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Normal people
2019
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Summary

THE NUMBER ONE SUNDAY TIMES BESTSELLER

WINNER OF THE COSTA NOVEL AWARD 2018
WINNER OF THE SPECSAVERS NATIONAL BOOKS AWARD 2018 (International Author)
LONGLISTED FOR THE MAN BOOKER PRIZE 2018

'The best novel published this year.' The Times

Connell and Marianne grow up in the same small town in rural Ireland. The similarities end there; they are from very different worlds. When they both earn places at Trinity College in Dublin, a connection that has grown between them lasts long into the following years.

This is an exquisite love story about how a person can change another person's life - a simple yet profound realisation that unfolds beautifully over the course of the novel. It tells us how difficult it is to talk about how we feel and it tells us - blazingly - about cycles of domination, legitimacy and privilege. Alternating menace with overwhelming tenderness, Sally Rooney's second novel breathes fiction with new life.

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Booklist Review
When Connell picks his mom up from her job as his classmate Marianne's family's housekeeper, he and Marianne discover an unusual connection. Though Connell is a well-liked athlete and Marianne is seen as an antisocial outsider, they're both known as their high school's brightest: their first, and lasting, bond. The secrecy of their relationship creates a shelter in which to explore their intense chemistry, both intellectual and sexual, before Connell blithely betrays Marianne, and they both leave their small town for Dublin's Trinity College. Advancing months or minutes at a time along the next four years, chapters ripple through the subsequent reunions and rifts of their college years. Connell knows that Marianne is fragile, but it's a long time before he fully understands why and that he is, too. Long-listed for the 2018 Man Booker Prize, this superb book more than lives up to the high expectations set for it by Rooney's lauded first novel, Conversations with Friends (2017). Showcasing Rooney's focus and ability in building character relationships that are as subtle and infinite as real-life ones, and her perceptive portrayal of class, Normal People gets at the hard work of becoming a person and the near impossibility of knowing if a first love is a true one.--Annie Bostrom Copyright 2010 Booklist
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