Sunday, April 29, 2012

Review: A Greyhound of a Girl

A Greyhound of a Girl
By Roddy Doyle
Expected publication May 1, 2012 by Marion Lloyd

Doyle's latest novel for younger readers tells of the journey of four Irish women - one dead, one dying, one driving, and one just starting out.

I wasn't really sure what to expect from this novel - I've never read Doyle before, though he is a prolific writer, and I picked it up on a whim at Midwinter. It was a quick read, but I can't say I found it very engaging. I don't feel like I got to know the characters well enough to be invested in the story and I didn't find it all that interesting. I found Mary to be pretty annoying actually - always being "cheeky" and even when she's not, pretending it just the same. It's a short book so I don't expect an in-depth character analysis or anything, but maybe I should. I felt like all the characters here were flat. Additionally, not much is happening in this book. Mary's grandmother is in the hospital, dying. Mary and her mother go to visit her everyday. One day, walking home from school, Mary meets a woman named Tansey. Though she doesn't know it at first, Tansey is the ghost of her great-grandmother, who died when Emer (Mary's grandmother) was just three. She's come to be a mammy to Emer again as she gets ready to leave this world behind. I feel like this is supposed to be a novel of comfort for those dealing with grief, but I didn't find it so. No one actually seems to need all that much comfort and I don't think Tansey really provides very much of it. This book just didn't really do anything for me.

Thanks to the publisher for an advance reader's copy.

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