How to be both is a novel all about art’s versatility. Borrowing from painting’s fresco technique to make an original literary double-take, it’s a fast-moving genre-bending conversation between forms, times, truths and fictions. There’s a renaissance artist of the 1460s. There’s a child of a child of the 1960s. Two tales of love and injustice twist into a singular yarn where time gets timeless, structural gets playful, knowing gets mysterious, fictional gets real – and all life’s givens get given a second chance.
Shortlisted for the 2014 Man Booker Prize for Fiction.
‘I take my hat off to Ali Smith. Her writing lifts the soul.’ Evening Standard
‘She’s a genius, genuinely modern in the heroic, glorious sense.’ Alain de Botton
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