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Paperback Shuggie Bain
Publication year: 2021
Publisher: Picador, 2021
Resource type: Physical
ISBN: 152901929X 9781529019292
Originally published: New York: Grove Press, 2020
Glasgow is dying and good families must grift to survive. Agnes Bain has always expected more from life. She dreams of greater things: a house with its own front door and a life bought and paid for outright (like her perfect, but false, teeth). But Agnes is abandoned by her philandering husband, and soon she and her three children find themselves trapped in a decimated mining town. As she descends deeper into drink, the children try their best to save her, yet one by one they must abandon her to save themselves. It is her son Shuggie who holds out hope the longest. Shuggie is different. Fastidious and fussy, he shares his mother's sense of snobbish propriety. The miners' children pick on him and adults condemn him as no' right. But Shuggie believes that if he tries his hardest, he can be normal like the other boys and help his mother escape this hopeless place. Douglas Stuart's Shuggie Bain lays bare the ruthlessness of poverty, the limits of love, and the hollowness of pride.
I've been living with Shuggie and his little family over many years in various places in Glasgow. Now I'm away from his fictional life all I want to do is talk about it. I think about them in the morning and before I go to sleep. Shuggie Bain is raw, brutal yet beautiful and illustrates how childhood can shape or break us. It brought to mind Rohinton Mistri's, A Fine Balance, in that it takes you on a journey between hope and despair. I loved the characters, the writing, and the empathy and honesty of Douglas Stuart.
Titles by same author
Resource type: Electronic material
1 online resource (ebook)
A harrowing read but shows the difficulties of impoverished communities and how the effects of pover