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Carry Me Down
by M.J. Hyland | Literature & Fiction
Registered by jubby of Sydney, New South Wales Australia on Wednesday, September 27, 2006
Average 5 star rating by BookCrossing Members 

status (set by jubby): travelling


This book is in the wild! This Book is Currently in the Wild!

8 journalers for this copy...

Journal Entry 1 by jubby from Sydney, New South Wales Australia on Wednesday, September 27, 2006

This book has not been rated.

Review taken from www.cannongate.net:

John Egan is a misfit, 'a twelve-year old in the body of a grown man with the voice of a giant who insists on the ridiculous truth'. With an obsession for the Guinness Book of Records and faith in his ability to detect when adults are lying, John remains hopeful despite the unfortunate cards life deals him.

During one year in John's life, from his voice breaking, through the breaking-up of his home life, to the near collapse of his sanity, we witness the gradual unsticking of John's mind, and the trouble that creates for him and his family.

Set in early seventies Ireland, Carry Me Down is a deeply sympathetic take on one sad boyhood, told in gripping, and at times unsettling, prose. It plays out its tragic plot against a disarmingly familiar background and refuses to portray any of its lovingly drawn characters as easy heroes or villains.


Registered for the 2006 Mann Booker Short-list bookring challenge.

Participants:
- Fleebo
- woosang
- miss-jo
- xoddam
- goodthinkingmax
- Sujie
- livrecache
- Jubby (back home to me)
 


Journal Entry 2 by jubby from Sydney, New South Wales Australia on Saturday, September 30, 2006

7 out of 10

Well, I finished. It was an easy read, but... I am still not sure if I agree with the reviews.

Described as a 'tour-de-force' taking the year in the life of a young Irish boy in the early 1970s. John Egan, although being 12 years old, is nearly 6ft tall, and his voice already broken is a boy in a man's body, with a passion for the Guinness World Records.

Still simmering away my opinion on this one. Will get back to you. 


Journal Entry 3 by jubby at Bookring in Bookring, A Bookring -- Controlled Releases on Saturday, September 30, 2006

This book has not been rated.

Released 7 yrs ago (9/30/2006 UTC) at Bookring in Bookring, A Bookring -- Controlled Releases

WILD RELEASE NOTES:

RELEASE NOTES:

Posted off to Fleebo. 


Journal Entry 4 by Fleebo from Sydney, New South Wales Australia on Thursday, October 05, 2006

This book has not been rated.

Received in the mail today. Thanks very much! 


Journal Entry 5 by Fleebo from Sydney, New South Wales Australia on Monday, October 30, 2006

5 out of 10

This was not my idea of a pleasant reading experience.
The style of "Carry Me Down" is simple enough but John, the narrator, is completely unsympathetic, not to mention plain weird. His ideas and behaviour are too wrong to be explained away by his very early puberty, and even his messed up life isn't enough for me. An eleven-year-old should be rejecting kisses and cuddles from his family, shouldn't he, simply out of embarrassment? And it should have been obvious to all that even if he didn't have a man's body he was too old to be allowed into the parents' bed. Okay, there was sexual confusion on his part, but honestly! How does anyone, even a mother, manage to treat somebody 5'8" like a seven year old?
And on top of all that, nothing in the story was resolved. Everything went back to how it had been, only with some additional fear.
All in all: Ew. Instead of this book I recommend "The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Nighttime" by Mark Haddon for a more interesting narrator with that strange apartness, and "Paddy Clarke Ha Ha Ha" by Roddy Doyle, for a more convincing tale of Irish childhood. 


Journal Entry 6 by woosang from Picton, New South Wales Australia on Friday, November 10, 2006

5 out of 10

the Story of a boy who thinks he can detect lies and even seeks the truth and destroys his family unit in the process. I had the deja vu in this story it is very similar to the "Curious Incident of the Dog at Nighttime" It isn't a unique story and not really an enjoyable story. It is told simply and is a quick read despite its size, but definatley not Booker material.

 


Journal Entry 7 by jubby from Sydney, New South Wales Australia on Friday, November 10, 2006

This book has not been rated.

