debuts of the month eleanor oliphant book price comparison rebus 30th anniversary eligible curtis sittenfeld
Search our site
Lily and the Octopus by Steven Rowley Read the opening extract of the brand new Steven Rowley book before its publication on 05/10/2017

Carry Me Down by M J Hyland
  

Carry Me Down

Literary Fiction   Reading Groups   

RRP £9.99

Notify me
when in stock

As soon as this book is back in stock we will send you an email.

Download an extract Discuss on Facebook Discuss this book on our Literary Contemporary Facebook group Share this book

Lovereading view...

Shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize for Fiction 2006.

This review is provided by
bookgroup.info.

We chose this book at our last meeting and I picked it up when my bookgroup colleagues had gone intending to read a few pages before I went to sleep. I finally put it down at 3am. Such is the power of the writing in this second novel by M J Hyland.

The story concerns an eleven-year-old boy, John Egan, (donât be put off as I was initially, itâs not jumping on the Curious Incident bandwagon) who is too tall for his age and as fragile as a piece of glass. He relates a year of his life in which the family moves from the relative comfort of his grannyâs house in rural Wexford, to a squalid high-rise in Dublin.

This is a boy with only one real friend, and too much in the company of adults. The relationship between John, his parents and his grandmother is uneasy. John feels disconnected but doesnât understand why. His out of work father, a “couldâve been” academic procrastinates about entering university life, forcing the family to live with his mother, a mean-spirited woman who holds financial power over the family. His mother is on the edge, concerned about her strange son and wayward husband. When they fall out the move to Dublin tips her over. John suffers terribly at this time. Heâs lost his only friend, his mother is depressed and on the brink of a breakdown and his father is in and out of work, gambling and consorting with prostitutes. The shocking denouement jolts the family into realising that their son needs help and we can only hope that they find redemption.

M J Hyland really gets into the head of this boy. Written in spare, flattened prose, it is a sensory tour de force.

If you like M J Hyland you might also like to read books by David Mitchell, Hisham Matar and Andrew O'hagan.

Synopsis

Carry Me Down by M J Hyland

John is a misfit, 'a twelve-year old in the body of a grown man with the voice of a giant'. With an obsession for the "Guinness Book of Records" and faith in his ability to detect when adults are lying, he remains hopeful despite the unfortunate cards life deals him. Set in the seventies Ireland, this book is a sympathetic take on one sad boyhood.

Reviews

“Carry Me Down is uncompromising, unputdownable and done with expert lightness. It's a work of discreet brilliance. M.J.Hyland is a truly gifted writer.” - Ali Smith

About the Author

M J Hyland

M.J. Hyland was born in London in 1968 to Irish parents, and spent her early childhood in Dublin. She now lives and works in Melbourne. Her short stories have been published in Australia, the USA and Ireland and she also edited the literary magazine, Nocturnal Submissions, for a number of years.

More books by this author
Author 'Like for Like' recommendations

Loading similar books...
Loading other formats...

Book Info

Publication date

6th April 2006

Author

M J Hyland

More books by M J Hyland
Author 'Like for Like'
    recommendations

Author's Website

www.mjhyland.com/

Publisher

Canongate Books Ltd

Format

Paperback

Categories

Literary Fiction
Reading Groups


ISBN

9781841957340

Lovereading is an amazing place to be, the website is wonderful and to me if I'm sad I'll go here and it cheers me up!

Sophia Upton

Lovereading is a wonderful way to expand my literary horizons, discover inspiring authors & get the chance to read new novels first. #loveit

Zarina de Ruiter

Lovereading recommends, honestly reviews and promotes books-what more can I say?!

Rachel Bridgeman

It's the first site that I visit when deciding on the next set of books to buy. A particular treat is being able to download an extract.

Tessa Olson

I love the 'like for like' author recommendations, it's like an old friend whispering in your ear.

Emma Caddick

Ever purchased a book, read a few pages & thought I'm not going to enjoy this? Honest book reviews mean you'll never have that problem again

Jill Peters

It has enriched my leisure time by introducing me to a world of books which I would not have previously considered.

Val Rowe

Thanks to Lovereading I have discovered new writers and read books I would never had looked twice at - and enjoyed them.

Angela Rhodes

Lovereading4kids

Lovereading4schools