The Glorious Heresies: Winner of the Baileys' Women's Prize for Fiction 2016
By Lisa McInerney
We all do stupid things when we’re kids.
Ryan Cusack’s grown up faster than most – being the oldest of six with a dead mum and an alcoholic dad will do that for you.
And nobody says Ryan’s stupid. Not even behind his back.
It’s the people around him who are the problem. The gangland boss using his dad as a ‘cleaner’. The neighbour who says she’s trying to help but maybe wants something more than that. The prostitute searching for the man she never knew she’d miss until he disappeared without trace one night . . .
The only one on Ryan’s side is his girlfriend Karine. If he blows that, he’s all alone.
But the truth is, you don’t know your own strength till you need it.Tweet
Helen from Issie's Book Group writes:
What a rollicking rollercoaster ride through some of the darkest places in Cork! This book made me laugh, wince and cry. The writing was lyrical and somehow fast-paced too. The characters jumped off the page right away, from the dour murderess Maureen to the gorgeous lost soul Ryan and everyone in between. Georgie's story in particular was haunting; Lisa McInerney hides nothing in her descriptions of the squalor, shame and danger of prostitution and drug addiction, and yet still manages to deliver humanity and dignity to her characters. You want them to succeed, or at the very least escape. A frightening portrayal of modern Cork and yet narrated with such humour and care that you find yourself believing, against all odds, that things will improve.
I loved it - couldn't put it down - and it is not a book I necessarily would have chosen
We always give our books marks out of 20 and sum them up with one word so my mark is 16 and my word is Riotous
Wow - what a great and powerful novel! An unflinching look at the grubby underbelly of Ireland, featuring a cast of characters you will both pity, blame and cheer for. Unforgiving and unapologetic, visceral, funny, and deeply sad at times, a great read.