book cover of Actress
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Actress

(2020)
A novel by

 
 
One of Time's 100 Must-Read Books of 2020

A Washington Post Notable Work of Fiction in 2020

Longlisted for the 2020 Women's Prize for Fiction

A brilliant and moving novel about celebrity, sexual power, and a daughter’s search to understand her mother’s hidden truths.


Katherine O’Dell is an Irish theater legend. As her daughter, Norah, retraces her mother’s celebrated career and bohemian life, she delves into long-kept secrets, both her mother’s and her own. Katherine began her career on Ireland’s bus-and-truck circuit before making it to London’s West End, Broadway, and finally Hollywood. Every moment of her life is a performance, with young Norah standing in the wings. But the mother-daughter romance cannot survive Katherine’s past or the world’s damage. With age, alcohol, and dimming stardom, Katherine’s grip on reality grows fitful. Fueled by a proud and long-simmering rage, she commits a bizarre crime.

As Norah’s role gradually changes to Katherine’s protector, caregiver, and finally legacy-keeper, she revisits her mother’s life of fiercely kept secrets; and Norah reveals in turn the secrets of her own sexual and emotional coming-of-age story. Her narrative is shaped by three braided searches—for her father’s identity; for her mother’s motive in donning a Chanel suit one morning and shooting a TV producer in the foot; and her own search for a husband, family, and work she loves.

Bringing to life two generations of women with difficult sexual histories, both assaulted and silenced, both finding—or failing to find—their powers of recovery, Actress touches a raw and timely nerve. With virtuosic storytelling and in prose at turns lyrical and knife-sharp, Enright takes readers to the heart of the maddening yet tender love that binds a mother and daughter.

Genre: Literary Fiction

Praise for this book

"With Anne Enright, we are always in the country of the first-rate. Her work is stark, clear, authoritative, funny and inventive. We come away from her books consistently refreshed and renewed. She understands the full capacity of our stories and our language, braiding them together with apparent ease." - Colum McCann


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Used availability for Anne Enright's Actress

Hardback Editions

October 2020 : USA Hardback
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Title: Actress (Thorndike Press Large Print Basic)
Author(s): Anne Enright
ISBN: 1-4328-8337-2 / 978-1-4328-8337-9 (USA edition)
Publisher: Thorndike Press Large Print
Availability: Amazon   Amazon CA   Amazon AU   


March 2020 : USA Hardback
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Title: Actress: A Novel
Author(s): Anne Enright
ISBN: 1-324-00562-9 / 978-1-324-00562-9 (USA edition)
Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company
Availability: Amazon   Amazon CA   Amazon AU   


March 2020 : Canada Hardback
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Title: Actress: A Novel
Author(s): Anne Enright
ISBN: 0-7710-0591-1 / 978-0-7710-0591-6 (Canada edition)
Publisher: McClelland & Stewart
Availability: Amazon CA   


February 2020 : UK Hardback
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Title: Actress: LONGLISTED FOR THE WOMEN'S PRIZE 2020
Author(s): Anne Enright
ISBN: 1-78733-206-3 / 978-1-78733-206-5 (UK edition)
Publisher: Jonathan Cape
Availability: Amazon   Amazon UK   Amazon AU   


Paperback Editions

February 2021 : UK Paperback
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Title: Actress: LONGLISTED FOR THE WOMEN'S PRIZE 2020
Author(s): Anne Enright
ISBN: 1-5291-1213-3 / 978-1-5291-1213-9 (UK edition)
Publisher: Vintage
Availability: Amazon UK   Amazon CA   Amazon AU   


February 2021 : Canada Paperback
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Title: Actress: A Novel
Author(s): Anne Enright
ISBN: 0-7710-0593-8 / 978-0-7710-0593-0 (Canada edition)
Publisher: McClelland & Stewart
Availability: Amazon CA   


February 2021 : USA Paperback
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Title: Actress: A Novel
Author(s): Anne Enright
ISBN: 0-393-54145-2 / 978-0-393-54145-8 (USA edition)
Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company
Availability: Amazon   Amazon UK   


February 2020 : UK Paperback
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Title: Actress: LONGLISTED FOR THE WOMEN'S PRIZE 2020
Author(s): Anne Enright
ISBN: 1-78733-207-1 / 978-1-78733-207-2 (UK edition)
Publisher: Jonathan Cape
Availability: Amazon UK   Amazon AU   


Audio Editions

March 2020 : USA Audio CD
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Title: Actress
Author(s): Anne Enright
ISBN: 1-66448-781-6 / 978-1-66448-781-9 (USA edition)
Publisher: Recorded Books, Inc. and Blackstone Publishing
Availability: Amazon   Amazon AU   


March 2020 : USA Audio edition
thumb

Title: Actress
Author(s): Anne Enright
Publisher: Recorded Books
Availability: Amazon   


March 2020 : Canada Audio edition
thumb

Title: Actress
Author(s): Anne Enright
Publisher: Recorded Books
Availability: Amazon CA   


March 2020 : UK Audio edition
thumb

Title: Actress
Author(s): Anne Enright
Publisher: Recorded Books
Availability: Amazon UK   


March 2020 : USA Audio edition
thumb

Title: Actress: A Novel
Author(s): Anne Enright
Publisher: McClelland & Stewart
Availability: Amazon   


March 2020 : Canada Audio edition
thumb

Title: Actress: A Novel
Author(s): Anne Enright
Publisher: McClelland & Stewart
Availability: Amazon CA   


March 2020 : UK Audio CD

Title: Actress
Author(s): Anne Enright
ISBN: 1-4450-8745-6 / 978-1-4450-8745-0 (UK edition)
Publisher: ISIS Audio Books
Availability: Amazon UK   


March 2020 : UK Audio CD

Title: Actress
Author(s): Anne Enright
ISBN: 1-4450-8746-4 / 978-1-4450-8746-7 (UK edition)
Publisher: ISIS Audio Books
Availability: Amazon UK   


February 2020 : USA Audio edition
thumb

Title: Actress
Author(s): Anne Enright
Publisher: Penguin Audio
Availability: Amazon   


February 2020 : Australia Audio edition
thumb

Title: Actress
Author(s): Anne Enright
Publisher: Penguin Audio
Availability: Amazon AU   


February 2020 : UK Audio edition
thumb

Title: Actress
Author(s): Anne Enright
Publisher: Penguin Audio
Availability: Amazon UK   


Kindle Editions

March 2020 : USA Kindle edition
thumb

Title: Actress: A Novel
Author(s): Anne Enright
Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company
Availability: Amazon   


March 2020 : Canada Kindle edition
thumb

Title: Actress: A Novel
Author(s): Anne Enright
Publisher: McClelland & Stewart
Availability: Amazon CA   


February 2020 : Australia, UK Kindle edition
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Title: Actress: LONGLISTED FOR THE WOMEN'S PRIZE 2020
Author(s): Anne Enright
Publisher: Vintage Digital
Availability: Amazon UK   Amazon AU