Vivian, accused of being a changeling when she was a child, now lives alone in a ramshackle house in Dublin. Each day she painstakingly travels the city streets searching for the magic portal that will take her to her true home. Odd and compulsive behaviors cause those around her to publicly judge her as eccentric and privately label her mad. But when Vivian advertises for a friend and meets Penelope, the two create a singular bond of recognition and respect. Just as fellow Dubliner Leopold Bloom wandered for a day, so does Vivian earnestly roam through the city, carefully documenting both its delights and dark corners with curiosity and deadpan humor. Vivian will break your heart with her honesty and simple desire to be accepted.
-Cindy— From Cindy's Recs
-- Irish Book of the Year Finalist
-- An Amazon Best Books of the Year So Far pick A whimsical, touching debut about loneliness, friendship and hope... Vivian doesn't feel like she fits in - and never has. As a child, she was so whimsical that her parents told her she was "left by fairies." Now, living alone in Dublin, the neighbors treat her like she's crazy, her older sister condescends to her, social workers seem to have registered her as troubled, and she hasn't a friend in the world. So, she decides it's time to change her life: She begins by advertising for a friend. Not just any friend. She wants one named Penelope. Meanwhile, she roams the city, mapping out a new neighborhood every day, seeking her escape route to a better world, the other world her parents told her she came from. And then one day someone named Penelope answers her ad for a friend. And from that moment on, Vivian's life begins to change. Debut author Caitriona Lally offers readers an exhilaratingly fresh take on the Irish love for lyricism, humor, and inventive wordplay in a book that is, in itself, deeply charming, and deeply moving.
About the Author
Caitriona Lally studied English Literature in Trinity College Dublin. She has had a colourful employment history, working as an abstract writer and a copywriter alongside working as a home helper in New York and an English teacher in Japan. She has traveled extensively around Europe, Asia, the Middle East, and South America. Caitriona was shortlisted for 'Newcomer of the Year' in the Irish Book Awards in 2015.
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