Anything is Possible
Winner of The Story Prize - A Washington Post and New York Times Notable Book - One of USA Today's top 10 books of the year
Recalling Olive Kitteridge in its richness, structure, and complexity, Anything Is Possible explores the whole range of human emotion through the intimate dramas of people struggling to understand themselves and others.
Here are two sisters: One trades self-respect for a wealthy husband while the other finds in the pages of a book a kindred spirit who changes her life. The janitor at the local school has his faith tested in an encounter with an isolated man he has come to help; a grown daughter longs for mother love even as she comes to accept her mother's happiness in a foreign country; and the adult Lucy Barton (the heroine of My Name Is Lucy Barton, the author's celebrated New York Times bestseller) returns to visit her siblings after seventeen years of absence.
Reverberating with the deep bonds of family, and the hope that comes with reconciliation, Anything Is Possible again underscores Elizabeth Strout's place as one of America's most respected and cherished authors.
Praise for Anything Is Possible
"When Elizabeth Strout is on her game, is there anybody better? . . . This is a generous, wry book about everyday lives, and Strout crawls so far inside her characters you feel you inhabit them. . . . This is a book that earns its title. Try reading it without tears, or wonder."--USA Today (four stars)
"Readers who loved My Name Is Lucy Barton . . . are in for a real treat. . . . Strout is a master of the story cycle form. . . . She paints cumulative portraits of the heartache and soul of small-town America by giving each of her characters a turn under her sympathetic spotlight."--NPR
"These stories return Strout to the core of what she does more magnanimously than anyone else."--The Washington Post
"In this wise and accomplished book, pain and healing exist in perpetual dependence, like feuding siblings."--The Wall Street Journal
It's hard to believe that a year after the astonishing My Name Is Lucy Barton Elizabeth Strout could bring us another book that is by every measure its equal, but what Strout proves to us again and again is that where she's concerned, anything is possible. This book, this writer, are magnificent. -- Ann Patchett, No. 1 New York Times bestselling author of 'Commonwealth' This is a shimmering masterpiece of a book...Strout is a brilliant chronicler of the ambiguity and delicacy of the human condition. Anything is Possible is a wise, stunning novel * Observer * The words appear on the page as if breathed there * Sunday Telegraph * Anything is Possible is wonderfully readable because Strout really can write you into a world until you feel you are there with her, in that house, that life, that little Podunk of a place * The Times * Strout's compassion for her fellow creatures, as these anguished, lean stories prove, is as keen as a whip and all the more painful for it * Guardian * The work of Elizabeth Strout suggests that she pays a similar quality of unseparate attention to life, which she - not passively, but actively - takes in, listening to, looking into it, reflecting up on and freeing it once more, remade, in beautifully placed words, onto the page to live again for us, her fortunate readers * Daily Telegraph * Anything is Possible is absolutely wonderful. Here is a writer at the peak of her powers: compassionate, profoundly observant, laser-cut diamond brilliant * Literary Review * Anything Is Possible confirms Strout as one of our most grace-filled, and graceful, writers * Boston Globe * There is immense humanity in Strout's writing....her masterful economy of prose creates a rich tapestry infused with emotional wisdom...Anything is Possible is a masterpiece * Sunday Express * A quietly gripping deception of some of the ordinary, messy, interwoven lives that Lucy and her mother discussed in the earlier book * Radio Times * Strout, always good, just keeps getting better * Vogue US * In her latest work, Strout achieves new levels of masterful storytelling. * Publisher's Weekly * [F]ull of searing insight into the darkest corners of the human spirit... 