Sally Rooney's First Novel Since 'Normal People' Will Hit Bookstores This Year

You'll be able to read the Irish author's first book in three years this September.
Sarah Ward
Published on January 16, 2021

In 2018, it was the book that everyone was talking about. In 2020, it was the TV adaptation that we all watched in one sitting. That'd be Normal People, with Irish author Sally Rooney enjoying a big couple of years thanks to her dramatic romance — even co-writing the screenplay for the television series.

If you've been enjoying all this time spent singing Normal People's praises, but also wondering what's next for Rooney, it's time to rejoice — because 2021 has the answer. In great news for fans of not only of her most popular work, but of her 2017 debut Conversations with Friends as well, the writer will be releasing her third book later this year.

Beautiful World, Where Are You is set to hit shelves on September 7, Rooney's UK publisher Faber has announced. Readers can expect another tale about complicated relationships, this time focusing on novelist Alice. She meets warehouse worker Felix, and asks him to travel to Rome with her — while her Dublin-based best friend Eileen is flirting with Simon, who she has known since she was a kid, to help get over a breakup.

"Alice, Felix, Eileen and Simon are still young – but life is catching up with them. They desire each other, they delude each other, they get together, they break apart," says the official synopsis for the book. "They have sex, they worry about sex, they worry about their friendships and the world they live in. Are they standing in the last lighted room before the darkness, bearing witness to something? Will they find a way to believe in a beautiful world?" it continues.


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That's just one of two new Rooney-related projects to put on your radar, too, with Conversations with Friends following in Normal People's footsteps and getting the TV treatment. It's being adapted as a 12-episode mini-series, with Normal People co-director Lenny Abrahamson and co-writer Alice Birch leading the charge behind the scenes. Just when it'll hit screens hasn't yet been revealed — but you can obviously rebinge Normal People while you're waiting for it to land.

Beautiful World, Where Are You will be published on September 7, 2021. For further details, head to the book's website.

Top image: Normal People.

Published on January 16, 2021 by Sarah Ward
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