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Romantic Novel: “Normal People” By Sally Rooney

In honor of the month of ~love~ I am reviewing a romantic novel about relationships that I unintentionally read right around Valentine’s Day. “Normal People” is a novel following the relationship of Marianne and Connell from the end of high school to early college/adulthood and so on. I heard of this book because it turned into a show on Hulu and I like reading books that are later turned into movies or short series, so I decided to read it! I could not put this book down and read it in Two. Days.

The book is 273 pages and tells a very compelling story of an unconventional romance and friendship. The dynamic of their relationship is confusing, compassionate, full of love, resentment, hurt and loneliness at times. I have never read about two people so compatible yet in such a complicated relationship. It also took me about a quarter of the way into the book to realize the setting of it was in Ireland which was pretty different. One way to perfectly describe the relationship of Marianne and Connell is “right place, wrong time”. I love books/movies and series where you see characters in different stages of life, so their character development is depicted pretty clearly as you see those stages and that’s what the author did with this story.

Something about this book that took me a few pages to get used to in the beginning is that the author doesn’t use quotation marks for dialogue. This was sometimes confusing in terms of figuring out who was speaking but wasn’t a major flaw in the book. Marianne and Connell are different people, but they have a very transparent understanding of each other which is comforting for the both of them. The characters change a bit from high school to college and it is really interesting to see how they react to each other’s character growing and evolving from their high school persona to a new social atmosphere. After reading this, I think the title of the book is meant to be ironic, since their relationship is unusual and the ups and downs in the book aren’t really normal to me, but I guess that could be up for debate as someone could say it is normal for a relationship to not be super clear and have a set path that it is supposed to follow.

This book really touched me and gave me a cute relationship to vicariously live through and obsess over for the month; it is February after all! To be completely honest when I picked up this book, I had no idea it had anything to do with romance and I originally thought it was going to be a book about friendship (again relating to the unorthodox title). Overall, I would rate this book a 100/10 and anyone who reads it will not be disappointed.

Occupational Therapy student! I am an Aquarius, I love sleeping, music, and working out :)
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