Sally Rooney is an Irish writer and screenwriter, already regarded as one of the foremost millennial writers. She even has been called the ‘Salinger for the Snapchat generation’. Born in 1991, Sally Rooney grew up in Castlebar, County Mayo, and studied English at Trinity College Dublin, graduating with a Master of Arts degree in 2013.
She found success immediately, as her first book, Conversations with Friends, published in 2017 by Faber and Faber, has been the subject of a seven-party auction for its publishing rights. Her second, Normal People, was longlisted for the Man Booker Prize in 2018, and Rooney worked on the television adaptation as a 12-part series.
How to read Sally Rooney’s Books in Order?
Reading Sally Rooney’s Novels
- Conversations with Friends (2017) – Frances is a coolheaded and darkly observant young woman, vaguely pursuing a career in writing while studying in Dublin. Her best friend is the beautiful and endlessly self-possessed Bobbi. At a local poetry performance one night, they meet a well-known photographer, and as the girls are then gradually drawn into her world, Frances is reluctantly impressed by the older woman’s sophisticated home and handsome husband, Nick. But however amusing Frances and Nick’s flirtation seems at first, it begins to give way to a strange-and then painful-intimacy.
- Normal People (2018) – Connell and Marianne grew up in the same small town, but the similarities end there. At school, Connell is popular and well-liked, while Marianne is a loner. But when the two strike up a conversation-awkward but electrifying-something life-changing begins. A year later, they’re both studying at Trinity College in Dublin. Marianne has found her feet in a new social world while Connell hangs at the sidelines, shy and uncertain. Throughout their years at university, Marianne and Connell circle one another, straying toward other people and possibilities but always magnetically, irresistibly drawn back together. And as she veers into self-destruction and he begins to search for meaning elsewhere, each must confront how far they are willing to go to save the other.
- Beautiful World, Where Are You (2021) – Alice, a novelist, meets Felix, who works in a warehouse, and asks him if he’d like to travel to Rome with her. In Dublin, her best friend Eileen is getting over a break-up and slips back into flirting with Simon, a man she has known since childhood. 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. They worry about sex and friendship 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?
Sally Rooney’s Novellas
- Mr Salary (2019) – Years ago, Sukie moved in with Nathan because her mother was dead and her father was difficult, and she had nowhere else to go. Now they are on the brink of the inevitable.