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How It All Began

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How It All Began Cover

ISBN13: 9780670023448
ISBN10: 0670023442
Condition: Standard
Dustjacket: Standard
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Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

A vibrant new novel from Penelope Lively-a wry, wise story about the surprising ways lives intersect.

When Charlotte Rainsford, a retired schoolteacher, is accosted by a petty thief on a London street, the consequences ripple across the lives of acquaintances and strangers alike. A marriage unravels after an illicit love affair is revealed through an errant cell phone message; a posh yet financially strapped interior designer meets a business partner who might prove too good to be true; an old-guard historian tries to recapture his youthful vigor with an ill-conceived idea for a TV miniseries; and a middle-aged central European immigrant learns to speak English and reinvents his life with the assistance of some new friends.

Through a richly conceived and colorful cast of characters, Penelope Lively explores the powerful role of chance in people's lives and deftly illustrates how our paths can be altered irrevocably by someone we will never even meet. Brought to life in her hallmark graceful prose and full of keen insights into human nature, How It All Began is an engaging, contemporary tale that is sure to strike a chord with her legion of loyal fans as well as new readers. A writer of rare wisdom, elegance, and humor, Lively is a consummate storyteller whose gifts are on full display in this masterful work.

Review:

"Charlotte, who is in her 70s, is mugged, leaving her injured and without her handbag. This delightful, absorbing novel relies on a sophisticated and skillfully realized structure to introduce and then follow its endearingly ordinary characters. Though Charlotte's incident proves to be the first domino to fall, she herself recedes into the background as her daughter, her middle-aged ESL student, her boss, and her boss's niece come to the fore, going about the business of their daily lives and loves, all on a somewhat different path than they would have, had not Charlotte broken her hip. The interdependency of the characters' lives, which they remain largely unaware of, builds intriguing momentum, and the pace quickens as the novel develops. Throughout, prolific Booker Prize — winning author Lively (for Moon Tiger) illustrates her knack for charming familiarity and just the right dash of surprise." Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

About the Author

Penelope Lively was born in Cairo, Egypt, and studied at Oxford University. She is the author of many children's books and adult novels, including the Man Booker Prize-winning Moon Tiger and The Photograph, a Today show Book Club selection. A Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature and a recipient of the OBE and CBE, Lively lives in north London. Visit penelopelively.net.

What Our Readers Are Saying

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Average customer rating based on 2 comments:

Midge M, January 2, 2013 (view all comments by Midge M)
Loved it for the perceptive insights about aging and the role of reading books in the life of the main character.
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No
Hannah Tandeta, January 1, 2013 (view all comments by Hannah Tandeta)
A pleasure, sorry to be finished!
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View all 2 comments

Product Details

ISBN:
9780670023448
Subtitle:
A Novel
Author:
Lively, Penelope
Publisher:
Viking Adult
Subject:
Literary
Subject:
Literature-A to Z
Edition Description:
Hardback
Publication Date:
20120105
Binding:
Hardback
Grade Level:
from 12
Language:
English
Pages:
240
Dimensions:
9 x 6 in 1 lb
Age Level:
from 18

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Related Subjects

Featured Titles » Literature
Featured Titles » New Arrivals
Fiction and Poetry » Literature » A to Z

How It All Began Used Hardcover
0 stars - 0 reviews
$9.95 In Stock
Product details 240 pages Viking Books - English 9780670023448 Reviews:
"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "Charlotte, who is in her 70s, is mugged, leaving her injured and without her handbag. This delightful, absorbing novel relies on a sophisticated and skillfully realized structure to introduce and then follow its endearingly ordinary characters. Though Charlotte's incident proves to be the first domino to fall, she herself recedes into the background as her daughter, her middle-aged ESL student, her boss, and her boss's niece come to the fore, going about the business of their daily lives and loves, all on a somewhat different path than they would have, had not Charlotte broken her hip. The interdependency of the characters' lives, which they remain largely unaware of, builds intriguing momentum, and the pace quickens as the novel develops. Throughout, prolific Booker Prize — winning author Lively (for Moon Tiger) illustrates her knack for charming familiarity and just the right dash of surprise." Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
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