Normal People – Book Review
Author: Sally Rooney
Genre: Contemporary, literary, award winner, ireland
My rating: ★★★☆☆
Release Date: Published 28th August, 2018 by Faber & Faber
Format: Paperback, 269 pages
“She shrugs. She knows a confrontation is coming now, and she can do nothing to stop it. It’s moving towards her already from every direction, and there’s no special move she can make, no evasive gesture, that can help her escape it.” – Sally Rooney
What did I think?
Normal People is full of conflicts. I loved and hated the main characters, Connell and Marianne. I found their relationship sweet and intimate yet cruel and frustrating. The story itself had a non-ending which, when I think about it, suited the book. I wasn’t upset about that—I saw it coming—but there is a part of me that wanted something to be ‘wrapped up’, you know?
I have to say it (scream it even): Rooney used NO quote marks. I bought the book and, when I opened it up, I felt pissed off. I pushed on and now that I’ve finished I’m in two minds (conflict again). Was the lack of quote marks actually perfect for this novel? Or was it still one of the most annoying qualities of this novel? Yeah, I think maybe second one. I had to stop at various points and work out what the flip was going on. Though I will admit that it wasn’t as difficult to read as I expected.
Personally, I remain a fan of quotes marks. But in a decade’s time if no one is using them and we’re all coping just fine I’ll come back to this post and admit how wrong I was. No problem.
The final thing I wanted to say about Normal People is that, despite everything – hiccups with dialogue, lack of plot offering satisfaction, and some nasty relationships and events (which could be difficult to read for those who’ve experienced bad relationships or trauma)—I floated through the book and came out the other end glad that I had read it.
For more info: Goodreads – Or your local Library