Why Be Happy When You Could be Normal?
Jeanette Winterson's bold and revelatory novels have established her as a major figure in world literature. She has written some of the most acclaimed books of the last three decades, including her internationally bestselling first novel, Oranges Are Not the Only Fruit, the story of a young girl adopted by Pentecostal parents that is considered one of the most important books in contemporary fiction.
Jeanette's adoptive mother loomed over her life until Jeanette finally moved out at sixteen because she was in love with a woman. As Jeanette left behind the strict confines of her youth, her mother asked, "Why be happy when you could be normal?"
This memoir is the chronicle of a life's work to find happiness. It is an audiobook full of stories: about a girl locked out of her home, sitting on the doorstep all night; about a religious zealot disguised as a mother who has two sets of false teeth and a revolver in the dresser drawer; about growing up in a north England industrial town in the 1960s and 1970s; and about the universe as a cosmic dustbin. It is the story of how a painful past, which Winterson thought she had written over and repainted, rose to haunt her later in life, sending her on a journey into madness and out again, in search of her biological mother. It is also an audiobook about literature, one that shows how fiction and poetry can guide us when we are lost.
Witty, acute, fierce, and celebratory, Why Be Happy When You Could Be Normal? is a tough-minded search for belonging--for love, identity, and a home.
The shocking, heart-breaking - and often very funny - true story behind Oranges Are Not the Only Fruit
"A fierce and funny exploration of her past and of what it means to belong." - "The Telegraph" "At every turn . . . her fresh, vivid way of putting things stops one dead in admiration." - "The New York Times" "She writes in flights of poetry. . . . She is equally deft with straightforward prose, in which she makes sharp, wry observations on her myriad themes--love, sex, technology, society, art, the life and death of the spirit." - "San Francisco Chronicle" "Blazingly good." - "Daily Mail" "Arguably the finest and most hopeful memoir to emerge in many years, and, as such, it really should not be missed." - "The Times" "Breathtaking: witty, biblical, chatty and vigorous all at once.... Powerful." - "Financial Times" "Remarkable.... Brave and beautiful, a testament to the forces of intelligence, heart and imagination. It is a marvellous book and a generous one." - "The Spectator"
Jeanette Winterson OBE is the author of ten novels, including The Passion, Sexing the Cherry and Written on the Body, 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. Visit her website at www.jeanettewinterson.com