‘The Cruelty Men is a tidal wave that drags you like a piece of debris through Irish history from the ice age to gangland Dublin. A bible of fucked up Irishness.’ –Irvine Welsh
This novel is a new work from the prize-winning author Emer Martin. Her first novel, Breakfast in Babylon, won Book of the Year 1996 at the prestigious Listowel Writers’ Week.
Mary O Conaill, abandoned by her Kerry parents, is resettled in County Meath. This accidental matriarch, ‘a great one for the stories’, faces the task of raising her younger siblings alone. The feral Padraig is disappeared, immured in ‘the big house in Mullingar’. Sean joins the Christian Brothers, Bridget escapes and her brother Seamus inherits the farm. Maeve is sent to serve a family of shopkeepers in the local town; pregnant and unwed, she is placed in a Magdalene Laundry, her twins then forcibly removed and sold on.
This sweeping multi-generational saga from the 1930s to the 1970s follows the psychic and physical displacement of a society in freefall after independence. In an Ireland transiting from folklore to literature, voices of the dispossessed contend with Church and State, its vulnerable citizens struggling with the real-politik of land-hunger and Irish marriage customs, as Ferrante’s Naples meets Solzhenitsyn’s gulags.
The Cruelty Men tells an unsentimental tale of survival with wit, poetic nuance, vitality and authenticity. Its inviting tapestry of first-person narratives preserves through its golden threads a place where race memory encounters the modern world.
|Publisher:||Lilliput Press, Limited, The|
|Sold by:||Barnes & Noble|
|File size:||2 MB|