Autumn by Ali Smith

I borrowed this book a long time ago and returned it without reading it. On yet another library trip, I ended up wanting to give it another shot and actually read it on my next train journey.
I was a little surprised by the content. Somehow, given the cover and the blurb, I was expecting short stories. Obviously, now having read it, I cannot seem to find out why I would have thought so in the first place.
This is not a linear story. For people who dislike a back-and-forth, this tale would be especially annoying. I am not always a fan, but given the straightforwardness of the actual plotline, I think the changes between chapters improved the book.
I was not as involved in world news in 2016 and was quite surprised that Brexit was already making its rounds. Although Brexit does not play a role in the story we watch, it is ever-present in the background.
Elisabeth is the primary narrator, with Daniel chipping in during his coma. Their relationship is not evident till almost halfway through the book. Given that it is a short book, that is not too bad. The main attraction of the book is the description of the mundane. The most average of tasks, like that of getting a new passport, is narrated in an entertaining manner.
I liked my time with the book, especially the speed at which I managed to move through the story, as I was expecting to have it move slowly. It is not a swift narrative, but it was not bogged down any more than required for such a theme.
I will probably try the rest of the quartet with redefined expectations and see where that gets me.
I am not sure which sort of audience would best appreciate this, but it has been around a while, and I am sure all the people interested have already made up their minds about it.


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