Adult Onset

Product Details
$25.95  $24.13
Tin House Books
Publish Date
5.7 X 1.4 X 8.6 inches | 1.3 pounds
BISAC Categories:

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About the Author
Ann-Marie MacDonald is an author, actor, playwright, and broadcaster. Her first novel, "Fall on Your Knees" was a critically acclaimed "New York Times" bestseller. It won the Commonwealth Prize, was short-listed for the Giller Prize, and won the People s Choice Award and the Canadian Booksellers Association Libris Award for Fiction Book of the Year. In 2002 it became an Oprah s Book Club selection. It has been translated into 19 languages. Her second novel, "The Way the Crow Flies" was an "New York Times" bestseller, a finalist for the Giller Prize, and a Good Morning America Book Club pick. It has been translated into 13 languages.
Her first solo-authored play, "Goodnight Desdemona (Good Morning Juliet)" won the Chalmers Award, the Governor General s Award, and the Canadian Authors Association Award. Her other works for the stage include the libretto for the chamber opera Nigredo Hotel, book and lyrics for the musical "Anything that Moves" (which garnered several Dora Awards, including Outstanding New Musical), and "Belle Moral: A Natural History."
She lives in Montreal with her partner and their two children.

Praise for "Adult Onset"
"[B]ig, troubling and bravenovel."
"New York Times Book Review"
"[Adult Onset is] the most accurate description of solo parenting I've ever read....[MacDonald's] writing is dizzying and brilliant, and often disorienting, which beautifully supports the novel's themes, perfectly capturing how it feels to be unmoored and seemingly alone."
"Associated Press"

"Riveting . . . MacDonald s strong narrative is a compelling examination of the loneliness and the often-absurd helplessness of being a parent of young children."
"Publishers Weekly"
Ms. MacDonald strikes just the right tone as she exposes the brutal undercurrents of domestic life.
"New York Times "

