Longlisted for the 2021 Women’s Prize
An intimate, bracingly intelligent debut novel about a millennial Irish expat who becomes entangled in a love triangle with a male banker and a female lawyer. Politically alert and lacerating, yet dryly funny, Exciting Times is thrillingly attuned to the subtle paths of postcolonial privilege and the great freedoms and greater uncertainties of modern love.
I had real fun with Exciting Times. It is a very funny, spiky, Marxist, feminist comedy and it’s really mean. ~ Zadie Smith
Exciting Times more than lives up to the hype … Likely to fill the Sally-Rooney-shaped hole in many readers’ lives. ~ Irish Times
Exciting Times by Naoise Dolan
Ava, newly arrived in Hong Kong from Dublin, spends her days teaching English to rich children.
Julian is a banker. A banker who likes to spend money on Ava, to have sex and discuss fluctuating currencies with her. But when she asks whether he loves her, he cannot say more than “I like you a great deal.”
Enter Edith. A Hong Kong–born lawyer, striking and ambitious, Edith takes Ava to the theater and leaves her tulips in the hallway. Ava wants to be her—and wants her.
And then Julian writes to tell Ava he is coming back to Hong Kong… Should Ava return to the easy compatibility of her life with Julian or take a leap into the unknown with Edith?
Politically alert, heartbreakingly raw, and dryly funny, Exciting Times is thrillingly attuned to the great freedoms and greater uncertainties of modern love. In stylish, uncluttered prose, Naoise Dolan dissects the personal and financial transactions that make up a life—and announces herself as a singular new voice.