Normal People: A Novel
Paperback – February 18, 2020
“A stunning novel about the transformative power of relationships” (People) from the author of Conversations with Friends, “a master of the literary page-turner” (J. Courtney Sullivan).
NAMED ONE OF ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY’S TEN BEST NOVELS OF THE DECADE • NAMED ONE OF THE TEN BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY Entertainment Weekly • People • The New York Public Library • Slate • Harvard Crimson AND ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY Dwight Garner, The New York Times • The New York TImes Book Review • O: The Oprah Magazine • Time • NPR • The Washington Post • Vogue • Esquire • Glamour • Elle • Marie Claire • Vox • The Paris Review • Good Housekeeping • Town & Country • Kirkus Reviews • BookPage • BookRiot
“Absolutely engrossing and surprisingly heartbreaking with more depth, subtlety, and insight than any one novel deserves.”—Stephanie Danler
Connell and Marianne grew up in the same small town, but the similarities end there. At school, Connell is popular and well liked, while Marianne is a loner. But when the two strike up a conversation—awkward but electrifying—something life changing begins.
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 at university, Marianne and Connell circle one another, straying toward other people and possibilities but always magnetically, irresistibly drawn back together. And 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.
Normal People is the story of mutual fascination, friendship and love. It takes us from that first conversation to the years beyond, in the company of two people who try to stay apart but find that they can’t.
Praise for Normal People
“[A] novel that demands to be read compulsively, in one sitting.”—The Washington Post
“Arguably the buzziest novel of the season, Sally Rooney’s elegant sophomore effort . . . is a worthy successor to Conversations with Friends. Here, again, she unflinchingly explores class dynamics and young love with wit and nuance.”—The Wall Street Journal
“[Rooney] has been hailed as the first great millennial novelist for her stories of love and late capitalism. . . . [She writes] some of the best dialogue I’ve read.”—The New Yorker
About the Author
Sally Rooney was born in the west of Ireland in 1991. Her work has appeared in The New Yorker, The New York Times, Granta and The London Review of Books. Winner of the Sunday Times Young Writer of the Year Award, she is the author of Conversations with Friends. In 2019, she was named to the inaugural Time 100 Next list.