COMPULSIVELY READABLE: Wholly relatable three-dimensional characters, sharply observed social mores, propulsive storytelling and deep emotional resonance will make this novel one of the most talked about debuts of the year.
PERFECT FOR BOOK CLUBS: The novel raises many relevant issues, such as class inequality, the nature of “otherness,” the line between luck and merit, motherhood and the sacrifices family can demand.
HOT BUTTON ISSUE: Surrogacy is very much in the zeitgest, from Kim Kardashian West using a gestational carrier for her third child, to the $1 billion “rent a womb” business in India, where surrogates live together in dorms.
AUTHOR BACKSTORY AND INSPIRATION: Joanne Ramos was born in Manila before moving to the United States, where she grew up in a tight knit Filipino community. She was inspired to write this novel by listening to the stories of Filipina service workers in New York City, and realizing that while they came from the same place, they now inhabited two completely different worlds.
MAJOR ACQUISITION: Random House Publishing Group acquired The Farm with a tremendous amount of passion and a strong publishing plan. They are excellent partners on this book.
Longlisted for the 2019 Center for Fiction First Novel Prize
"Equal parts feminist dystopia and immigrant story, Ramos's debut novel couldn't be more relevant or timely." —O: The Oprah Magazine, "25 Books We Can’t Wait to Read in 2019"
"This topical, provocative debut anatomizes class, race and the American dream." —The Guardian (UK), "What You’ll Be Reading This Year"
"The Handmaid's Tale vibes are strong, but the 'holy sh*t this book is genius' vibes are stronger." —Cosmopolitan ("The 14 Best Books Coming Out in May 2019")
"In an ever-growing field of borderline-dystopian novels, this one hits home hard—a thrilling read about the myth of meritocracy." —Vulture, "Spring Books Preview: Fiction We Can't Wait to Read"
"Wow, Joanne Ramos has written the page-turner about immigrants chasing what's left of the American dream. . . . Truly unforgettable." —Gary Shteyngart, New York Times bestselling author of Super Sad True Love Story and Lake Success
"A highly original and provocative story about the impossible choices in so many women's lives. These characters will stay with me for a long time." —Karen Thompson Walker, New York Times bestselling author of The Age of Miracles and The Dreamers
"Ramos has written a firecracker of a novel, at once caustic and tender, page-turning and thought-provoking. This is a fierce indictment of the vampiric nature of modern capitalism, which never loses sight of the very human stories at its center. . . . Highly recommended." —Madeline Miller, #1 New York Times bestselling author of Circe
"Perhaps the most powerful element of this debut novel by Ramos . . . is its portrait of the world of Filipinas in New York. The three-page soliloquy of instructions for nannying delivered to Jane by her more experienced cousin is a work of art in itself. Excellent, both as a reproductive dystopian narrative and as a social novel about women and class." —Kirkus Reviews, starred review
"Compelling storytelling. . . . Ramos's debut is so engaging that the reader might not understand the depths she probes until the book is done. . . . Each character's complexity will give book groups plenty to discuss." —Booklist, starred review
"Transfixing. . . . Ramos particularly shines at her nuanced, emotional depictions of these women's interior struggles. A surefire hit with book groups, this striking novel will also appeal strongly to readers who like dystopian touches and ethically complicated narratives." —Publishers Weekly
"[A] thrilling debut about the new frontier of colonialism and the savagery of the American dream. . . . [The Farm] asks us to consider who gets to rise (from poverty, immigrant abjection), and who must serve that person's narrative. . . . The Farm is a great read." —The Guardian
"[The Farm] could not have come at a more pressing moment. . . . Given that The Farm explores women's agency over their bodies, it makes for particularly pertinent reading at a time when their reproductive rights are under threat—nowhere more conspicuously so than in America." —Vogue UK
"Using reproductive health as a means to explore dystopian themes is nothing new, but Ramos utilizes a different angle than Leni Zumas's Red Clocks or Margaret Atwood's The Handmaid's Tale. The true villain in The Farm is capitalism. . . . Subtle and at times thrilling, The Farm is a dystopia born of the world in which we live." —Paste
"The Farm . . . sets the stage for the examination of the American dream. . . . [The Farm's] all-too-real circumstances . . . leave readers wondering about the weight of responsibility mothers carry, about what it means to do the best for your children, and about the immense expectations placed on mothers." —Bustle
"The Farm is a smart, thoughtful novel about women, choices and the immigrant experience that asks the question: How far would you go for the American dream?" —PopSugar
"Traveling from the glitz of Manhattan to multiethnic, immigrant Queens and the isolation of the rural Hudson Valley, this is an exciting read about the politics of motherhood and female autonomy." —Library Journal
"The Farm terrifies with a simple question: How much of ourselves are we willing to sell? With characters so real they leap off the page, Ramos yanks the reader into a world of Haves and Have-Nots, and her question lingers long after we turn the final page." —Christina Dalcher, author of Vox
"The Farm is a completely plausible imagination of the future of pregnancy in a world of ever-greater inequality. What at first feels off-kilter is slowly ramped up to truly chilling, and it's done so subtly that we barely notice the change happening—it's not afraid to ask searching questions about who wins and who loses when women's bodies are commodified, and how freedom and agency for some come at a cost for others. It's sharply prescient, and terrifying, too." —Sophie Mackintosh, author of The Water Cure
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