Originally Published: August 28, 2018
By: Sally Rooney
Before the now-hit television adaptation, Sally Rooney brought the characters of Connell and Marianne to life on the page in a stellar novel.
Connell is a star athlete at school whose mom cleans for the family of his classmate Marianne, who’s a shy outcast. They enter in a secret romance that continues when they both attend Trinity College Dublin. At TCD, Marianne breaks out of her shell, while Connell struggles in a post-secondary life.
Rooney writes a fantastic and realistic romance between Connell and Marianne. It’s not a fairytale story that you’ll look to have in your life, but it explores hardships, mental health and socioeconomic backgrounds.
It’s set in a point in time with an open ending, which reflects that all romance in life is just a chapter of who we are.
Final say: Normal is special. ★★★★☆