It’s the first Saturday of the month so that means it’s #6degrees of separation time! This month’s starting book is Normal People by Sally Rooney.
You can find the details and rules of the #6degrees meme at booksaremyfavouriteandbest, but in a nutshell, on the first Saturday of every month, everyone has the same starting book and from there, you connect in a variety of ways to other books. Some of the connections made are so impressive, it’s a lot of fun to follow.
Normal People. What can I say? People seem to either love it or hate it. I’m firmly in the love it camp. I read a new release recently that reminded me a bit of Normal People, not as though it was a rip-off or anything, but more the tone of relationships forged through trauma, for want of a better description. So, first connection: The Minute I Saw You by Paige Toon. It’s funny, because I’m ordinarily not a huge fan of contemporary novels, but for some reason, authors who are British or Irish must have the magic formula for me when it comes to relationship fiction. And by relationship, I don’t just mean love stories, but those of friendship too. Circle of Friends by Maeve Binchy started this for me, a couple of decades ago now. More recently, I’ve fallen for Josie Silver, particularly her latest, The Two Lives of Lydia Bird, where relationships of love, friendship, and family, are spun out to perfection. Probably my favourite novel of all time by a British author about relationships is Rowan Coleman’s We Are All Made of Stars. Rowan writes with such insight and depth of emotion. All. The. Feels. I guess, if we’re talking about relationships and trauma, Me Before You by Jojo Moyes must surely deserve a place on that list. We’ll finish with another of my favourites, one I made my daughter also fall in love with, Love, Rosie by Celia Ahern. Of course, all of these novels are about finding oneself equally as much as finding life long love; my favourite sort of contemporary fiction.