Book - 2020 | First edition
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"From the Man Booker Prize-winner, a brilliant and moving novel about celebrity, sexual power, and a daughter's search to understand her mother's hidden truths. Katherine O'Dell is an Irish theater legend. As her daughter Norah retraces her mother's celebrated career and bohemian life, she delves into long-kept secrets, both her mother's and her own. Katherine began her career on Ireland's bus-and-truck circuit before making it to London's West End, Broadway, and finally Hollywood. Every moment of her life is a star turn, with young Norah standing in the wings. But the mother-daughter romance cannot survive Katherine's past or the world's damage. With age, alcohol, and dimming stardom, her grip on reality grows fitful and, fueled by a proud and long-simmering rage, she commits a bizarre crime. Her mother's protector, Norah understands the destructive love that binds an actress to her audience, but also the strength that an actress takes from her art. Once the victim of a haunting crime herself, Norah eventually becomes a writer, wife, and mother, finding her way to her own hard-won joy. Actress is finally a book about the freedom we find in our work and in the love we make and keep."-- Provided by publisher.
Publisher: New York : W. W. Norton & Company, [2020]
Edition: First edition
ISBN: 9781324005629
Branch Call Number: F ENRIG-A
Characteristics: 264 pages ; 24 cm


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Apr 05, 2020

Norah is the daughter of a famous Irish actress. Katherine O’Dell has met with success but at 45 she’s struggling. Her good days are over, and Norah becomes not just a daughter but must keep picking up the pieces as her mother sinks into alcoholism, madness and violence. And yet, Norah keeps loving her mother. Of all the people, real and fictional in the book, I find Norah the most interesting. The ending was without resolution. I wonder if that was intentional. Is there a resolution to a relationship of mother and daughter?

Apr 03, 2020

Although the story is interesting it's the writing that brings it to life. Enright seems to complete each paragraph of thought with a clarifying phrase. The daughter, Norah, observes her actress mother and all that surrounds her upbringing and the life thus lead. Its those observations that Enright so aptly describes that brings this novel brilliantly to life.

Nicr Jan 03, 2020

Famous theatrical actress Katherine O'Dell ("a great piece of anguish, madness and sorrow") shares the spotlight here with her daughter, author Norah, who narrates. A searching, penetrating study of two women whose lives are inseparable; beautifully written.


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