I am a total sucker for a good coming of age story – some of my all time favorite books fall into this category (Fangirl, Ready Player One, and Anna and the French Kiss to name a few). When the April 2019 Book of the Month selections came out, it was an easy choice for me to pick up Normal People as my monthly choice. Unfortunately, this book turned out to be a total slog that I only finished because I hate to not finish books.
At school Connell and Marianne pretend not to know each other. He’s popular and well-adjusted, star of the school soccer team while she is lonely, proud, and intensely private. But when Connell comes to pick his mother up from her housekeeping 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 in college, Marianne and Connell circle one another, straying toward other people and possibilities but always magnetically, irresistibly drawn back together. Then, 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.