Overview


In this strange, hypnotic novel, Chris McCool, the dandyish, debonair playboy of a small and insulated community called The Happy Club, reflects his two lives: the one he lives, and the darker one he's tried hard to forget. The illegitimate son of a rich Protestant landowner's wife and a poor Catholic farmer, Chris wanted to be a sixties swinger--driving a Ford Cortina, owning a pair of purple velvet flares--but, despite his good intentions, ...
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The Holy City: A Novel

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Overview


In this strange, hypnotic novel, Chris McCool, the dandyish, debonair playboy of a small and insulated community called The Happy Club, reflects his two lives: the one he lives, and the darker one he's tried hard to forget. The illegitimate son of a rich Protestant landowner's wife and a poor Catholic farmer, Chris wanted to be a sixties swinger--driving a Ford Cortina, owning a pair of purple velvet flares--but, despite his good intentions, could not overcome the mysteries and regrets of his own upbringing.

With a series of Freudian flourishes, McCabe gives us a narrator whose own insecurities, and most importantly his obsession with a young Catholic Nigerian boy named Marcus Otoyo, prevent him from seeing the truth of what he is capable of. Are Chris' inner struggles with his parentage and religion merely personal quests--or do they mask an angrier, more dangerous person beneath?

Tense, artful, and eerily compelling, The Holy City is a novel of faith, anxiety, and dark secrets, with a stunning and brilliant conclusion.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781608191604
  • Publisher: Bloomsbury USA
  • Publication date: 7/1/2009
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 224
  • File size: 673 KB

Meet the Author

Patrick McCabe was born in Ireland in 1955. His novels include Music on Clinton Street, Carn, The Butcher Boy and Breakfast on Pluto. The latter two were shortlisted for the Booker Prize. The Butcher Boy won the Irish Times/Aer Lingus Literature Prize in 1992 and was made into a film, directed by Neil Jordan, in 1997. The film Breakfast on Pluto, also directed by and co-written with Neil Jordan, was released in 2006 to great acclaim. His play, Frank Pig Says Hello, was published by Methuen Drama in Far From the Land: New Irish Plays in 1998. Patrick McCabe lives in his home town of Clones, County Monaghan.
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  • Posted March 4, 2012

    CJ Pops, sad, sad, sad

    If I’m going to read a book told by a racist character, or a character with similar un-redeeming qualities, who is not incredibly likable, (but certainly readable), then the writing needs to capture all aspects of that character, not just the controversial apart. The controversy is here in full flower. Every racial slur against blacks is here (even Sambo and Stevie Wonder are used), and also homophobia, 9/11, etc. And while the language is delightfully florid, and there are inherently funny situations, they are still more serious than funny, and the laugh never leaves your throat. Like the movie HAPPINESS.
    CJ Pops is a "half-breed" dairy farmer turned hippie extraordinaire. Despite all outward "pimp"ness, he is, ultimately a tragic, sad man. And, the reveal of this is the only thing let had be go past page 80. I wish I could be more objective, but, with all the bullying going on these days, it was just untimely. The negativity needs to scale with the quality of the writing to make it readable, and not even an amazing author like Patrick McCabe can take you far. It's like watching Nip/Tuck; there is no reward for the reader.
    The only redemption is the use of the word "Freak" towards the end. That episode may make it worthwhile for you. I couldn't stop think about the guy who show up to my house, broke my friend's nose, because he thought he was my brother, and then killed himself a few months after.
    Not an easy read.

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