by OConnor, Joseph | Literature & Fiction |
ISBN: Global Overview for this book
Registered by ana-laurentien of Ludwigsburg, Baden-Württemberg Germany on 9/25/2007
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5 journalers for this copy...
Journal Entry 1 by ana-laurentien from Ludwigsburg, Baden-Württemberg Germany on Tuesday, September 25, 2007


Journal Entry 3 by DEESSE from Erstein, Alsace France on Monday, November 26, 2007
Since the Franco-German meetup in april I knew about this wonderful Gelbe Seiten-Café and its even more wonderful official bookcrossing zone.
So I "suggested" to my non-bookcrossing-boyfriend to have a coffee there - and off I went in front of the red box.
What a hard choice! I finally went home with this one.

And: Shame on me: We left home in such a rush, that I forgot my exchange book for the bookcrossing zone!
I've already heard a lot about this book and its author; it's a shame, ana-laurentien, that you did't leave a journal entry (what you thought of it).

Thank you, anyway! The book is safe with me (just don't know when I'll get to reading it...)

Journal Entry 4 by DEESSE at Erstein, Alsace France on Thursday, June 16, 2011
I finally read this book for the "reduce MTBR-challenge" (May 2011 - "Ja wo samer denn?) but couldn't finish it in May.

I liked it a lot - a very touching story, quite surprising how the lives of the main characters get entangled and finally meet in Inishowen.

In the lapse of just a few pages there are very touching passages (when Martin visits his dead son's grave for the first time) next to very funny ones (Dick Spiggot and Milton's son Lee playing a practical joke on Milton in Spigott's private Lear jet ...):

"He had a powerful urge to speak aloud to his son, but for some reason found that he couldn't do that. (...) He reached into his pocket and took out the book. "The Boys' Treasury of Irish Ghost Stories". (...) Kneeling now, his fingers raked a small hollow in the gravel. He put in the book and covered it over.
A few minutes later, she came back up the path with a small buch of snowdrops and wild ferns. She handed him the flowers. He put them in the urn. (...)
'Listen,' he said, 'thanks for coming with me.'
'There's something I want to say to you, Martin.'
'It sounds stupid.'
'Well... what is it?'
'It was what you said earlier. About him being so alone.'
'What about it?'
Tears filled her eyes. 'I'll take good care of him for you, Martin,' she said.
He moved forward and took her in his arms. 'Don't be talking like that,' he whispered. (...) They stood very still for a few minutes more." (p. 406)

"Spiggot stopped dead.
'Shit,' he said.
'What's wrong?'
'Shit. Look. The cockpit's door's closed.'
'Is that a problem?'
'Well, in a way, yeah.'
'It's an experimental security door I had fitted. Cast iron. (...) So it can't be opened from this side.'
'But the pilot can open it himself, right?'
'It's coded not to be openable for an hour.'
'Jesus Christ Almighty, Dick. That's a child up there. In a fucking plaster cast!'
'Stop freaking out, Milton, let me think.'
'We'll just keep flying until the hour is up.'
'Well, that's the unfortunate thing of it, Milton.' He looked at his watch. 'We're going to run out of fuel in like twenty-five minutes.' (...)
'Quick. We need to break down this door.'
'Too late, Milton,' Spiggot panted. 'We're losing altitude. I think one of the engines must have just cut.' (...)
'You're gonna have to land the plane by yourself. You think you can do that, baby mine?'
When Amery turned, Spiggot was doubled over, his head rocking up and down with helpless laughter. (...) He staggered forward, (...) pressed the combination lock and the door swung open. Lee was slumped in the pilot's seat, holding his sides, making strangled noises of abandoned glee. He held out his hand. Spiggot high-fived him.
'Lee?' said Amery.
'Guess we gotcha, Dad.'
Spiggot picked up the radio handset.
'Donegal?' he said. 'Miss Clinton's coming in.' (p. 413 f.)

This is all spiced up with the sort of humour I like a lot!

