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Before Everything

Victoria Redel

8 Reviews

Rated 0

Fiction, Modern & contemporary fiction (post c 1945)

Before Everything is an ode to friendship for readers of Anne Tyler, Kate Atkinson and Ann Patchett, full of dry humour, quiet wisdom and huge empathy.

'Redel proves that female friendship is the quiet, steady engine that truly runs the world.'
Hannah Tinti

'At once tough and tender, funny and sad, this beautifully written novel articulates the dynamic realities of those wondrous friendships that last a lifetime.' Siri Hustvedt

From youthful scrapes to mid-life turning points, the Old Friends have faced everything together.

So as Anna, their brightest spark, enters hospice, they gather to do what they've always done: they laugh and eat, and help each other make choices and plans, and talk through dilemmas with children and work and love.

But now the sense of time has shifted, and the pattern of their lives takes on a new, urgent meaning. As their shared experiences are recounted and re-lived, this funny, bittersweet ode to friendship shows how even in difficult endings, gifts can unfold.

'Gorgeous, a heartbreaker, a non-stop dazzler, a major achievement.'
Michael Cunningham

'One of the most brilliant, radiant and heartbreaking books I've read in years.'
Molly Antopol

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Praise for Before Everything

  • Terminal illness doesn't always bring out the best in people, nor does it preclude other sorrows. To find an honest and sympathetic reflection of both truths is refreshing - Daily Mail

  • A celebration of life and death - Elle

  • A hugely moving celebration of love, life and friendship . . . Redel's prose is artful and insightful - S Magazine

  • Bittersweet - Grazia

  • An extraordinary, touching and tender story about female friendship - Prima

  • Brings to mind Virginia Woolf's The Waves - BBC Culture

  • Poetic and insightful . . . I have been blown away - Laura Jane Williams, author of BECOMING

  • An unflinching and affecting look at how one woman's final days change the lives of those around her - Publishers Weekly

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Victoria Redel

Victoria Redel was born in New York, and attended Dartmouth College and Columbia University. Her work has appeared in numerous magazines including Granta, Harvard Review, Elle and The New York Times, and she currently teaches at Sarah Lawrence College. Her debut novel, Loverboy, was adapted for a feature film directed by Kevin Bacon. Before Everything is her first novel to be published in the UK.

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