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Himself
by Jess Kidd


Overview - " A] fast-paced yarn that nimbly soars above the Irish crime fiction genre Kidd clearly knows very well." -- New York Times Book Review
" A] supernaturally skillful debut." -- Vanity Fair
"A delicious, gratifying and ageless story." -- New York Journal of Books
Abandoned on the steps of an orphanage as an infant, Dublin charmer Mahony assumed all his life that his mother had simply given him up.
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More About Himself by Jess Kidd
 
 
 
Overview
" A] fast-paced yarn that nimbly soars above the Irish crime fiction genre Kidd clearly knows very well." --New York Times Book Review
" A] supernaturally skillful debut." --Vanity Fair
"A delicious, gratifying and ageless story." --New York Journal of Books
Abandoned on the steps of an orphanage as an infant, Dublin charmer Mahony assumed all his life that his mother had simply given him up. But when he receives a tip one night at the bar suggesting that foul play may have led to the disappearance of his mother, he decides to return to the rural Irish village where he was born to learn what really happened twenty-six years earlier.
From the moment he sets foot in Mulderrig, Mahony's presence turns the village upside down. His uncannily familiar face and outsider's ways cause a stir among the locals, who receive him with a mixture of curiosity (the men), excitement (the women), and suspicion (the pious). It seems that his mother, Orla Sweeney, had left quite an impression on this little town--dearly beloved to some, a scourge and a menace to others. But who would have had reason to get rid of her for good?
Determined to find answers, Mahony solicits the help of brash pot-stirrer and retired actress Mrs. Cauley, and the two concoct an ingenious plan to get the town talking, aided and abetted by a cast of eccentric characters, some from beyond the grave. What begins as a personal mission gradually becomes a quiet revolution: a young man and his town uniting against corruption of power, against those who seek to freeze their small worlds in time, to quash the sinister tides of progress and modernity come hell or high water. But what those people seem to forget is that Mahony has the dead on his side....
Centering on a small town rife with secrets and propelled by a twisting-and-turning plot, Himself is a gem of a book, a darkly comic mystery, and a beautiful tribute to the magic of language, legacy, and storytelling.

 
Details
  • ISBN-13: 9781501145179
  • ISBN-10: 1501145177
  • Publisher: Atria Books
  • Publish Date: March 2017
  • Page Count: 384
  • Dimensions: 9.1 x 6.1 x 1.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.3 pounds


Related Categories

Books > Fiction > Literary

 
Publishers Weekly Reviews

Publishers Weekly® Reviews

  • Reviewed in: Publishers Weekly, page .
  • Review Date: 2017-01-30
  • Reviewer: Staff

In her exceptional debut novel, Kidd explores the dark corners of the human mind in small-town 1970s Ireland, creating a haunting story that moves between the supernatural and the mundane. A murder mystery on the surface, the story digs past the traditional whodunit structure to paint a rich portrait of village life. Mahony, a charming young man who can communicate with the dead, returns to Mulderrig, Ireland, his birthplace, in search of the truth about his mothers mysterious disappearance. As he dredges up the towns best-kept secrets, the line between past and present blurs, ghosts of the departed shadowing the footsteps of those still living. Mahonys quest is, at its core, a journey of self-discovery, yet his presence, much like his mothers, creates a ripple that churns into a tempest, ultimately threatening the stability of the town as a whole. The lavishly populated cast of characters boasts unique quirks, hidden motivations, and a dangerous instinct for self-preservation. In Mulderrig, Mahony learns, all is not as it seems; the departed prove to be the least of his worries. While the plot hurtles along at a rapid pace, leading inexorably to the heart-pounding final conflict, Kidd injects ample doses of macabre humor and lyrical description in this memorable story from a strange, bold new voice. (Mar.)

 
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