Titel: Gaff Topsails
Verlag: Cormorant Books Incorporated, Toronto, ON, Canada
Zustand: Very Good
Art des Buches: Used
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Set in Newfoundland, this story of an Irish Catholic community largely takes place on Midsummer's Day 1948. Its breadth encompasses the events, both great and small, since the founding of the parish in the 15th century.Review:
In this ambitious first novel, author Patrick Kavanagh chronicles a single day--June 24, the Feast of Saint John the Baptist--in a remote village in remote Newfoundland. June 24 is also Sweethearts Day, a day on which young women perform rituals as old as the hills to determine whom they will marry. These two celebrations, one Catholic, the other pagan, serve as the twin lodestones around which Gaff Topsails weaves its complex tale. On the one hand, there is Father MacMurrough, a restless priest who sees his new parish as a punishment and Kevin, an altar boy troubled by notions of God and sin; on the other there is Mary, a young woman in love with love and Michael Barron, a young mute who is starved for it. These characters live out their single day between the twin shadows of two mountains (Gaff Topsails) and an iceberg offshore, their physical isolation a symbol of the spiritual solitude in which they all exist.
Comparisons to James Joyce's Ulysses are, perhaps, inevitable, with the archetypes Kavanagh presents (the fisherman's wife waiting, like Penelope, for her husband to return from the sea), the fragmented narrative, and the occasional stream of consciousness. Like Ulysses, Gaff Topsails is not an easy book to read, but in the end, this novel rewards the patient reader with a crystalline portrait of a day in the life of a small community
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