The trailer of Dolly Alderton’s Everything I Know About Love has dropped – these are the books to read ahead of the TV show, from Amazon, Waterstones and more
Upon its release in 2018, Dolly Alderton’s Everything I Know About Love became a rallying call for millennials – with its hilarious and heartbreaking anecdotes of female friendship, romantic relationships and life in your twenties resonating with a whole generation of women.
Now, the cult-favourite book is set to be a BBC TV series – and judging from the trailer that dropped over the weekend, the Alderton-penned screen adaptation is destined for similar success.
Starring Emma Appleton, Bel Powley, Marli Siu and Aliyah Odoffin in the four leads, the seven-episode series is set in London in 2012 and will draw upon the themes of the book, from heartbreak and humiliation to platonic love and growing up.
Taking place in a north London flatshare with flashbacks to suburban adolescence in the early Noughties, the trailer hints at the chaotic nights out, awkward first dates and one-night stands that made the book such an instant hit with readers.
“It’s a messy, boisterous, joyful romantic comedy about two female best friends from childhood and what happens when they move into their first London house share and move into their first phase of adulthood,” said Alderton of the adaptation.
The BBC series will drop on 7 June, but if you can’t wait until then, there is plenty of literature to get you in the mood ahead of the TV show. Whether you’re looking for a new book to get stuck into with similar themes of friendship and romance, or you’re looking to revisit a classic, these are the love-themed tomes to add to your reading pile.
‘Everything I Know About Love’ by Dolly Alderton, published by Penguin: £7.37, Amazon.co.uk
Fun, moving and relatable, it’s no surprise that Alderton’s debut was such a runaway success. Tracing her booze-fulled journey through her twenties in London, the memoir recounts enduring female friendships, ill-advised nights out, romance, relationships and the chaos of young adulthood. Whether writing on love, loss or jobs, Alderton brings her wit, warmth and humour to every anecdote.
‘Ghosts’ by Dolly Alderton, published by Penguin: £7.49, Waterstones.com
Dolly Alderton’s first foray into fiction explored many of the same themes as Everything I Know About Love, particularly heartbreak and female friendship. Very much a romance story of the modern age, the protagonist Nina meets the mysterious Max on a dating app and soon begins a fiery fling. While Alderton’s memoir recounted life as a Twenty-something, Ghosts explores figuring things out as a Thirty-something, set against a backdrop of fading friendships, aging parents, a career and life playing out online.
‘Conversations With Friends’ by Sally Rooney, published by Faber & Faber: £4.50, Amazon.co.uk
Another book to get the BBC adaptation treatment, Sally Rooney’s second novel follows best friends Frances, an aspiring writer, and Bobbi, a spoken word poet, and their befriending of an older couple. Melissa is a well-known journalist while Nick is an actor, both of whom slowly allow Frances and Bobbi into their world of debauched dinner parties, holidays in Provence and beautiful houses. The overlapping relationships that ensue explore modern love and human connections.
‘I Feel Bad About My Neck’ by Nora Ephron, published by Transworld Publishers: £9.99, Waterstones.com
This classic collection of essays from writer Nora Ephron is timeless in its takes on womanhood, resonating with generation after generation. Dolly Alderton herself penned the introduction for this latest reissue of the 2006 tome, writing that “Nora’s exacting, precise, didactic, tried-and-tested, sophisticated-woman-wearing-all-black wisdom is a comfort and a relief.” Revealing her thoughts on everything from sartorial choices to marriage choices, Ephron uses her accessible, charming and witty voice to explore bikini waxes, roll necks, handbags, divorces and more.
‘Conversations On Love’ by Natasha Lunn, published by Penguin: £8.49, Waterstones.com
Delving into the world of love, journalist Natasha Lunn enlisted the help of Roxane Gay, Dolly Alderton, Philippa Perry, Candice Carty-Williams and plenty more to explore this theme in a collection of essays that draw upon both her own and her contributors experiences. From vulnerability and parenthood, to loneliness, loss and the science of sex, a breadth of topics that are connected to love are discussed with vigour and candor.
‘Animals’ by Emma Jane Unsworth, published by Canongate Books: £7.19, Amazon.co.uk
Charting the chaos of young adulthood, Animals is a recent cult classic. Funny and poignant in equal measures, the story follows best friends and housemates Laura and Tyler who are not quite ready to grow up.
Similarly to Everything I Know About Love, Unsworth’s Animals is just as much an ode to partying as it is to female friendships – and how much more empowering they can be over romantic relationships. When Laura becomes torn between her raucous nights with Tyler and her relationship with her sensible, sober boyfriend, the novel explores what happens at the crossroads in life.
‘Exciting Times’ by Naoise Dolan, published by Weidenfeld & Nicolson: £5.47, Amazon.co.uk
Naoise Dolan’s sharp, deadpan and pithy writing helped make Exciting Times one of 2020’s most engaging and acclaimed debuts. The story centers on Ava, a 22-year-old Dubliner living in Hong Kong in her posh banker boyfriend’s swanky apartment rent-free. For Ava, relationships are a power game where emotions never come into play and maintaining the upper hand is imperative; these notions are challenged when she enters into a love triangle with her boyfriend and a female lawyer. Riffing off themes of class, gender, race and love, the novel explores the complexities of human connection.
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