Friday 9 March 2012

Friday Recommends #8....

Friday again, and it's time for my choice of book for Friday recommends...

This is an exciting book blog hop that book bloggers can take part in once a week to share with their followers, the books that they most recommend reading!

The rules for Friday Recommends are:

Follow Pen to Paper as host of the meme.
Pick a book that you've read, and have enjoyed enough to recommend to other readers. It can be a book you've read recently, or a book you read years ago - it's up to you - but make sure you tell us why you love the book (like a mini review). You make the post as long or as short as you like.
Visit the other blogs and enjoy!

My Friday Recommended read #8


A Greyhound Of A Girl 


Roddy Doyle

A Greyhound of a Girl

 I was delighted to receive this book from NetGalley

And my thanks to ABRAMS for allowing  access to a pre-publication galley edition
Publisher: Abrams
Imprint: Amulet Books
Publication Date: 1 May 2012
ISBN: 9781419701689

Four generations of women--"I'm a woman," Mary said to herself--heading off on a journey in a car. One of them dead, one of them dying, one of them driving, one of them just starting out.'

Aimed primarily at the young adult market, A Greyhound of a Girl is a little book with big values. With poignant simplicity Roddy Doyle covers the themes of love, loss and death in remarkable style, without ever giving way to maudlin sentimentality.

From the beginning of the story the characters take on a life of their own, as with uncanny perception, four generations of women from the same family explore the concept of death and dying. Twelve year old Mary, hovering on the threshold of adolescence, is aware that her beloved granny, Emer is failing. When she visits Emer in hospital, Mary’s perception of her own mother Scarlett’s sadness is tender and compassionate, with each of them finding comfort in small things. Yet, when a strange woman appears to Mary, and introduces herself as Tansey, Scarlett is able to deduce that this ghostly figure is Emer’s mother who died when Emer was a baby. Granting Emer a last poignant journey back to her childhood home, helps Mary, Scarlett, Emer and Tansey discover that long forgotten memories have the power to heal, and that by understanding, we give each other a gift of remembrance.

 As the trademark of this talented author is to cover difficult topics with verve and panache, it would be very easy for this book to be dismissed as a light-hearted dance with the angel of death, but with wit and wisdom, A Greyhound of a Girl manages to be both tender and sweet, and sharp and sassy all at the same time. I read the story quickly, it’s remarkably easy to read, and yet the overwhelming theme of familial love, once revealed, stays with you for a very long time.

Sometimes, when faced with the dying process we very often fail our children by trying to protect them from, what is, after all a very natural process. Roddy Doyle has presented a very readable, tender and compassionate look at what happens when the health of a beloved grandparent deteriorates, and whilst his narrative allows memories and stories to compliment, they never overtake the real message that love will survive. 


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