WINNER OF THE WOMEN'S PRIZE FOR FICTION
WINNER OF THE GOLDSMITHS PRIZE 2014
SHORTLISTED FOR THE MAN BOOKER PRIZE 2014
WINNER OF THE 2014 COSTA NOVEL AWARD
WINNER OF THE SALTIRE SOCIETY LITERARY BOOK OF THE YEAR AWARD 2014
NOMINATED FOR THE FOLIO PRIZE 2015
'Brims with palpable joy' Daily Telegraph
'She's a genius, genuinely modern in the heroic, glorious sense' Alain de Botton
'I take my hat off to Ali Smith. Her writing lifts the soul' Evening Standard
How to be both is a novel all about art's versatility. Borrowing from painting's fresco technique to make an original literary double-take, it's a fast-moving genre-bending conversation between forms, times, truths and fictions. There's a renaissance artist of the 1460s. There's the child of a child of the 1960s. Two tales of love and injustice twist into a singular yarn where time gets timeless, structural gets playful, knowing gets mysterious, fictional gets real - and all life's givens get given a second chance.
Passionate, compassionate, vitally inventive and scrupulously playful, Ali Smith's novels are like nothing else.
APPLE BOOKS REVIEW
Reading How to be both is a splendidly dizzying affair, like an amusement park ride that tilts your perspective in exciting and unexpected ways. The inventive novel—winner of the 2015 Baileys Women's Prize for Fiction—presents two separate but mysteriously linked stories: one of a free-spirited Renaissance artist and another about a headstrong British teen reeling from the sudden death of her mother in the ’60s. Scottish author Ali Smith slyly toys with our expectations, writing with impressionistic beauty and creativity about identity, regret and the burning desire to break free of limiting expectations.