'Last year Jackie Kay published her critically acclaimed and moving memoir Red Dust Road... Fiere is a companion volume to her memoir. This is a bittersweet selection of verse. The hurt that springs from her troubled ancestry and uncertainty of identity, from failed love affairs and death, is handled capably and in language that twinkles. The reader is not depressed but comforted. In other words, this book itself will be a good friend to any reader... Kay negotiates the lines between her Scottish and Igbo sides as deftly as she does life and death, and happiness and sadness'
'The rhyming of English and Scots phrases gives the language a living edge, marking the dialect tradition with the duality that is characteristic of Kay's best writing... Kay's strength as a poet has always been her clear, plain style, and its fearless spoken poignancy. Here it is the vehicle for a touching poem about the late Edwin Morgan, as well as understated tributes to her adoptive parents... Fiere is a notably happy book of poems' --Daily Telegraph
'Jackie Kay depicts the landscapes of her identity - part Scottish, part Nigerian, and part mother, part lover - with a cleverly mutable eye and ear... Elegant love poems are infused with a sense that the best love cannot be travelled to or departed from' --Financial Times
'A wonderful collection and a benchmark for poetry in 2011' --Big Issue
'Kay's poems are notable not so much for their stylistic originality as for deftly drawing on the most personal of subject matters...without lapsing into solipsism or alienating the reader. Combined with a knack for capturing the rhythms of everyday talk and conjuring believable characters, these qualities have seen Kay able to communicate the highly personal in a relatable, wholly public fashion... Generous and optimistic as her outlook is, Kay rarely shies away from difficult choices... Fiere [is] a richly varied inquiry into the relationships hat define us' --Guardian
'A celebration of what it means to be close to someone... Fiere is a kind and compassionate collection, gently optimistic. It moves with familiar and familial ease between continents, between dialects, between generations... Fiere has a naked honesty, an unvarnished voice, and a strong one too. This is very much Kay's best collection.' --Independent
`Book of a Lifetime' --Independent
Jackie Kays new collection is a lyric counterpart to her memoir, Red Dust Road, the extraordinary story of the search for her Nigerian and Highland birth-parents; but it is also a moving book in its own right, and a deep enquiry into all forms of human friendship. Fiere Scots for companion, friend, equal is a vivid description of the many paths our lives take, and of how those journeys are made meaningful by our companions on the road: lovers, friends, parents, children, mentors as well as all the remarkable and chance acquaintances we would not otherwise have made. Written with Kays trademark wit and flair, and infused with both Scots and Igbo speech, it is also a fascinating account of the formation of a self-identity and the discovery of a tongue that best honours it. Musical and moving, funny and profound, Fiere is Jackie Kays most accomplished, assured and ambitious collection of poems to date.