make the most of Lovereading rebus 30th anniversary
Search our site
Are You Sleeping by Kathleen Barber Read the opening extract of the brand new Kathleen Barber book before its publication on 27/12/2017

How to be Both by Ali Smith
  

How to be Both

Literary Fiction   All Shortlists and Winners   eBook Favourites   
Notify me
when in stock

As soon as this book is back in stock we will send you an email.

Download an extract Discuss on Facebook Discuss this book on our Literary Contemporary Facebook group Share this book

Sarah Broadhurst's view...

Winner of the Baileys Women's Prize for Fiction 2015.

Winner of the Costa Novel Award 2014.

Shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize 2014 this is an unusual and highly inventive novel. It is in fact two related novellas. In one we meet George, a 16 year old girl whose mother has just died and who’s trying to navigate her own grief whilst keeping her father away from a quick descent to alcoholism and protect her brother from his grief. This story shifts between the present and a time before her mother’s death so we discover a little more about their relationship. Crucially George’s mother introduces her to the work of an Italian renaissance artist, Francesco del Cossa, just before she dies and George plays truant to visit the National Gallery to see more of his work and work through her grief. The other story sees the ghost of Francesco summoned suddenly to the National Gallery in 21st Century London to be the familiar of a girl called George who’s becoming strangely obsessed with Francesco. The stories can and are designed to be read in either order and indeed copies were printed with the story order changed so some readers get it one way and others the other. Complicated but hugely rewarding and a fascinating way of absorbing a story.

The Costa Judges said Smith's novel was “Dazzlingly imagined and daringly inventive, it’s both resonant and moving.”

Winner of the Goldsmiths Prize 2014.

Shortlisted for The Man Booker Prize 2014.

One of our Books of the Year 2014.

If you like Ali Smith you might also like to read books by A L Kennedy, Jennifer Egan and Monica Ali.

Who is Sarah Broadhurst

The Good Book Guide logo The Good Book Guide Review. Ali Smith is without doubt one of Britain’s most adventurous novelists. Here she cleverly combines two stories that are five hundred years apart. In one, we meet George, a teenage girl full of angst and anger struggling to come to terms with the death of her mother and frustrated by her father’s inadequacies. On their last holiday together, George visited Italy with her mother and was introduced to the work of Francesco del Cossa, a renaissance artist about whom very little is known. The tale of Francesco makes up the other half of the book, with Smith imagining the young artist as a girl having to hide her sexuality to fulfil her ambition of becoming an artist in a man’s world. This extremely clever novel works on many levels and asks many questions about art, history, sexuality and surveillance. Do we exist if no one sees us?
~ Anthony Lafferty

The Good Pilot, Peter Woodhouse by Alexander Mccall Smith

One very lucky winner will receive a signed copy by Alexander McCall Smith of his latest novel, The Good Pilot, Peter Woodhouse. To have a chance of winning this fantastic prize, click the button below. Please note that this draw is open only for UK residents and is free to enter, multiple entries from the same email address will only be counted once.

The draw closes on 4 January 2018. The winner will be notified by 15th January 2018,

Good luck!

Enter prize draw Draw closes: 04/01/2018

Synopsis

How to be Both by Ali Smith

How to be both is the dazzling new novel by Ali Smith. It is longlisted for the Man Booker Prize 2014. Passionate, compassionate, vitally inventive and scrupulously playful, Ali Smith's novels are like nothing else. How to be both is a novel all about art's versatility. Borrowing from painting's fresco technique to make an original literary double-take, it's a fast-moving genre-bending conversation between forms, times, truths and fictions. There's a renaissance artist of the 1460s. There's the child of a child of the 1960s. Two tales of love and injustice twist into a singular yarn where time gets timeless, structural gets playful, knowing gets mysterious, fictional gets real - and all life's givens get given a second chance.

Reviews

'Smith can make anything happen, which is why she is one of our most exciting writers today.'

- Daily Telegraph

'She's a genius, genuinely modern in the heroic, glorious sense .'

- Alain de Botton

'I take my hat off to Ali Smith. Her writing lifts the soul .'

- Evening Standard

About the Author

Ali Smith

Ali Smith was born in Inverness in 1962. She is the author of Free Love and Other Stories, Like, Other Stories and Other Stories, Hotel World, The Whole Story and Other Stories, The Accidental, Girl Meets Boy, The First Person and Other Stories, There but for the, Artful, How to be both, and Public Library and other stories. Hotel World was shortlisted for the Booker Prize and the Orange Prize and The Accidental was shortlisted for the Man Booker and the Orange Prize. How to be both won the Baileys Prize, the Goldsmiths Prize and the Costa Novel Award and was shortlisted for the Man Booker and the Folio Prize. Ali Smith lives in Cambridge.

More books by this author
Author 'Like for Like' recommendations

Loading similar books...
Loading other formats...

Book Info

Publication date

28th August 2014

Author

Ali Smith

More books by Ali Smith
Author 'Like for Like'
    recommendations

Publisher

Hamish Hamilton Ltd an imprint of Penguin Books Ltd

Format

Hardback

Categories

Literary Fiction
All Shortlists and Winners
eBook Favourites


ISBN

9780241145210

Its jam packed with fantastic titles, informative descriptions & fantastic reviews and has a vast array of great features & competitions.

Linda Rollins

I recommend Lovereading because you get honest reviews on a whole range of genres-there's something for everyone. It's the only site I need.

Sian Spinney

At Lovereading there are fabulous books available in every genre, with great reviews to help you pick the right book for you.

Teresa O'Halloran

A well laid out site, I love the fact that is separates paranormal fiction from fantasy and horror, which other sites don't.

Jen Rainbow

Why I love @lovereadinguk? It's in the name - as dedicated lovers of reading, they are perfect matchmakers for helping me find my next read!

Catherine Jenkins

Lovereading - a community of people passionate about reading and sharing their views. An incomparable website for book lovers.

Helen Clark

It's the first site that I visit when deciding on the next set of books to buy. A particular treat is being able to download an extract.

Tessa Olson

I love that Lovereading handpicks very special debut reads.

Magda North

Lovereading4kids

Lovereading4schools