About the Book
Title: Everyone Knows this is Nowhere
Author: Alice Furse
Publication: Amazon (2013)
Summary: It’s an endless winter in suburbia, and a young graduate who dreams of fading into anonymity moves in with a traffic warden and accepts a mind-numbing job in an office. Slowly, she starts to believe that the apocalypse is imminent, but unable to find anyone who understands she hatches a plan to save herself – before it’s too late.
Everybody Knows this is Nowhere is an honest, comic, heart-breaking novel about how we love each other and the road to discovering that life rarely happens as we expect. Disarmingly frank, the narrator pulls the novel to its inevitable, and painful, conclusion.
What I Think
I read Alice Furse's debut novel, Everybody Knows This is Nowhere, twice, and that's saying something because I very rarely read a book twice. I thoroughly enjoyed it both times, and that's really saying something.
Sometimes I decided that there had to be another life out there, waiting for me to step into it like a new shoe. My life felt as if it didn't match me at all, as if I'd picked up the wrong one by accident.
The main character (whose name we never find out) has just graduated and not knowing how to get the job of her dreams, accepts a mind-numbing job in an office. Personally this is something I can relate to as I found myself in exactly the same position after university. The book is filled with all the little experiences of working in an office and Furse finds a way to make the endless mundane days at the office interesting.
You love what you love and you believe what you believe.
Relationships are also explored in the novel, the most important being the one between the main character and her boyfriend, the Traffic Warden. They live in "the noisiest place in the universe" and embark on post-uni life together. Relationships between couples in the twenty-first century are changing; there are no longer any rules and it's not always easy to find your way. Which flaws can you accept as endearing, and which are unbearable?
I loved the sharpness of the air in my mouth and the skeletal trees spread like veins on the clear sky.
Alice Furse has a way of looking for the extraordinary in the ordinary, writing about it and making it compelling in a way that I've rarely seen before. Everybody Knows This is Nowhere is like a fly on the wall documentary, but in book form, and it's excellently done. She has a beautiful way with language and the book is packed with similes and descriptions, as well as fabulous one-liners. I would highly recommend this to anyone who is about to finish university (although make sure you're in a 'happy place' when you sit down to read it), anyone who has been frustrated after leaving university and anyone who is looking for a new, unique talent in the world of writing.
About the Author
Alice Furse lives in Brixton, London, and works as a press officer for a national sports radio station. She has an MA in Creative Writing and Everybody Knows this is Nowhere is her first publication.