Why Be Happy When You Could Be Normal?

By  Jeanette Winterson

About the Book  

 
In 1985 Jeanette Winterson’s first novel, Oranges Are Not the Only Fruit, was published. It was Jeanette’s version of the story of a terraced house in Accrington, an adopted child, and the thwarted giantess Mrs Winterson. It was a cover story, a painful past written over and repainted. It was a story of survival.
This book is that story’s silent twin. It is full of hurt and humour and a fierce love of life. It is about the pursuit of happiness, about lessons in love, the search for a mother and a journey into madness and out again. It is generous, honest and true.

What we think

“Winterson is a truly great writer and her searingly honest account of growing up, how we learn to deal with our own lives, with who we are and who we want to be is as dark as it is joyful. There are no words that can do this book justice. It simply has to be read.”

Also by Jeanette WintersonAuthor photo  Peter Peitsch peitschphoto com

Novels: Oranges Are Not the Only Fruit, The Passion, Sexing the Cherry, Written on the Body

On World Book Night

Lev, the protagonist of THE ROAD HOME, (my novel chosen to join the list of World Book Night titles), has read very few books in his arduous life as a sawmill worker in eastern Europe. When he comes to England, he’s given a copy of Hamlet by his friend Lydia, whose pedagogical instincts dictate that she work to ‘improve’ his mind. Hamlet is of course way too difficult for a man who has difficulty distinguishing ‘to be or not to be’ from ‘B & B’, but he struggles on with it and eventually finds some affinity with the anguished prince of Denmark. The reading plays a part in opening up and transforming Lev’s life. And this we know from voices around the world: books can transform lives. So let’s hope World Book Night will act as a kind of benign Ponzi scheme for the mighty word.

Rose Tremain

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