Dear Woosang and Fleebo,

Firstly, let me say thank you. I thought it was just me. I read this book in a day, and enjoyed the format (I used to wish that all books were written in dialogue), but found myself scratching my head.

My husband (the naughty Owl007 - who has never made a journal entry in his life), raves about the book. But me, I thought the book was like a Darren Hanlon song, and 'so post-modern' that the whole interpretation of the story was up to the reader. There was absolutely no conclusion or resolution it was crazy!

Yes, I know that you can argue that life is like that - but literature?

I also found myself questioning the right of this title being on the 2006 Booker prize short list (over my beloved David Mitchell's latest offering?).

This is one crazy book by an Australian author who was able to write with an Australian grant, without ever once mentioning Australia (a sore point with me).

On the upside, I enjoyed the writer's ability to grab me with the intrigue of his parent's relationship and the classroom scene (could you believe the bit about the teacher claiming that 'It's girls like you who cause men to commit rape!'?).

Strange book, but I feel justified that two well-esteemed Bookcrossers like yourselves thought likewise.

Thank you both for your journal entries.

 


Journal Entry 8 by woosang from Picton, New South Wales Australia on Friday, November 10, 2006

This book has not been rated.

LOL Jubby, I have just read a worse book on a similar theme. Called The History of Luminous Motion I have had the mis fortune of reading it straight after Carry me down. **Sigh** shall I send it to your hubby???

I have never been considered well-esteemed before. Crazy, yess but never well esteemed, so I am flattered :) Lets see what the others think... posting it tomorrow (I hope) 


Journal Entry 9 by miss-jo from Sydney, New South Wales Australia on Tuesday, November 28, 2006

4 out of 10

Oh, that was awful! I don't think that I have anything good to say about it. The characters were dreadful, the situations were unpleasant and the outcome was unsatisfying. And could someone a bit cleverer than I explain the point of that stupid doll?

I'll pm xoddam for his addy and get this moving again asap. 


Journal Entry 10 by xoddam from Springwood, New South Wales Australia on Sunday, January 07, 2007

This book has not been rated.

Er, sorry. Miss-jo came to my door to deliver this to me a few weeks ago. I started to read it last night and just realised I never journalled. Book is safe with me and already at the top of my reading list. Everyone seems to dislike it, but miss-jo assures me that because I like all the Booker books she doesn't, I must enjoy this one. So far it's good enough... 


Journal Entry 11 by xoddam from Springwood, New South Wales Australia on Wednesday, January 10, 2007

7 out of 10

Done! And, as correctly predicted on delivery by miss-jo, I *did* like the book. I didn't think it was Great, but certainly on a par with several of last year's longlisted books. Granted, I did read it without expectations, and it finishes inconclusively, but it's a fine and honest piece of writing.

I, for one, did find John to be a sympathetic character. To my mind the book is not so much postmodern as non-judgmental. It's a disarmingly clear narrative of a disruptive period in a child's life and the consequences. We don't really need to know how the story ends.

I expect to give this to goothinkingmax on Tuesday, but I'll double-check that she's coming to the picnic first. 


Journal Entry 12 by goodthinkingmax from Sydney, New South Wales Australia on Tuesday, January 30, 2007

7 out of 10

(Ducking head)...I liked this book, although I don't think it should be on the Booker list. I didn't like the characters and was enormously frustrated by John's situations and his parents' reactions but I thought it really captured a young person on the edge and one who I assume will be consumed by mental issues for the rest of his life! The book disturbed me enormously and I guess I thought that was quite a feat. Perhaps it reminded me of some of the kids I've worked with, when there's no clarity or predictability or neat endings and only off centre interpretations and reactions.

Silly me. I just sent a book to sujie yesterday. I should have checked who I was sending this to next! Will post it off soon. 


Journal Entry 13 by Sujie from Kangaroo Valley, New South Wales Australia on Wednesday, February 21, 2007

This book has not been rated.

Hi silly gtm! (You reassure me I am not alone in absent-mindedness.)It arrived today. For some reason I skimmed down the reviews and am now dubious about this one. What a mixed bag the 2006 Booker is. Worth it for me to be introduced to Sarah Waters, anyway.

livrecache, I may be a little while... 


