Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Book Notes — Hawthorn & Child, A Mystery Indeed

I’m a conventional reader, not usually given to experimental fiction nor styles that make me work too hard.  If a prose passage is too dense to penetrate or transitions too confusing my factory-installed monkey mind will wander off on its own for a while.  I might try it again, but if it keeps happening, I put it in a special stack of books destined for eternal procrastination.  From time to time I glance at that stack and say, “It’s not you, it’s me.”

There are passages that light up my brain in Hawthorn & Child by Keith Ridgway.  And I found moments of intense engagement, but I could not stay for the duration. To try to read it is like trying to recall a night of dark dreams, their jagged edges butting against each other. I wake up confused, yet moved. I’d tell you what the book is about, but I can’t. Ian Rankin is quoted by the publishers on the back cover:

“Brilliantly weird.  The novel that has impressed, mesmerized and bamboozled me most this past year is Hawthorn & Child.”

The Times Literary Supplement compares Ridgway to Beckett

The story escaped me, but I love the cover.


Teri-on-the-sandbar said...

Just between us, I think I'd prefer to be called "weirdly brilliant," rather than "brilliantly weird." So next time you need a review, quote me thusly "Wow can that Tierney fellow write! His books charm, enlighten, stimulate. I'd sum him up as weirdly brilliant."

And you can quote me!

Ronald Tierney said...

But, do I bamboozle?