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Discover Ali Smith's dazzling, once-in-a-generation series, SEASONAL, a tour-de-force quartet of novels about love, time, art, politics, and how we live right now
The final instalment in the Seasonal quartet is out in August 2020. Catch up with Autumn now - Summer is coming...
SHORTLISTED FOR THE MAN BOOKER PRIZE 2017
Chosen by the Guardian as one of the Best Books of the 21st Century
SUNDAY TIMES TOP TEN BESTSELLER
'Undoubtedly Smith at her best. Puckish, yet elegant; angry, but comforting' The Times
A breathtakingly inventive new novel from the Man Booker-shortlisted and Baileys Prize-winning author of How to be both
Daniel is a century old. Elisabeth, born in 1984, has her eye on the future. The United Kingdom is in pieces, divided by a historic once-in-a-generation summer.
Love is won, love is lost. Hope is hand in hand with hopelessness. The seasons roll round, as ever . . .
'Terrific, extraordinary, playful... There is an awful lot to lift the soul' Daily Mail
'Bold and brilliant' Observer
APPLE BOOKS REVIEW
There is strange magic in Ali Smith’s story of an unlikely friendship—and the bitter aftermath of Brexit. Time seemed to warp whenever we picked up Autumn, which is bursting with Smith’s dazzling wordplay and her faith in humanity. Elisabeth Demand first meets Daniel Gluck when she’s a young student tasked with writing a profile of a neighbor. Separated by many decades but united in their curiousity and passion for art, the two develop a lifelong connection. Smith has written an extraordinarily beautiful story that perfectly encapsulates the gift of wonder and the tragedy of societies that give up on it.
This splendid free-form novel the first in a seasonally themed tetralogy chronicles the last days of a lifelong friendship between Elisabeth, a British university lecturer in London, and her former neighbor, a centenarian named Daniel. Opening with an oblique, dreamy prologue about mortality, the novel proper sets itself against this past summer's historic Brexit vote, intermittently flashing back to the early years of Elisabeth and Daniel's relationship. Though there are a few relevant subplots, including Elisabeth's nightmarish attempt to procure a new passport, as well as her fascination with the painter Pauline Boty, the general plot is appropriately shapeless, reflecting the character's discombobulated psyche. Smith (How to Be Both) deftly juxtaposes her protagonists' physical and emotional states in the past and present, tracking Elisabeth's path from precocity to disillusionment. Eschewing traditional structure and punctuation, the novel charts a wild course through uncertain terrain, an approach that excites and surprises in equal turn. Seen through Elisabeth's eyes, Daniel's deterioration is particularly affecting. Smith, always one to take risks, sees all of them pay off yet again.