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The Bonobo’s Dream

2017 - Shortlisted


Judges’ comments

In a world rendered comfortable again after an off-page apocalypse, a couple's smooth surface life is disrupted over the course of a family dinner party. This apparently blissful scenario is admirably upended by two of the night's guests: the couple's eldest daughter, an entertainment gladiator with anger management issues, and her new partner, the scientific result of a cocktail of bonobo, gorilla and human DNA. The resulting disruption throws the party into a more dangerous landscape. 

The Bonobo's Dream is a speculative novella of unusual wit and shrewdness. It possesses a sly surrealism that never once threatens to outstay its welcome. In this original and engaging work, Mulready brings a sharp, playful wit to her considerations of consumerism, the demands of televised sport and the disastrously widening cracks in our otherwise controlled lives.