Normal People by Sally Rooney

Cori says:

normal pep

“This coming of age story set in Ireland is about an on and off again couple, Marianne and Connell, starting with high school and moving through their university years.  On one level, this could be solely seen as the “will they or won’t they” story of their relationship.  Even though filled with complications and miscommunications, they continually return to each other as either friends or lovers. On a deeper level, this story explores pretensions and power differentials based on wealth and class differences. With constantly shifting sands, they navigate peer pressure and power dynamics while trying to manage their insecurities and find the courage to live their dreams and ideals.”

Soon to be a Hulu original in 2020, get ahead of the crowd and read this before the show starts!

From Penguin Random House:

At school Connell and Marianne pretend not to know each other. He’s popular and well-adjusted, star of the school football team, while she is lonely, proud, and intensely private. But when Connell comes to pick his mother up from her job at Marianne’s house, a strange and indelible connection grows between the two teenagers—one they are determined to conceal.

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.

Sally Rooney brings her brilliant psychological acuity and perfectly spare prose to a story that explores the subtleties of class, the electricity of first love, and the complex entanglements of family and friendship.