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Autumn (Seasonal Quartet) (Paperback)

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Staff Reviews

I think Ali Smith might be made of magic.  This book moves; it dances to the arc of characters' recollected memories, it glides over penned autumn winds, it rises and falls with sleep-filled breaths.  Autumn tells the story of two friends, Elisabeth and George, who form a singularly special friendship when elementary-aged Elisabeth and her mother move in next door to George, an old (in his eighties) musician, full of passion for art from the sixties.  In her typical non-linear style, Smith narrates a fifty-year chunk of time in Britain, focusing especially on the juxtaposition of the then (empowered artists, hope-filled futures), and the now (horrifying nationalism, self-imposed isolation).  Smith will leave you clinging to the last page.

— From Charlotte's Picks


Long-listed for the Gordon Burn Prize

One of the New York Times 10 Best Books of the Year
A Washington Post Notable Book
One of the Best Books of the Year: NPR, Dwight Garner/The New York Times, Martha Kearney/The Guardian, Slate, Chicago Tribune, Southern Living, Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel, The Morning News, Kirkus Reviews

Autumn. Season of mists and mellow fruitfulness. Two old friends--Daniel, a centenarian, and Elisabeth, born in 1984--look to both the future and the past as the United Kingdom stands 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.

A luminous meditation on the meaning of richness and harvest and worth, Autumn is the first installment of Ali Smith's Seasonal quartet, and it casts an eye over our own time: Who are we? What are we made of? Shakespearean jeu d'esprit, Keatsian melancholy, the sheer bright energy of 1960s pop art. Wide-ranging in time-scale and light-footed through histories, Autumn is an unforgettable story about aging and time and love--and stories themselves.

About the Author

Ali Smith is the author of many works of fiction, including the novel Hotel World, which was short-listed for both the Orange Prize and the Man Booker Prize and won the Encore Award and the Scottish Arts Council Book of the Year Award, and The Accidental, which won the Whitbread Award and was short-listed for the Man Booker Prize and the Orange Prize for Fiction. Her most recent novel, How to be both, was a Man Booker Prize finalist and winner of the Baileys Women's Prize for Fiction, the Goldsmiths Prize, the Costa Novel Award, and the Saltire Society Scottish Fiction Book of the Year Award. Born in Inverness, Scotland, Smith lives in Cambridge, England.
Product Details
ISBN: 9781101969946
ISBN-10: 1101969946
Publisher: Anchor Books
Publication Date: October 17th, 2017
Pages: 288
Language: English
Series: Seasonal Quartet