A #1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER
LONGLISTED FOR THE MAN BOOKER PRIZE & THE WOMEN'S PRIZE FOR FICTION
An exquisite story of mothers and daughters from the Pulitzer prize-winning author of Olive Kitteridge
Lucy is recovering from an operation in a New York hospital when she wakes to find her estranged mother sitting by her bed. They have not seen one another in years. As they talk Lucy finds herself recalling her troubled rural childhood and how it was she eventually arrived in the big city, got married and had children. But this unexpected visit leaves her doubting the life she's made: wondering what is lost and what has yet to be found.
The story continues in Oh William!, available to read now!
'A terrific writer' Zadie Smith
'A superbly gifted storyteller and a craftswoman in a league of her own' Hilary Mantel
'So good it gave me goosebumps. One of the best writers in America' Sunday Times
A heart-wrenching story of mothers and daughters from the Pulitzer prize-winning author of Olive Kitteridge
I am deeply impressed. Writing of this quality comes from a commitment to listening, from a perfect attunement to the human condition, from an attention to reality so exact that it goes beyond a skill and becomes a virtue. I have never read her before and I knew within a few sentences that here was an artist to value and respect
Strout's best novel yet
An exquisite novel... in its careful words and vibrating silences, My Name Is Lucy Barton offers us a rare wealth of emotion, from darkest suffering to - 'I was so happy. Oh, I was happy' - simple joy
So good I got goosebumps... a masterly novel of family ties by one of America's finest writers
My Name is Lucy Barton confirms Strout as a powerful storyteller immersed in the nuances of human relationships... Deeply affecting novel...visceral and heartbreaking...If she hadn't already won the Pulitzer for Olive Kitteridge this new novel would surely be a contender
Hypnotic...yielding a glut of profoundly human truths to do with flight, memory and longing
This is a book you'll want to return to again and again and again
Slim and spectacular...My Name Is Lucy Barton is smart and cagey in every way. It starts with the clean, solid structure and narrative distance of a fairy tale yet becomes more intimate and improvisational, coming close at times to the rawness of autofiction by writers such as Karl Ove Knausgaard and Rachel Cusk. Strout is playing with form here, with ways to get at a story, yet nothing is tentative or haphazard. She is in supreme and magnificent command of this novel at all times....
My Name Is Lucy Barton is a short novel about love, particularly the complicated love between mothers and daughters... It evokes these connections in a style so spare, so pure and so profound the book almost seems to be a kind of scripture or sutra, if a very down-to-earth and unpretentious one
Speaking on the Penguin Podcast, Elizabeth Strout talks about her ability to imagine character and her mother's impact on her career.
Anything is Possible author Elizabeth Strout on writing about the tougher side of life in small town America, and why these stories are so important