'Anything Is Possible' is both sweeping in scope and incredibly introspective. That delicate balance is what makes its content so sharp and compulsively readable... With assuredness, compassion and utmost grace, her words and characters remind us that in life anything is actually possible * San Francisco Chronicle * The epic scope within seemingly modest confines recalls Strout's Pulitzer Prize winner, Olive Kitteridge, and her ability to discern vulnerabilities buried beneath bad behavior is as acute as ever. Another powerful examination of painfully human ambiguities and ambivalences-this gifted writer just keeps getting better. * Kirkus Reviews * If you miss the charmingly eccentric and completely relatable characters from Pulitzer Prize winner Elizabeth Strout's best-selling My Name is Lucy Barton, you'll be happily reunited with them in Strout's smart and soulful Anything is Possible * Elle US * Strout once again shows her talent for adroitly uncovering what makes ordinary people tick * Booklist * Strout pierces the inner worlds of these characters' most private behaviors, illuminating the emotional conflicts and pure joy of being human, of finding oneself in the search for the American dream * Nylon * Amgash, Illinois, will be familiar to Elizabeth Strout fans as the hometown of the protagonist of her 2016 novel, My Name is Lucy Barton. In Anything is Possible... Lucy's legend looms large... but no prior reading is required to enjoy Strout's powerful writing and empathy * Real Simple * We devoured Strout's last novel, My Name Is Lucy Barton, and her latest-which is loosely linked to Lucy Barton-is no different. Told from multiple points of view, it's about residents of a small town in Illinois struggling with the most relatable and quotidian problems... you'll swear you know these characters. (In fact, it reminds us a bit of another of Strout's masterpieces, the excellent Olive Kitteridge.) * PureWow * Elizabeth Strout's prose is like words doing jazz -- Rachel Joyce I am deeply impressed. Writing of this quality comes from a commitment to listening, from a perfect attunement to the human condition, from an attention to reality so exact that it goes beyond a skill and becomes a virtue. -- Hilary Mantel on 'My Name is Lucy Barton' A powerful storyteller immersed in the nuances of human relationships -- Observer on 'My Name is Lucy Barton' Tender, elegiac, this is the story of a single life that also manages to tell the story of many -- Independent on 'My Name is Lucy Barton' The writing is wrenchingly lovely. It almost always is with Strout, whether she's knitting metaphors or summarizing, with agonizing economy, whole episodes. * New York Times * There are not many novelists out there producing writing as good as this * Daily Mail * Down to every sentence, it's wise, touching and quietly powerful * Grazia * As always, Strout treats even the most difficult characters with rare understanding. "It made me feel much less alone," says on reader of Lucy's memoir. The same will surely be said of Anything Is Possible * People (Book of the Week) * Gorgeous... Strout is in that special company of writers like Richard Ford, Stewart O'Nan and Richard Russo, who write simply about ordinary lives and, in so doing, make us readers see the beauty of both their worn and rough surfaces and what lies beneath -- Maureen Corrigan, NPR / Fresh Air Highly enjoyable * Sunday Times * A subtle, disturbing and touching book that is a miracle of wisdom and perception * Mail on Sunday * A beautifully told story of small-town Americans dealing with big life issues * Good Housekeeping * Utterly beautiful in the way that these characters were flawed to their core yet brimful of keeping it together no matter what...I loved it, there wasn't a moment when I didn't believe it. -- Barb Jungr * BBC Radio 4 Saturday Review * In all her novels, including this one, "the kindness of strangers is a fierce sun than can pierce the cloud" * The Week * Every chapter has depth, nuances, restrained descriptions and luminous characterisation. A wonder of a book * i Newspaper * Elizabeth Strout is a novelist in whose hands anything really is possible, and if you've yet to discover her, make this holiday the one you do * Daily Mail * This glimmering, profound, beautiful novel is modern American writing at its best' -- Clare Allfree
Elizabeth Strout is the Pulitzer prize-winning author of Olive Kitteridge, as well as The Burgess Boys, a New York Times bestseller, Abide With Me and Amy and Isabelle, which won the Los Angeles Times Art Seidenbaum Award for First Fiction and the Chicago Tribune Heartland Prize. She has also been a finalist for the PEN/Faulkner Award and the Orange Prize. She lives in New York City and Portland, Maine.