Book Review: Spring by Ali Smith

Why should you read this book?

Wow, I am writing this review and not even five minutes have passed since I’ve finished this book! But that’s how I want to do it. When I started Spring by Ali Smith – the third installment of the Seasonal Quartet – I thought to myself: is there a chance that Ali Smith may be compromising the quality of her books to obey her deadlines? After all, Autumn was published in 2016, Winter in 2017 and, now, we have Spring in 2019. But, after reading this book, I just have to say that Ali Smith is a genius. The literary quality hasn’t been compromised in any way. It must be tough, very tough. But she just manages it because she is Ali Smith, a magician of some sorts!

Spring is a web of stories. We have Richard Lease, a film director who has just embarked on a journey to Scotland. Paddy, his longtime friend, has died of cancer and he’s grieving. Then, we have Brittany Hall – or Brit – who is an intelligent woman who works within a system in which the main goal is the detention of refugees.

Ali Smith isn’t for everybody. Spring – as the rest of the Seasonal Quartet – isn’t linear. It’s also full of art, political and historical references. But I wouldn’t described her as difficult or hard to read. It just takes a different approach and she’s 100% worth your time! Spring may have become my favorite in this quartet and I cannot wait for Summer, that’s probably coming out next year!

I’d like to thank Hamish Hamilton for sending a review copy. You can buy the book here.

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Summary:

What unites Katherine Mansfield, Charlie Chaplin, Shakespeare, Beethoven, Brexit, the present, the past, the north, the south, the east, the west, a man mourning lost times, a woman trapped in modern times?

Spring. The great connective.

With an eye to the migrancy of story over time, and riffing on Pericles, one of Shakespeare’s most resistant and rollicking works, Ali Smith tells the impossible tale of an impossible time. In a time of walls and lockdown, Smith opens the door.

The time we’re living in is changing nature. Will it change the nature of story? Hope springs eternal.

Book Details:

Publisher: Hamish Hamilton (Penguin Random House UK)
Published on: March 2019
Format: Hardback
Pages: 352
Price: £16.99

5stars

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