Here are some passages I would like to quote:

"But all women were complicated, (...) full of endless layers and dizzying depths of emotion. (...) Know a man for a week and you knew him for life. Like a small, confused, semi-extinct woodland creature, a man was entirely predictable in his pitiful little habits. But you could never accuse a woman of predictability. You could know a woman your whole life and she would still turn around one morning and do something that would shock you to the core of your being. (...) Let's face it, they were lunar. Some more than others. Ellen was so lunar she was practically tidal." (p. 36)

"On the corner of Fifth and 57th a Mexican policeman on a large brown horse seemed to regard him accusingly. Even the horse didn't look too happy to see him. It stared in his direction, disaprovingly munching; its huge yellow molars like those of an ageing rock star.
Happy now? it seemed to be saying. You royal son of a bitch.
He peered at the horse as it sneeringly masticated. Then reached out a hand to stroke its bridle. As if obeying some divine ordinance, it raised its tail and shat on the sidewalk.
There ya go, Milton Amery. That's what I think of you, ya big phoney." (p. 37)

"The corporal shook his head. 'You won't be going this route.'
'But we can't do that. We're late already.'
'Look, if you want the gospel truth, boss, I don't give a flying fiddler's shite what you do. Just turn her round and get out of here. This minute.'" (p. 287 f.)

Journal Entry 5 by DEESSE at Erstein, Alsace France on Monday, April 09, 2012
This book will travel "home" toIreland with me - to the Bookcrossing Convention in Dublin!

Journal Entry 6 by DEESSE at Camden Court Hotel in Dublin, Co. Dublin Ireland on Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Released 8 yrs ago (4/13/2012 UTC) at Camden Court Hotel in Dublin, Co. Dublin Ireland


during the BC Convention - on a book table?

Journal Entry 7 by wingBookgirrlwing at Dublin, Co. Dublin Ireland on Tuesday, April 17, 2012
There are so many O'Connors in Ireland, I never in a million years would have thought, "Oh, this might be a relative of Sinnead O'Connor". In fact, Joseph O'Connor IS Sinnead's brother. This book was recommended by a very friendly Irish Bookcrosser I chatted with at the annual Bookcrossing Convention, April 13 - 15 in Dublin. Unfortunately, I don't remember her name, but she had a cane/support - sorry, not sure what it's called - and was wearing a bright tangerine coloured top. I could have talked to her all day! (PS: ana-laurentien, the Dublin Bookcrossing label is lovely)

Journal Entry 8 by wingBookgirrlwing at Acton, Ontario Canada on Thursday, October 25, 2012
Well, this was a real page-turner. Aitken reminded me a bit of Ian Rankin's Rebus character - although you get much more emotionally involved with Aitken. I really enjoyed this book until the part leading up to and including the flight in the private jet (near the end). We already knew Spiggot was outrageous, but I found this segment of the story sliding into the too-ridiculous - almost forced - as if the author felt he needed suddenly to inject comic relief. It wasn't necessary, as there had been lovely, low-key moments of humour already. (Aitken's conversations with Hughie and Ranjiv were wonderful!) Just my 2 cents - and I look forward to reading more Joseph O'Connor books. I'll take this one to our meetup at Harbord House Pub in November.

Journal Entry 9 by cestmoi at Hamilton, Ontario Canada on Thursday, November 28, 2013
I picked this up at Harbord House this afternoon. The bookshelves were a bit untidy (but not overflowing anymore) so I straightened them out a bit and had a lovely chat with the proprietor about BookCrossing. He was so enthusiastic!

Journal Entry 10 by cestmoi at Hamilton, Ontario Canada on Monday, December 16, 2013
Like bookgirrrl I could see the similiarities between Aitken and Rebus, although I think Aitken is more vulnerable and more fragile than Rebus.

About a third of the way through the novel, I was pretty much ready to pack it in, I didn't like any of the main characters. They all had one thing in common - they were selfish - even the minor characters were only out for themselves. All for different reasons and with different motivations, but selfish nonetheless. Then as I kept reading, I realised that although they were selfish and unlikable, O'Connor had written them as real people with real flaws and that interested me enough to keep reading. Thankfully, a minor character (Lee, Ellen's son) has a bit of a turnaround moment at the end so the novel does not drown in self pity and self aggrandizing.

I agree with the bookgirrl that the whole Dick Spiggott episode in the plane seemed contrived and unnecessary where there was already so much organic humour within the novel and some of the situations.

I will definitely be on the look out for O'Connor's other novels.


Inspector Martin Aitken's life is a mess. Divorced, his career's in chaos, and the last thing he needs this Christmas Even is a strange woman collapsed on a Dublin street. Ellen Donnelly is a woman on a mission, coming to Ireland to find her mother and escape her unfaithful husband. Dr Milton Amery is a New York plastic surgeon. All three of their roads lead to Inishowen.

Journal Entry 11 by cestmoi at Hamilton, Ontario Canada on Saturday, April 05, 2014
Sending the winner of the March Sweets Sweep Contest.


Journal Entry 12 by snowyalberta at Edmonton, Alberta Canada on Tuesday, April 15, 2014
Received today for being the sweet sweeps winner, thanks :)

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