SYMPATHY

At twenty-three, loner Alice Hare leaves England for New York with only the vaguest of plans: to uncover her origin story and find a city to call home. Instead she discovers the online profile of a Japanese writer called Mizuko Himura, whose stories blur the line between autobiography and fiction. Alice becomes infatuated with Mizuko from afar, convinced this stranger's life holds a mirror to her own. Realities multiply as Alice closes in on her "internet twin", staging a chance encounter and inserting herself into Mizuko's orbit. When Mizuko disappears without warning, Alice is alone and adrift again. Tortured by her sudden silence, Alice uses the only tool at her disposal, writing herself back into Mizuko's story. 

PRAISE FOR SYMPATHY

"Sympathy will double-click your heart." - VANITY FAIR

"Exceptional." - LITERARY REVIEW

"Olivia Sudjic's smart debut novel is an uncomfortably contemporary tale of unrequited love in the digital age." - NEW YORK TIMES BOOK REVIEW

"Exquisite... an astute, quirky, slow-burning satire on emerging codes of behaviour, intergenerational differences, globalisation, the tech industry and the vortex of the dark web." - THE GUARDIAN

"In the digital age, the lives of glamorous others have never felt so tantalizingly near."- VOGUE (US)

"A standout in its approach to social media... a smart and lyrical evocation of that murky emotional terrain between our online and offline selves... proof of Sudjic's electric talent." - VICE

"This impressive novel is alive with clever ideas of how the internet has shaped a generation of people who haven't known adolescence or adulthood without it." - THE TIMES

"A thrilling debut that skewers our digital culture." - FINANCIAL TIMES

"Inventive and highly charged... compelling." - THE TELEGRAPH

"If last summer's must-read debut was Emma Cline's The Girls, this year it's undoubtedly Olivia Sudjic's remarkable Sympathy." - VOGUE (UK)

"Shot through with dark humour and prose that burns like a laptop overheating on your thighs, Sympathy captures the exquisite agony of life online." - AnOther

"Filled with explosive intelligence and dark humour... both beautiful and raw... captures the essence of personal responsibility in the digital age."—ELLE (UK) 

“The best fictional account I’ve read of the way the internet has shaped our inner lives. A literary thriller that confirms the arrival of a major new talent.”THE OBSERVER 

"A darkly beautiful debut novel."- i-D

"A remarkable debut, with the arrival of such a novelist we can finally welcome our techno-dystopian future with open arms." - THE NEW REPUBLIC

"A gripping odyssey into one woman’s online-addled inner life." - THE INDEPENDENT

"Packed with tension, pathos and vitality... A potent first novel from a formidable talent." - STAR TRIBUNE

"Smart, funny and provoking, every bit as addictive as your ex’s Instagram account." - REFINERY29

"Shrewd... super-smart... intriguing." - DAILY MAIL

"Seductive, deeply compelling... poetic and unsettling." - EMERALD STREET

"A powerful and original novel." - Diana Athill

"In this unbelievably accomplished first novel, Olivia Sudjic creates a narrator whose compelling voice is timeless, even as her obsessions and the tools she uses to satisfy them are up-to-the-minute modern. At once a riveting mystery and a literary tour de force, Sympathy had me spellbound from the first page to the last."—Emily Gould  

"Sympathy is a mind-bending novel that skillfully depicts the bizarre interplay of technology and intimacy with a story that is compassionate, funny, and incredibly alarming."—Claire-Louise Bennett

"A masterful, mysterious mindfuck. A dark, nuanced, fantastical and thrilling debut novel, posing questions of reality vs. fiction and exploring the ways that infatuation causes us to lose ourselves." - Chloe Caldwell

"A memorable debut. Sudjic’s acute observation and sharp wit engage readers from the off, but the real revelation here is how Sympathy deepens and darkens as it goes into something altogether rawer, wiser and more challenging." - Peter Ho Davies

Sympathy3-2 copy.jpg