This Must Be the Place by Maggie O'Farrell
A novel

85%

8 Critic Reviews

There is enough possibility and randomness for three books, yet the story never feels overstuffed, and when it ends, the reader is stunned and grateful, relieved that in the face of all that can go (and have gone) wrong, some things have come right.
-Publishers Weekly

Synopsis

An irresistible love story, an unforgettable family. Best-selling author Maggie O’Farrell captures an extraordinary marriage with insight and laugh-out-loud humor in what Richard Russo calls “her breakout book.” Perfect for readers of Where’d You Go, Bernadette.
 
Meet Daniel Sullivan, a man with a complicated life. A New Yorker living in the wilds of Ireland, he has children he never sees in California, a father he loathes in Brooklyn, and a wife, Claudette, who is a reclusive ex–film star given to pulling a gun on anyone who ventures up their driveway. Claudette was once the most glamorous and infamous woman in cinema before she staged her own disappearance and retreated to blissful seclusion in an Irish farmhouse. 

But the life Daniel and Claudette have so carefully constructed is about to be disrupted by an unexpected discovery about a woman Daniel lost touch with twenty years ago. This revelation will send him off-course, far away from wife, children, and home. Will his love for Claudette be enough to bring him back?
 
“O’Farrell’s prose manages to be both intimate and expansive and keenly perceptive in its insights about the complexities of marriage.  Beautiful and bittersweet, THIS MUST BE THE PLACE will make O’Farrell’s longtime fans swoon while prompting new readers to wonder why they’ve only just discovered her.”
--BookPage
 
 “I have been a huge fan of Maggie O’Farrell’s novels for years.  She writes with tremendous clarity and poise and in THIS MUST BE THE PLACE you are invested in what happens to Daniel and Claudette from the moment you meet them.  A joy to read.”
 --Jane Green
 
“Inventive, moving, and hilarious. I loved it.”  
—Rachel Joyce, best-selling author of The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry
 




From the Hardcover edition.
 

About Maggie O'Farrell

See more books from this Author
Maggie O'Farrell is the author of After You'd Gone, winner of a Betty Trask Award; My Lover's Lover; The Distance Between Us, winner of a Somerset Maugham Award; The Vanishing Act of Esme Lennox; and The Hand That First Held Mine, winner of a Costa Novel Award.













Author Residence: London













Author Hometown: Northern Ireland
 
Published July 19, 2016 by Knopf. 401 pages
Genres: Literature & Fiction, History, Romance. Fiction
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Critic reviews for This Must Be the Place
All: 8 | Positive: 7 | Negative: 1

Kirkus

Excellent
on May 03 2016

The scenario is glamorous, the writing is stylish, the globe-trotting almost dizzying, but there’s a satisfying core of untempered feeling as well.

Read Full Review of This Must Be the Place: A novel | See more reviews from Kirkus

Publishers Weekly

Excellent
on Aug 14 2016

There is enough possibility and randomness for three books, yet the story never feels overstuffed, and when it ends, the reader is stunned and grateful, relieved that in the face of all that can go (and have gone) wrong, some things have come right.

Read Full Review of This Must Be the Place: A novel | See more reviews from Publishers Weekly

NPR

Above average
Reviewed by Heller McAlpin on Jul 19 2016

Readers may question the attraction of skittish, demanding Claudette, whose "default setting is overreaction and outrage," or the plausibility of staying undercover for so long without changing her name. But few will quibble with O'Farrell's heartwarming belief in the power of forgiveness and the irreplaceable "redemption there is in being loved."

Read Full Review of This Must Be the Place: A novel | See more reviews from NPR

Washington Times

Excellent
Reviewed by Claire Hopley on Aug 11 2016

This is an engrossing novel to occupy summer down time and stir thought over autumn months: a work of substance from a writer of impressive, perhaps masterly, skills.

Read Full Review of This Must Be the Place: A novel | See more reviews from Washington Times

NY Times

Good
Reviewed by Elizabeth Graver on Aug 05 2016

In “This Must Be the Place,” O’Farrell lands us powerfully inside these charged meeting points, only to shatter them — and land, and shatter, and land again.

Read Full Review of This Must Be the Place: A novel | See more reviews from NY Times

NY Times

Above average
Reviewed by Elizabeth Graver on Aug 07 2016

Some coincidences, like Claudette’s glimpse of Daniel’s family through a New York window years before they meet in Ireland, feel overly patterned and contrived. But these are small points. This wide-ranging novel has a vivid sense of play, despite its sometimes sober subject matter.

Read Full Review of This Must Be the Place: A novel | See more reviews from NY Times

Guardian

Above average
Reviewed by Alfred Hickling on May 27 2016

It is O’Farrell’s ability to recognise such moments, when they inevitably come, that makes her such a deft and compelling chronicler of human relationships.

Read Full Review of This Must Be the Place: A novel | See more reviews from Guardian

Guardian

Excellent
Reviewed by Hannah Beckerman on May 17 2016

It is her best novel to date, a book that surely confirms her as one of the UK’s most assured, accomplished and inventive storytellers.

Read Full Review of This Must Be the Place: A novel | See more reviews from Guardian

Reader Rating for This Must Be the Place
84%

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