Caroline O'Donoghue

Oct 6, 2023

The Rachel Incident

Knopf 2023

Rachel is a student working at a bookstore when she meets James, and it's love at first sight. Effervescent and insistently heterosexual, James soon invites Rachel to be his roommate and the two begin a friendship that changes the course of both their lives forever. Together, they run riot through the streets of Cork city, trying to maintain a bohemian existence while the threat of the financial crash looms before them.

When Rachel falls in love with her married professor, Dr. Fred Byrne, James helps her devise a reading at their local bookstore, with the goal that she might seduce him afterwards. But Fred has other desires. So begins a series of secrets and compromises that intertwine the fates of James, Rachel, Fred, and Fred's glamorous, well-connected, bourgeois wife. Aching with unrequited love, shot through with delicious, sparkling humor, Caroline O'Donoghue's The Rachel Incident (Knopf, 2023) is a triumph.

Caroline O’Donoghue is an Irish author, journalist and host of the award-winning podcast  "Sentimental Garbage." Her previous work includes a trilogy for young adults, the first of which, All Our Hidden Gifts, is under option to a major international indie with Caroline adapting for long form TV drama. On publication of her first novel, Promising Young Women, she was shortlisted for the Irish Book Awards’ Newcomer of the Year and the Kate O’Brien Award. Her next adult novel, Scenes of a Graphic Nature, was published in 2020 and it is in development as a feature. She has a regular column for The Irish Examiner. Caroline was born in Cork but currently lives in London.

Check out Caroline’s fantastic, award winning culture podcast, "Sentimental Garbage."

Recommendations:

--Ann Patchett, Tom Lake
--Zadie Smith, Fraud
--Esi Edugyan, Washington Black


Chris Holmes is Chair of Literatures in English and Associate Professor at Ithaca College. He writes criticism on contemporary global literatures. His book, Kazuo Ishiguro as World Literature, is under contract with Bloomsbury Publishing. He is the co-director of The New Voices Festival, a celebration of work in poetry, prose, and playwriting by up-and-coming young writers.

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Chris Holmes

Chris Holmes is Chair of Literatures in English and Associate Professor at Ithaca College. He writes criticism on contemporary global literatures. His book, Kazuo Ishiguro as World Literature, is under contract with Bloomsbury Publishing. He is the co-director of The New Voices Festival, a celebration of work in poetry, prose, and playwriting by up-and-coming young writers.

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