The Abstainer

The Abstainer

A Novel

Book - 2020 | First edition.
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"The rebels will be hanged at dawn, and their brotherhood is already plotting revenge. Stephen Doyle, an Irish-American veteran of the Civil War, arrives in Manchester from New York with a thirst for blood. He has joined the Fenians, a secret society intent on ending British rule in Ireland by any means necessary. Head Constable James O'Connor has fled grief and drink in Dublin for a sober start in Manchester, and connections with his fellow Irishmen are proving to be particularly advantageous in spying on Fenian activity. When a long-lost nephew returns from America and arrives on O'Connor's doorstep looking for work, O'Connor cannot foresee the way his fragile new life will be imperiled--and how his and Doyle's fates will be intertwined. In an epic tale of revenge and obsession, master storyteller Ian McGuire once again transports readers to a time when blood begot blood. Moving from the gritty streets of Manchester to the rolling hills of Pennsylvania, The Abstainer is a searing novel in which two men, motivated by family, honor and revenge, must fight for life and legacy"-- Provided by publisher.
Publisher: New York : Random House, [2020]
Edition: First edition.
ISBN: 9780593133873
Branch Call Number: FIC MCGUIRE, I.
Characteristics: 307 pages ; 25 cm


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Jan 15, 2021

Grim as a bullet in the belly.

Dec 12, 2020

Yet another novel drawing on Irish Republican struggles. It carried me along but in the end seemed to be "the same narrative" reworked yet again. Roddy Doyle did it better.

Nov 19, 2020

I was enjoying this dark but very well-written book -- until the final chapter. It felt as if the author had suddenly decided to let someone else finish his novel for him. An abrupt change of theme and of tone, with no satisfaction for this reader in what felt like an entirely wrong ending.


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