Ordinary Human Failings

Ordinary Human Failings

The compulsive new novel from the author of Acts of Desperation


* Shortlisted for Fiction – 2023 Nero Book Awards *

After the death of a young girl, the finger of suspicion is pointing at one reclusive family…

‘Ambitious and original’ DAVID NICHOLLS

‘Gripping… a triumph’

It’s 1990 in London and, after the death of a young girl on an estate, the finger of suspicion is pointing at one reclusive Irish family: the Greens.

At their heart sits Carmel: beautiful, other-worldly, and once destined for a future beyond her circumstances until life – and love – got in her way. Now, as the scandal unfolds and the tabloids hunt their monster, she must confront the secrets and silences that have trapped her family for so many generations.

‘Tightly written, full of wisdom...terrific!’


‘Daring, brilliant…bold and beautiful’


‘A compulsive read’


  • Megan Nolan's debut novel saw her grouped with other Irish millennial women such as Sally Rooney and Naoise Dolan. But with her ambitious and insightful second novel, Ordinary Human Failings, Nolan makes it clear she is not a manifestation of a type, but rather a writer to be read on her own terms
    Financial Times

About the author

Megan Nolan

Megan Nolan was born in 1990 in Waterford, Ireland and is currently based in London. Her essays and reviews have been published by the New York Times, White Review, Guardian and Frieze amongst others. Her debut novel, Acts of Desperation, was published by Jonathan Cape in 2021 and was the recipient of a Betty Trask Award, shortlisted for the Sunday Times Young Writer of the Year Award and longlisted for the Dylan Thomas Prize.
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