Journal Entry 14 by xoddam from Springwood, New South Wales Australia on Friday, February 23, 2007

This book has not been rated.

Popping in to endorse the recommendation of The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time, which I received about a year ago at the tail end of a bookray, read because Fleebo (above) reminded me it was there, and which I wild-released in Hanoi a couple of weeks ago. I gave it a nine out of ten. 


Journal Entry 15 by Sujie from Kangaroo Valley, New South Wales Australia on Tuesday, March 13, 2007

This book has not been rated.

Absolutely everything that fleebo said (well, except the kissing and cuddling rejections - my nephews at that age did the same with their parents and me).
On to livrecache... 


Journal Entry 16 by livrecache from Trentham, Victoria Australia on Wednesday, March 21, 2007

This book has not been rated.

Got the book this morning, thanks, Sujie. Now just having read what everyone has had to say about it, I am really curious. I wonder into which camp I shall fall. Like or not. I recall being surprised when Hyland was long-listed for the Booker, as I read her first book How the Light Gets In when it first came out (about five years ago) and I thought she was a very immature writer, but with possibilities. As I recall, and I've long since given the book away, well before I knew about bookcrossing, the protagonist in that was a totally unbelievable and unsympathetic 15-year-old girl who, for quite implausible reasons, had a studentship to the US. She spent the entire book whinging (it was told in the first person) and doing self-destructive and inexplicably motivated things, with no resolution. It would seem that her second book may follow that pattern?

I've got a couple of very earnest rings before this one, so it may be sometime until I get to it, but as I'm last on the list and jubby is away, I guess that's okay. (Incidentally, I too like Mark Haddon's Curious Incident, FWIW. It's in my PC.)
 


Journal Entry 17 by Sujie from Kangaroo Valley, New South Wales Australia on Sunday, April 01, 2007

This book has not been rated.

Just a note to apologise to Fleebo for misreading her statement about kissing and cuddling as a negative. Shows you how far I got before I gave the book away. 


Journal Entry 18 by livrecache from Trentham, Victoria Australia on Thursday, April 12, 2007

This book has not been rated.

Well, I crawled to the end of this book today. It was easy enough reading, but I just wasn't interested in anyone in it. In fact I was almost bored by it. It did startle me a bit at the end when he took the action he did against his mother; that got my interest for a while but nothing came of that either. I do agree with GTM about the nature of the narrator, and its likely life-long effects. I think I would have found the book disturbing if I'd been in the least bit engaged by it. But there was no one to empathise with, all the characters were one dimensional -- as I guess they had to be as seen through this unreliable narrator's eyes.
I'd like to know the significance of the doll too. Also, what is the significance of the title? Perhaps I'm just dense, but I just cannot see how this book made the Booker list.

Thanks for sharing, jubby. I'll send it home to you next week, unless you want to invite anyone else to read it first. 


Journal Entry 19 by livrecache at Mailed at local postoffice in Melbourne, Australia, A Bookring -- Controlled Releases on Monday, April 16, 2007

This book has not been rated.

Released 7 yrs ago (4/16/2007 UTC) at Mailed at local postoffice in Melbourne, Australia, A Bookring -- Controlled Releases

WILD RELEASE NOTES:

RELEASE NOTES:

Posted back home to jubby.

Thanks for sharing. 


Journal Entry 20 by jubby from Sydney, New South Wales Australia on Monday, April 30, 2007

This book has not been rated.

Made it home safe and sound.

I did mention this book to a family friend who was reading the winning Booker Prize book over the summer break, so I'll either send it on to her, or someone else on www.rabck.com.

Thank you all for reading, journalling and posting on. 


Journal Entry 21 by jubby at Controlled Release in Controlled Release, --by post or by hand (ie ring, ray, RABCK, trade) -- Controlled Releases on Tuesday, May 01, 2007

This book has not been rated.

Released 6 yrs ago (5/1/2007 UTC) at Controlled Release in Controlled Release, --by post or by hand (ie ring, ray, RABCK, trade) -- Controlled Releases

WILD RELEASE NOTES:

RELEASE NOTES:

Sending off to a non-bookcrosser. 




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