My thoughts…

This book had been on my To Be Read pile for a very long time. The release of the TV series hurried me along a bit as I was keen to finish it and then start watching. However it was still a very slow read and I think for me, it was the lack of speech marks. That being said, I think I understand why and quite possibly the book wouldn’t have been the same had they been there. It just meant that at times, there was some working out to do, and a little re-reading here and there. But hey, you can’t always fully concentrate and I did read this in the midst of a Global Pandemic…

Here are some interesting facts that may help you understand the book. Sally Rooney was a former European debating champion. Her skills and immense talent in this shine through really well in the book, as she handles the conversations back and forth between the main characters with style and an element of ‘quick fire’ to them. With this in mind, it’s clear that Sally Rooney has also perfected the talent of leaving things left unsaid – and silence – it’s incredibly hard to convey silence in a book but she does it really well. That also comes through in the TV Series.

In a very short but sweet summary, this book is about two ordinary people falling in love. But at the same time, it’s so much more than that. It will frustrate you, of that I’m sure. The ending in particular finished me off after much backwards and forwards – however like I said, it’s about two ordinary people falling in love. And it’s not a fairytale…

About the book…

At school Connell and Marianne pretend not to know each other. He’s popular and well-adjusted, star of the school soccer team while she is lonely, proud, and intensely private. But when Connell comes to pick his mother up from her housekeeping job at Marianne’s house, a strange and indelible connection grows between the two teenagers – one they are determined to conceal.

A year later, they’re both studying at Trinity College in Dublin. Marianne has found her feet in a new social world while Connell hangs at the sidelines, shy and uncertain. Throughout their years in college, Marianne and Connell circle one another, straying toward other people and possibilities but always magnetically, irresistibly drawn back together. Then, as she veers into self-destruction and he begins to search for meaning elsewhere, each must confront how far they are willing to go to save the other.

Sally Rooney brings her brilliant psychological acuity and perfectly spare prose to a story that explores the subtleties of class, the electricity of first love, and the complex entanglements of family and friendship.

Genre: Contemporary Fiction
Publication: 2018

About the author…

Born in the west of Ireland, Sally Rooney’s work has appeared in publications including The New Yorker, The New York Times, Granta and The London Review of Books. In 2017 she was the winner of the Sunday Times Young Writer of the Year Award. She is the author of Conversations with Friends and Normal People which was longlisted for the 2018 Man Booker Prize.




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