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Why be Happy When You Could be Normal? by Jeanette Winterson
  

Why be Happy When You Could be Normal?

Biography / Autobiography   eBook Favourites   eBook Favourites   

RRP £14.99

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Featured on The Book Show on Sky Arts on 15 December 2011.

Funny, acute, fierce and celebratory, this is a tough-minded search for belonging, for love, an identity, a home, and a mother.

If you like Jeanette Winterson you might also like to read books by Angela Carter, Hilary Mantel and Julie Myerson.

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Synopsis

Why be Happy When You Could be Normal? by Jeanette Winterson

Featured on The Book Show on Sky Arts on 15 December 2011.

Jeanette Winterson:

In 1985 Jeanette Winterson's first novel, Oranges Are Not the Only Fruit , was published. It tells the story of a young girl adopted by Pentecostal parents. The girl is supposed to grow up and be a missionary. Instead she falls in love with a woman. Disaster. Written when Jeanette was only twenty-five, her novel went on to win the Whitbread First Novel award, become an international bestseller and inspire an award-winning BBC television adaptation. Oranges was semi-autobiographical. Mrs Winterson, a thwarted giantess, loomed over that novel and its author's life. When Jeanette finally left her home, at sixteen, because she was in love with a woman, Mrs Winterson asked her: why be happy when you could be normal? This book is the story of a life's work to find happiness. It is a book full of stories: about a girl locked out of her home, sitting on the doorstep all night; about a tyrant in place of a mother, who has two sets of false teeth and a revolver in the duster drawer, waiting for Armageddon; about growing up in an northern industrial town now changed beyond recognition, part of a community now vanished; and, about the Universe as a Cosmic Dustbin. It is the story of how the painful past Jeanette Winterson thought she had written over and repainted returned to haunt her later life, and sent her on a journey into madness and out again, in search of her real mother. It is also a book about other people's stories, showing how fiction and poetry can form a string of guiding lights, a life-raft which supports us when we are sinking.

Reviews

Unforgettable... It's the best book I have ever read about the cost of growing up. -- Daisy Goodwin Sunday Times A searingly felt and expressed autobiography...Funny and profoundly hopeful - a tale of survival -- Kate Hamer Metro The prose is breathtaking: witty, biblical, chatty and vigorous all at once. She defines the pursuit of happiness not as being content (which is fleeting and a bit bovine ), but as the impulse to swim upstream , the search for a meaningful life. This breathless, powerful book is that search -- Emily Strokes Financial Times Vivid, unpredictable, and sometimes mind-rattling memoir... This book... which had been funny enough to make me laugh out loud more times than is advisable on the No 12 bus - turns into something raw and unnerving. -- Julie Myerson The Observer This is certainly the most moving book of Winterson's I have ever read... but it wriggles with humour... At one point I was crying so much I had tears in my ears. There is much here that is impressive, but what I find most unusual about it is the way it deepens one's sympathy, for everyone involved. -- Zoe Williams The Guardian


About the Author

Jeanette Winterson OBE is the author of ten novels, including Oranges are not the Only Fruit, The Passion and Sexing the Cherry; a book of short stories, The World and Other Places; a collection of essays, Art Objects as well as many other works, including children's books, screenplays and journalism. Her writing has won the Whitbread Award for Best First Novel, the John Llewellyn Rhys Memorial Prize, the E. M. Forster Award and the Prix d'argent at Cannes Film Festival.

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Book Info

Publication date

27th October 2011

Author

Jeanette Winterson

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Author's Website

www.jeanettewinterson.com

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Publisher

Jonathan Cape Ltd an imprint of Vintage

Format

Hardback
240 pages

Categories

Biography / Autobiography
eBook Favourites
eBook Favourites

Autobiography: literary

ISBN

9780224093453

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