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Solar Bones

By: Mike Mccormack

Publisher: Soho Press

Imprint: Soho Press

Format: Trade Paperback | ISBN: 9781616959531

Other Formats:

Electronic | Hardcover

On Sale: | Pages: 232

  • About the Book
  • Reviews
Longlisted for the 2017 Man Booker PrizeWinner of the Goldsmiths PrizeWinner of the Bord Gáis Energy Irish Book Awards Novel of the Year An Irish Times Book Club Choice"With stylistic gusto, and in rare, spare, precise and poetic prose, Mike McCormack gets to the music of what is happening all around us. One of the best novels of the year." —Colum McCann, author of Let the Great World Spin and TransAtlantic Solar Bones is a masterwork that builds its own style and language one broken line at a time; the result is a visionary accounting of the now.A vital, tender, death-haunted work by one of Ireland’s most important contemporary writers, Solar Bones is a celebration of the unexpected beauty of life and of language, and our inescapable nearness to our last end. It is All Souls Day, and the spirit of Marcus Conway sits at his kitchen table and remembers. In flowing, relentless prose, Conway recalls his life in rural Ireland: as a boy and man, father, husband, citizen. His ruminations move from childhood memories of his father’s deftness with machines to his own work as a civil engineer, from transformations in the local economy to the tidal wave of global financial collapse. Conway’s thoughts go still further, outward to the vast systems of time and history that hold us all. He stares down through the “vortex of his being,” surveying all the linked circumstances that combined to bring him into this single moment, and he makes us feel, if only for an instant, all the terror and gratitude that existence inspires.
...a wonderfully original, distinctly contemporary book, with a debt to modernism but up to something all its own.... McCormack is a pleasure to read on everything from King Crimson...to picking out eyeglasses...but it's the connections that the book keeps coming back to, the way one story relates to another, the whole greater than its parts.... For all its apparent stylistic complexity, “Solar Bones” is a beautifully simple book.
—New York Times
The novel captures the stream of consciousness of a middle-aged Irishman named Marcus Conway, and much like Molly Bloom's soliloquy in James Joyce's “Ulysses,” it is written as a single riverine sentence. There are paragraph breaks to reflect shifts and pauses in thought, but no full stops.... “Solar Bones” is a successful experimental novel, but more than that it is a good human story.
—Wall Street Journal
McCormack matches this thematic control with lively characterization.... Occasionally, the prose falters with instances of redundancy and ineffective repetition.... But some lost opportunities for line edits don't put a serious dent in the overall impact of “Solar Bones.” It's an impressive meditation, as Joyce would say, “upon all the living and the dead.”
—Minneapolis Star Tribune
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