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Summary

Frances is a 21-year-old college student in Dublin; she performs at spoken word events with her best friend and ex-lover, Bobbi. When they are profiled by journalist Melissa, they enter an orbit of beautiful houses and raucous dinner parties. Initially unimpressed, Frances begins an affair with Nick, Melissa's husband, which gives way to an unexpected intimacy. Desperate to reconcile her desires and vulnerabilities of her body, Frances's intellectual certainties begin to yield to something new: a disorienting way of living from moment to moment.

©2017 Sally Rooney (P)2017 W.F. Howes Ltd

Critic reviews

"Forensically smart and pin-sharp witty, this is a book to cherish and a writer to fall in love with." (Thomas Morris, author of We Don't Know What We're Doing)

What members say

Average customer ratings

Overall

  • 4 out of 5 stars
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    90
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    36
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    12

Performance

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    15
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Story

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Best character development I have read in a long time

An honest, modern depiction of how non-binary relationships are. Couldn’t stop listening and will have a real hole in my audio-life where these characters were!

The narration is so melodically Irish and a perfect cast for Frances’ voice I think.

Will read again, and probably something different away each time.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

well written

I liked it a lot, the story is good, the characters are peculiar and young but believable, and the thing I liked most was the beautiful voice of the narrator.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Easy read; hard to swallow.

I really enjoyed this book despite finding almost every character irritating. I guess hats part of the point; none of them (or us) are supposed to be perfect. The political diatribe is a bit much to take though. Having said that, it reminded me of how I felt in my early twenties attending university - like I had to have strong opinions on everything. I think Rooney captures how complicated relationships can be and how hard it is to really know who you are.

4 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars

Jilly Cooper working for Mills and Boon

I bought this as 'Single, Carefree Mellow' was intelligent and funny and this book appeared under the 'customers also bought' section in the recommendations. This book is neither. The heroine is a 21 year old virgin who has an affair with a man who is tall, wealthy (but is a marxist), devastatingly handsome, saintly and loves babies! His wife is conveniently a bitch (not that he would think of her like that) who had had several affairs (he hasn't had any of course) and who works away from home.
I gave up at that point as by continuing I might regurgitate breakfast. I really hope this is supposed to be satire, but suspect not.

9 of 17 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Relatable taboos

Keeps you glued to the story, Sally Rooney describes taboo topics in such a relatable manner, I wasn't even aware certain feelings could get described with words so accurately. I didn't like it that the narrator put on a different voice to mimic a man's voice, it was distracting. The Irish accent however is a bliss to listen to.

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

interesting take on mental health/infidelity!

overall not a bad story. written from the point of Francis, and told about her immediate friendship's and family life and her interactions with them. leading into a story of infidelity, naively going through life, illnesses and touching on some self-harm.
I listened to this in 2 days, which is pretty unheard of for me. it was engaging and kept me hooked, but I wasn't blown away by any of it. I was slightly annoyed at Francis quite a lot of the time. there are also several areas touched upon and not explored heavily- the father for example, the mother is an almost bit part character.
I think this is a step up from a chick lit, but not a huge step, and as such isn't something I would rush to read anymore of by this author, not would I recommend it. but I can see that it fits the market quite well for a lot of people.
I have thought more about this and my review.... I'm not even sure I believe my own words of "overall not bad" it's more of a nothing rambling story or a petulent spoilt person that should know better by her age.

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

I couldn't tell you what the book was about.

This was a good book to listen to but the story was not all that. It was just words put together. I was disappointed with the ending as well. All in all this is a book you can get yourself lost in but dont expect to remember a word of it when you finish.

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Compelling portrait of a woman, unaware

Completely absorbed by this modern tale of a socially, emotionally naive woman exploited by people masquerading as friends. Would have preferred a more satisfying ending. Exceptional writing.

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars

Try hard drivel

I can’t believe this book got such good reviews! It was painful to listen to.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Excellently written story

Highly recommend to anyone looking for a good real life sounding love dynamic.... .. .

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  • Anders
  • 17-09-17

Like a Japanese restaurant without sushi.

A story keeping you alert to the end. Unusual good dialogue. So many writers fails there! I loved that it stuck to one singular theme, without to much surroundings, descriptions or flashing topics semi-relevant to the core of the story.