The Post-Birthday World: A Novel (Paperback)

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American children's book illustrator Irina McGovern enjoys a secure, settled life in London with her smart, loyal, disciplined partner, Lawrence—until the night she finds herself inexplicably drawn to kissing another man, a passionate, extravagant, top-ranked snooker player. Two competing alternate futures hinge on this single kiss, as Irina's decision—to surrender to temptation or to preserve her seemingly safe partnership with Lawrence—will have momentous consequences for her career, her friendships and familial relationships, and the texture of her daily life.

Praise For…

“Original and involving...convincing and beautifully told. Highly recommended.”

“Daring [and] dazzling.”

“Hugely entertaining…tackles the dueling human needs for passion and security with fierce, witty honesty.”

“Shriver writes with elegance and a loaded intensity...she is a brilliant, witty storyteller and the book is utterly compelling.”

“[A] tour de force in literary structure and mastery of language...engrossing.”

“Provocative...stunningly intense.”

“Provocative….The Post-Birthday World is…as unflinching as they come.”


“Witty, formidably bright author…Lively parts…”

“Shriver has a gift for creating real and complicated characters and putting them in less-than-simple situations…Highly engrossing novel…”




“Shriver writes with much intelligence and wryness....The twofold nature of the plot...makes for enlightening reading.”

“The Post-Birthday World is a...radical book.”

“This is a compulsive, clever, wise and witty novel.”



“Shriver is very obviously a perceptive observer and clever chronicler of the human condition, in all its messy, unresolved glory.”

“Shriver is a terrific, intelligent writer.”

“Ingenious...delightful...[Shriver] has produced a novel that’s equal parts entertainment and psychological massage.”

“Ingenious....there is an impressive freshness in her treatment. The writing is intelligent, the characterisation thoughtful, the insights into love, sex and snooker sharp. After her acclaimed 2003 novel, We Need To Talk About Kevin, Shriver confirms her reputation as an original talent.”

“Shriver’s an extraordinary writer. Her perceptiveness of male-female relationships is unsettling, dangerous, familiar and voyeuristic. [The Post-Birthday World is] impossible to put down.”

“Extraordinary...Before it was co-opted and trivialized by chick lit, romantic love was a subject that writers from Flaubert to Tolstoy deemed worthy of artistic and moral scrutiny. This is the tradition into which Shriver’s novel fits.”

“Best novel of ‘07.”
Product Details
ISBN: 9780061187896
ISBN-10: 0061187895
Publisher: Harper Perennial
Publication Date: February 26th, 2008
Pages: 544
Language: English
Series: P.S.