He is a writer who reaches out, both making and bridging worlds. . . . The novel is like a neighbourhood, with chapters about various characters set side by side like so many doors on the same street.
New York Times Book Review
A sad and haunting novel . . . The struggles of the Tolbert family, with love and obligation, with hope and the end of hope, give shape to a plot that does not wholly unspool until the last sentence-about the most dramatic and poignant I have ever read.
With wit, tenderness, and empathy Stewart O'Nan renders a detailed portrait of life that's more than just a description of hard knocks against the backdrop of urban blight. . . A unique and tantalising novel that celebrates the lives of everyday people in an extraordinary way.
San Francisco Chronicle
Reading this novel will reward you with a profound, sobering realisation of the differences that exist between us while insisting nonetheless that we share a profound sameness. O'Nan accomplishes a rare thing, for he has us mourn a common loss. . . .Everyday People aims at restoring to the sufferer and the victim . . . their full and due humanity. . . . It is not a thing easily done. But Stewart O'Nan has pulled it off in beautiful, heartbreaking, haunting fashion.
The heart of the novel is his penetrating description of Fitzgerald's troubled self.
The Sunday Times
O'Nan is serious in his attempt to dig deep into Fitzgerald and his genius... Scott's pain is palpable but O'Nan's prose glitters in response.
Some of O'Nan's most suggestive passages conjure the feeling of freefall that can accompany uncontrollable change.
O'Nan has written a wonderfully intimate and gently absorbing book.
Atmospheric West of Sunset re-imagines the last three troubled years of Fitzgerald's life... Stunning.
A stunning account of F. Scott Fitzgerald's final years.
[A] gorgeous new novel... O'Nan is a writer alert to the courage and beauty inherent in the stories of people who simply have to keep on keeping on.
Mesmerising and haunting...The strings O'Nan pulls so deftly are really the mark of a consummate pro, along the lines of Fitzgerald himself.
O'Nan's adroitness with atmosphere and period detail makes Fitzgerald's dreams of creating worthy work, even with his best days behind him, absorbing and poignant.
The New Yorker
O'Nan... skilfully pulls us into Fitzgerald's gilded and yet familiar world. He brings the Hollywood legends to life. By the end, they feel like friends.
With West of Sunset, one brilliant American novelist has taken on another... big-hearted and fascinating.
[He] brings depth and tenderness to the awkward love affair between Fitzgerald and the gossip columnist Sheilah Graham.
Mail on Sunday
One of the most purely enjoyable novels of the year.
A.V. Club, best books of 2015
West of Sunset focuses on these last, darkly difficult years, folding in details of Fitzgerald's life with subtle, unhurried sympathy. The result is a fine portrait of grace under pressure and moral courage.