Book cover for A Little Life (NHB Modern Plays)

A Little Life (NHB Modern Plays)

(stage version)

Description of book

'I promise you more patience, more gratitude. I promise you less vanity, less selfishness, less complaining, less fear. I promise you. You just have to survive.'

A Little Life follows the complex relationships of four college friends in New York City: Willem, an actor; Malcolm, an architect; JB, an artist; and, at the centre of their group, Jude, a lawyer.

Over the decades, their relationships deepen and darken, changed by ambition, addiction and pride. Yet their greatest challenge is Jude himself, whose secrets – and shame – define not just his own life, but that of his friends as well.

A bruising and beautiful story of love, the limits of human endurance, and the tyranny of memory, Hanya Yanagihara's novel

A Little Life has sold over a million copies and was shortlisted for the Booker Prize and the Women's Prize for Fiction.

The stage adaptation – conceived by Ivo van Hove, and adapted by Koen Tachelet, van Hove and Yanagihara herself – was first performed in a Dutch-language production at Internationaal Theater Amsterdam in the Netherlands in 2018, before transferring to New York in 2022. This English-language version opened in London's West End in 2023, directed by Ivo van Hove and with a cast led by James Norton as Jude.

'A masterpiece of modern theatre… a triumph of emotional richness and devastation' -

Telegraph

E-book

English