"This is an affecting, multilayered account of domestic ennui and the painful effects of long-held secrets on three generations."
"[F]ine, clearly detailed writing makes for an accomplished read..."
"Library Journal"
"Ann-Marie MacDonald captures the dark hilarity of parenthood like nobody else. I gulped down "Adult Onset" in a single day."
Emma Donoghue, author of "Room" and "Frog Music"
"A complex, troubling novel that cuts with surgical precision into the sinew and muscle of family life."
Sarah Waters, author of "The Paying Guests"
MacDonald fashions, after a 10-year hiatus, a novel impossible to put down once begun. . . . MacDonald . . . scans the parameters of parenthood with an unflinching gaze. Her depiction of the perils of everyday domestic turmoil can be harrowing as well as, at times, hilarious. . . . Since MacDonald s books have all been so extraordinary, it is impossible to rank Adult Onset against the others. Suffice it to say the novel is superb, a fine blending of fact and fiction, of remembered incident and forgotten history, a wonderfully written treatise on the power of the past to impinge on the present.
Nancy Schiefer, "The London Free Press" (also in the "Toronto Sun," "Edmonton Sun")
In basic factual terms, there is barely a playing card s width between life and art in ["Adult Onset," ] an intricate, gripping novel that is also a master class in turning the personal into the universal through art.
Brian Bethune, "Maclean s"
"Adult Onset" is the third novel by Ann-Marie Macdonald. . . . The scene is set for a roller-coaster ride offering brief moments of serenity amid increasingly terrifying plunges into the darkness of Mary Rose s past. Suspense builds; surely, horror awaits. . . . Macdonald s book remains spellbinding throughout. It is impossible to forget, despiteor perhaps because ofan ending that leaves the reader exhausted and with no easy answers.
Paul Gessell, "Quill & Quire"
Though all of Ann-Marie s works are very distinct entities . . . her third book has the same beautifully crafted descriptions and character-driven storytelling that readers have come to love from the writer.
Jill Buchner, "Canadian Living"
One of the remarkable things about "Adult Onset" is how viscerally and honestly it deals with the trials and tribulations of domestic life.
Adrian Chamberlain, "Times Colonist"
One of the highly anticipated novels of the season is the latest from the award-winning novelist Ann-Marie MacDonald.
Joseph Planta, ""
If you re of [an anxious] disposition, reading Ann-Marie MacDonald s latest novel, "Adult Onset," is both a blessing and a curse. It s certainly an accurate depiction, and best described as exposure therapyan exercise in committing yourself to multiple hours of low-grade anxiety, like walking into a crowded, sweltering room if you re claustrophobic, wandering a fluorescent-lit hospital if you re a hypochondriac, or travelling a long distance via air if you have a fear of flying. There s an inexplicable sense of doom to overcome if you re going to get through it, a looming spectre of disaster, even if all seems well on the surface as you turn each page. "Adult Onset" is MacDonald s long-awaited third novel, following her highly successful blockbuster 1996 debut, "Fall on Your Knees," and her 2003 Giller Prize shortlisted "The Way The Crow Flies." . . . At its core, "Adult Onset" is about what happens when we are unable to face the physical and emotional pain of our past head on, and how the chronic illness of trauma will haunt even the most insignificant moments of our days. . . . It is a high achievement for a writer to portray the persistent worry of avoidance in a way than rings true, and MacDonald has beyond succeeded. It is in this sense that "Adult Onset" is both a book that is difficult to endure, and one worthy of our praise and attention. . . . Many of us will see ourselves in the profound discomfort MacDonald has conjured, and though the narrative lends itself to frustration as a result, the book is an absolute triumph of terrifying authenticity.
Stacey May Fowles, "National Post"
Art imitates life in "Adult Onset." . . . Tackling many heavy topics including miscarriage, depression, homophobia, and physical abuse, "Adult Onset" is an overall enjoyable read focusing on guilt, grief, memory, and family.
Carlyn Schellenberg, "The Manitoban"
A stunning and powerful work that will knock readers on their collective keister. . . . Bold novel. . . . In "Adult Onset," every character has depth, a story, nuance.
Ron Johnson, "Post City Toronto"
Celebrated author, Ann-Marie Macdonald . . . is poised to return to the literary spotlight with her first book in more than a decade. . . . The multi-faceted author, actor, playwright, and broadcaster refashioned events from her own life.
Vit Wagner, "Quill & Quire"
One of the most anticipated new fiction releases this fall.
Laura Eggertson, "Toronto Star"
Scheduled to appear sometime this year, MacDonald s "Adult Onset" is not yet being publicized; there is no cover or plot summary posted on the Random House Canada website or on It doesn t matter. Her many fans, having read her first two books, the epic and masterful "Fall On Your Knees" and "The Way the Crow Flies," are waiting with bated breath for whatever the new book turns out to be. If "Adult Onset" is anything like the previous two novels it will be a marvelous, complex romp through recent history and current reality, crammed with memorable characters offering a stimulating view of the world.
"The Rover" (Montreal)
Everyone is keeping a tight lid on what it s all about, but I can guarantee you it ll be a bestseller.
Brenna Clarke Gray, "Book Riot" ("Adult Onset" is one of 10 Reasons You Should [Re]Discover CanLit in 2014 )
"Adult Onset" s low simmer is a change of pace from MacDonald s previous murder-mystery spy thriller "The Way the Crow Flies," and literary debut "Fall on Your Knees." . . . What remains, however, is MacDonald s effortless ability to quickly spin pathos into humour, making the suffering of her characters humane and never heavy-handed.
Leah Golob, "The Georgia Straight"
"Suffice it to say ["Adult Onset"] is superb, a fine blending of fact and fiction, of remembered incident and forgotten history, a wonderfully written treatise on the power of the past to impinge on the present."
"The Toronto Sun"
"A lively, moving, and often funny story that has the potential to help usher in a new era of honest literary depictions of families in all their permutations."
"The Walrus"
"MacDonald s book remains spellbinding throughout. It is impossible to forget."
"Quill & Quire"
"In "Adult Onset," MacDonald tracks what looks like a well-do-to creative-class person who is wrestling with a dark force, except in this case the menace is largely confined to the interior, a matter of memory and psychology. And she has again delivered a masterpiece."
"The Globe & Mail"
"[Th]e book is an absolute triumph of terrifying authenticity. . . .Adult Onset is . . . worthy of our praise and attention."
"The National Post"

Praise for "Fall On Your Knees"
In this resonant first novel Ms. MacDonald skillfully shifts the story backward and forward in time, giving it a mythic quality that allows dark, half-buried secrets to be gracefully and chillingly revealed.
"The New York Times"
The uniqueness of MacDonald s voice, and of her approach, lies in her ability to distillShe can capture, deftly, the fleeting moment, the fragmented feelings that make up so much of what we term understanding . Thus, complex experiences become single, vivid images. It is a rare talent that can produce it for others to see.
"The London Times"

Praise for "The Way the Crow Flies"
" engrossing, disturbing and layered tale."
"The Chicago Tribune"
"One of the finest novels I've read in a long, long time."
"The Washington Post""