Third time’s a charm for Sally Rooney


By Sally Rooney

Faber & Faber €13.99

SALLY Rooney’s third novel is a triumph. There, I’ve said it. I didn’t really understand the hype of Normal People; I thought it was fine, showed a lot of potential, heralded an exciting new Irish writer to watch. Then along came the TV adaptation and I finally got it.

Beautiful World, Where are You is such an accomplished, confident piece of fiction that it couldn’t have come about without its predecessors, Conversations with Friends and Normal People. While it, like those that came before it, puts its main focus on relationships and there’s not a huge amount in the way of plot, it is interspersed with deep (and sometimes not so deep) philosophical exchanges between the two main characters, Eileen and Alice.

Best friends since college, they are now in their late twenties and living somewhat different lives. Alice is a bestselling author grappling with fame, Eileen is an editor of a literary magazine barely scraping a living to get by and wondering what she’s doing with her life.

Read the full review in this week's edition of The Tuam Herald, on sale in shops and online