NW, by Zadie Smith
Quotes that stood out to me:
"-and need to see a proper doctor. A clinic. We keep trying. And nothing. You're thirty-five this year."
Said Frenchly: nussing. Once they were the same age. Now Leah is aging in dog years. Her thirty-five is seven times his, and seven times more important, so important he has to keep reminding her of the numbers, in case she forgets.
When being bullied Keisha Blake found it useful to remember that if you read the relevant literature or watched the pertinent movies you soon found that being bullied was practically a sign of a superior personality, and the greater the intensity of the bullying the more likely it was to be avenged at the other end of life, when qualities of the kind Keisha Blake possessed - cleverness, will-to-power - became "their own reward," and this remained true even if the people in the literature and the movies looked nothing like you, came from a different socio-economic and historical universe, and - had they ever met you - would very likely have enslaved you or, at best, bullied you precisely the same extent as Lorna Mackenzie who had a problem with the way you acted like you were better than everyone else.
"You're difficult for her to understand."
"Why? What's difficult about me?"
"You have your work. You have Frank. You've got all these friends. You're getting to be so successful. You're never lonely."
Natalie tried to picture the woman being described.
Natalie Blake had completely forgotten what it was like to be poor. It was a language she'd stopped being able to speak, or even to understand.
Other books that came to mind while reading this one:
Wolf Hall because of the sometimes difficult to follow narrative style
Americanah because of the way Smith used multiple POVs to make a point about how the person I see myself as being can be very different than the person other people see
Tangential events/moments/memories that resonated more deeply because of this book:
Chicago's mindless violence and what a waste it is
Winning the genetic lottery
The Haves and Have-Nots