly Bourne and Emma Jane Unsworth are sure to love. Mathilda's chilling - but ultimately redemptive - story will stay with me.
Laura Jane Williams
What a Shame fizzes with energy, rage and love, burrowing deep into those experiences that define us at our core. Bergstrom writes with wit and wisdom, and Mathilda's voice is ever-incisive, fresh and compelling.
Jessica Moor
What A Shame weaves eternal themes of grief and heartbreak against a modern canvas that is clear and recognisable. There's a piercing sense of what happens when your tragedy becomes your anecdote, and your anecdote becomes tiring to the people around you. Full of heart, wit and feeling, Bergstrom is a new voice but sure to be an enduring one.
Caroline O'Donoghue
Truly captivating, blisteringly funny, so clever and perceptive and beautifully written. It made me want to voicenote all my friends immediately. I loved it!
Lauren Bravo
A wry and zeitgeisty look at grief, heartbreak and the fix-you industry, What a Shame asks whether we can ever expect closure from our worst and most secret pain and fear. A must-read for anyone who has ever felt defined by a break-up.
Harriet Walker
Raw and unexpected and weird and utterly brilliant
Otegha Uwagba
Raw, poignant, haunting (and hilarious!)... In Mathilda, Bergstrom has created a clear-eyed heroine for a new generation.
Sam Baker
Abigail Bergstrom's assured debut is a forensic excavation of the female psyche - on friendship, grief, and the secrets we keep to survive.
Laura Bailey
As soon as I finished the final page of What a Shame a deep ache set in. Written by one of the cleverest and boldest writers I've ever read, it is a powerful, beautiful, fascinating novel that will be read for years by any and all young women looking for a friend. I already miss Mathilda.
Scarlett Curtis
My favourite kind of book: the kind that you can't help but race through, leaves you immediately devastated when you finish it and envious of everyone who has yet to read it.
Dr Soph
A brilliant debut
Cariad Lloyd
Razor-sharp, compelling and darkly funny. An extraordinary novel that will stay with me for a long time.
Laura Kay