Solar Bones by Mike McCormack book review



the Angelus bell
ringing out over its villages and townlands,
over the fields and hills and bogs in between,
six chimes of three across a minute and a half,
a summons struck
on the lip of the void

Once a year, on All Souls’ Day, it is said in Ireland that the dead may return. Solar Bones is the story of one such visit. Marcus Conway, a middle-aged engineer, turns up one afternoon at his kitchen table and considers the events that took him away and then brought him home again. Funny and strange, McCormack’s ambitious and other-worldly novel plays with form and defies convention. This is profound new work is by one of Ireland’s most important contemporary novelists. A beautiful and haunting elegy, this story of order and chaos, love and loss captures how minor decisions ripple into waves and test our integrity every day.


SO…. This book is a bit different as well. I thoroughly enjoyed reading this as it has beautiful narrative. The book flows with the character’s thoughts as you go from one thought to the next without stopping. This book is written in line breaks and one LONG sentence. I feel it was necessary for the story as it gave it more oomph. While reading the synopsis of the book I thought this would be a tad different than what I ended up reading. However what I did read was different for all the right reasons as I was drawn into the character’s mind as I saw into his life and who he is/was as a person. As I came to the conclusion of this book I was glad I went into this book blind as I’ve noticed tons of spoilers out there. If you pay close enough attention to the blurb for this book you are given away the ending (which still shook me). After reading author interviews I learned this book goes so much deeper than I thought. The author had actually mentioned he wanted to give away the ending due him not wanting it to feel cheap. While I love huge surprise endings as such, I can see how it did benefit the book to have given away such. The writing style is commendable and I could not tear myself from this book. There is such a poeticness to the voice behind this book. The premise of this book kept me reading on. The way the book flows was absolutely beautiful and I loved every word of it. This should have gotten a lot more notice I believe but I think the issue was the writing style. So, again take this book for what it is and go into it blind and let it flow though you and see the deeper meanings. Truly an author to keep on your shelf. 5 stars from me. I received this book from SoHo Teen in exchange for my open and honest review.



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