Most people aspire to be 'normal' and Marianne Sheridan and Connell Waldron are no exception. Hailing from County Sligo, they come from the same west Ireland town, albeit from different sides of the track: Marianne's family are wealthy and employ Connell's mum as their cleaner. Spanning from their last year at high school through to the completion of their studies at Trinity College Dublin, this is the poignant account of their 'on-again, off-again' relationship as they wrestle with their metamorphosis into adulthood.
With its astute social observations and psychological insights, this is a sensitively written love story illuminating the universal need for connection and the desire to be truly known.
Most of the group responded to this book with enthusiasm. We enjoyed the style of writing (no one complained about the lack of quotation marks) and were moved by the love story. Although most of us are quite ancient, we were not disturbed by the sexuality of the young people. The picture of society - from the school in country town to Trinity University - was brilliantly done.
Quite a controversial book within the group. Probably one of our most lively discussions! While we all gave it four stars as found the writing excellent, our reactions ranged from being reminded of the difficulties of young love and university days, to wanting to throw the book across the room. One member's review "If you want to read a book that is really uncomfortable and far too real, this is the book for you".
This book was met with a variety of reactions from members. Some people disliked the lack of punctuation but most felt it dealt with the difficulties many young people have around the area of communication, well.
Such was the book's popularity that the majority of the group had read it before we were issued it! One person was disappointed - perhaps because the rest of us had talked it up so much.
The group really enjoyed this insightful look into modern young adult minds. Their issues and difficulties were complex. It was good to find peace and independence beginning to emerge towards the end of the book.
Group generally enjoyed. Some found repetitive. We are interested in watching the Netflix series.
Only one of our group liked the book ( we are all aged 70-85). Not a story appreciated by our generation. The one who liked it looked beyond the language and sexual content to the reality of the of the lives of today's teenagers and the challenges they face - so different from ours. A brilliant young author - well written.
A brilliant read in spite of so many misgivings at first. Led to profound discussion. Brilliant book notes.
Interesting for our age group to read from a young person's perspective.
Everyone read the book and most of us enjoyed it. It is character rather than story driven and takes a bit to get used to the interesting writing style This felt like a real glimpse into the lives of 2 young people in Ireland. The issues and circumstances seem universal and lead to a lot of discussions. The characters are compelling. We were interested in them and their journey.