Conversations With Friends by Sally Rooney Book Review

Book Description (via Goodreads): Frances is twenty-one years old, cool-headed and observant. A student in Dublin and an aspiring writer, at night she performs spoken word with her best friend Bobbi, who used to be her girlfriend. When they are interviewed and then befriended by Melissa, a well-known journalist who is married to Nick, an actor, they enter a world of beautiful houses, raucous dinner parties and holidays in Provence, beginning a complex ménage-à-quatre. But when Frances and Nick get unexpectedly closer, the sharply witty and emotion-averse Frances is forced to honestly confront her own vulnerabilities for the first time.

I have given Conversations With Friends by Sally Rooney four out of five stars ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

I’m finding it quite difficult to put into words just how much I truly enjoyed this book, so here goes nothing…

This book is incredibly, compelling and an intellectual debut novel! In this book we follow four individuals: Frances, Bobbi, Nick and Melissa. Told from the narration of Frances, we embark on a journey learning about the different relationships shared amongst these four characters in a way that I’ve never read before. Sally Rooney’s style of writing is extraordinary to me, she doesn’t use any speech marks which I thought was going to be hard to pick up when her characters are talking but after a few pages I started to catch on (I read Normal People prior to reading Conversations With Friends which also has no speech marks, so I believe it is simply just the writing style that Rooney uses).

I’m so fascinated by the character and relationship studies which are strongly focused on in this book. Rooney’s characters are very authentic and flawed, she knows how to bring her characters to life especially with the personality traits and struggles that they seem to go through in this book, they almost feel like people who I’ve known in my life time. Reading about someone trying to understand themselves and their close friends and family around them, hit me in a completely different way. This is the first book which I’ve read that includes polyamorous relationships and I found that to be really interesting and eye-opening.

The way Sally Rooney depicts romance is utterly beautiful, it’s raw and again, realistic. Following Frances was very interesting, reading about her feelings and the experiences she goes through in this story was heartbreaking most of the time. However, I didn’t necessarily find the characters in this book to be likeable as such, and I normally tend to need a connection with at least one character to really delve into a book, but I believe due to way Rooney tells her stories that was enough for me to be drawn into this book.

Rooney features real topics such as mental health and endometriosis which I appreciated, especially endometriosis as I haven’t seen that discussed and made aware in any books that I’ve read prior to Conversations With Friends.

I’m so in love with Sally Rooney and her honest writing, I can’t wait for her new novel to come out in September!

Have you read Conversations With Friends by Sally Rooney yet? If so, what did you think? Let me know in the comments below.

Happy reading,

Claire 📚

One of Us Is Next by Karen M. McManus Book Review

Book Description (via Goodreads):

It is a year after the action of One of Us Is Lying, and someone has started playing a game of Truth or Dare.

But this is no ordinary Truth or Dare. This game is lethal. Choosing the truth may reveal your darkest secrets, accepting the dare could be dangerous, even deadly.

The teenagers of Bayview must work together once again to find the culprit, before it’s too late . . .

Continue reading

The Central Park Five: The Untold Story Behind One of New York City’s Most Infamous Crimes by Sarah Burns Book Review

Book Description: The case of the Central Park Five is being revisited with a new acclaimed Netflix limited series on the subject, When They See Us, directed by Ava DuVernay. This is the only book that is going to tell you all you need to know about one of the most infamous criminal cases in American history. A trial that, thirty years on, still bears a striking, and unsettling, resemblance to our current political climate in the era of President Donald Trump.
In April 1989, a white woman who came to be known as the ‘Central Park jogger’ was brutally raped and severely beaten, her body left crumpled in a ravine. Amid the staggering torrent of media coverage and public outcry that ensued, exposing the deep-seated race and class divisions in New York City at the time, five teenagers were quickly apprehended – four black and one Hispanic. All five confessed, were tried and convicted as adults despite no evidence linking them to the victim.
Over a decade later, when DNA tests connected serial rapist Matias Reyes to the crime, the government, law enforcement, social institutions and media of New York were exposed as having undermined the individuals they were designed to protect.
In The Central Park Five, Sarah Burns, who has worked closely with the young men to uncover and document the truth, recounts the ins and outs of this historic case for the first time since their convictions were overturned, telling, at last, the full story of one of America’s most legendary miscarriages of justice.
Continue reading

Normal People by Sally Rooney Book Review

Book Description (via Goodreads): Connell and Marianne grow up in the same small town in rural Ireland. The similarities end there; they are from very different worlds. When they both earn places at Trinity College in Dublin, a connection that has grown between them lasts long into the following years. This is an exquisite love story about how a person can change another person’s life – a simple yet profound realisation that unfolds beautifully over the course of the novel. It tells us how difficult it is to talk about how we feel and it tells us – blazingly – about cycles of domination, legitimacy and privilege. Alternating menace with overwhelming tenderness, Sally Rooney’s second novel breathes fiction with new life.
Continue reading