A Little Life

Hanya Yanagihara

2015 Nominee

Man Booker Prize

2015 Nominee

Waterstones Book Of The Year

2016 Winner

British Book Awards: Fiction Book of the Year

2016 Nominee

Baileys Women's Prize for Fiction

2017 Nominee

International Dublin Literary Award

25 June 2020
9781529061246
736 pages

Synopsis

'I'm not exaggerating when I say this novel challenged everything I thought I knew about love and friendship. It's one of those books that stays with you forever.' – Dua Lipa

The million-copy bestseller, Hanya Yanagihara's A Little Life, by the author of To Paradise, is an immensely powerful and heartbreaking novel of brotherly love and the limits of human endurance.


Winner of Fiction of the Year at the British Book Awards
Shortlisted for the Booker Prize
Shortlisted for the Women's Prize
Finalist for the US National Book Award for Fiction


When four graduates from a small Massachusetts college move to New York to make their way, they're broke, adrift, and buoyed only by their friendship and ambition. There is kind, handsome Willem, an aspiring actor; JB, a quick-witted, sometimes cruel Brooklyn-born painter seeking entry to the art world; Malcolm, a frustrated architect at a prominent firm; and withdrawn, brilliant, enigmatic Jude, who serves as their centre of gravity.

Over the decades, their relationships deepen and darken, tinged by addiction, success, and pride. Yet their greatest challenge, each comes to realize, is Jude himself, by midlife a terrifyingly talented litigator yet an increasingly broken man, his mind and body scarred by an unspeakable childhood, and haunted by what he fears is a degree of trauma that he'll not only be unable to overcome – but that will define his life forever.

'Yanagihara takes you so deeply into the lives and minds of these characters that you struggle to leave them behind.' – The Times

A singularly profound and moving work . . . It's not often that you read a book of this length and find yourself thinking "I wish it was longer" but Yanagihara takes you so deeply into the lives and minds of these characters that you struggle to leave them behind.
A Little Life makes for near-hypnotically compelling reading, a vivid, hyperreal portrait of human existence that demands intense emotional investment . . . An astonishing achievement: a novel of grand drama and sentiment, but it's a canvas Yanagihara has painted with delicate, subtle brushstrokes.
One of the pleasures of fiction is how suddenly a brilliant writer can alter the literary landscape . . . Ms. Yanagihara's immense new book . . . announces her, as decisively as a second work can, as a major American novelist. Here is an epic study of trauma and friendship written with such intelligence and depth of perception that it will be one of the benchmarks against which all other novels that broach those subjects (and they are legion) will be measured.