A Novel

Book - 2015
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A searing novel about longing, intimacy and obsession from the award-winning author of Solace.

When they meet in Dublin in the late nineties, Catherine and James become close as two friends can be. She is a sheltered college student, he an adventurous, charismatic young artist. In a city brimming with possibilities, he spurs her to take life on with gusto. But as Catherine opens herself to new experiences, James's life becomes a prison; as changed as the new Ireland may be, it is still not a place in which he feels able to truly be himself. Catherine, grateful to James and worried for him, desperately wants to help--but as time moves on, and as life begins to take the friends in difference directions, she discovers that there is a perilously fine line between helping someone and hurting him further. When crisis hits, Catherine finds herself at the mercy of feelings she cannot control, leading her to jeopardize all she holds dear.

By turns exhilarating and devastating, Tender is a dazzling exploration of human relationships, of the lies we tell ourselves and the lies we are taught to tell. It is the story of first love and lost innocence, of discovery and betrayal. A tense high-wire act with keen psychological insights, this daring novel confirms Belinda McKeon as a major voice in contemporary fiction, joining the ranks of the masterful Edna O'Brien and Anne Enright.
Publisher: New York :, Little, Brown and Company,, ©2015.
ISBN: 9780316344326
Branch Call Number: FICTION MCK
Characteristics: 405 pages ; 25 cm


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Jun 23, 2017

This is a novel about a straight woman who falls in love with a gay man in late 1990s Dublin. In some ways, the story could have been set several decades in the past. There are references to the Plath-Hughes relationship throughout, although it was difficult to understand what parallels were being drawn. It was difficult to become interested in the story, which was much too long and rather self-indulgent at 400 pages.

Dec 30, 2016

This book is about deep affection that transcends boundaries and genders. It's not a heavily structured story so as a reader I had to somewhat float with the author in her telling the more ethereal quality of love and relationships. For that reason it seemed to lack highs and lows and could have been shortened. For it's quality of writing it's a worthy read.

Nov 15, 2016

I found the choppy writing style incredibly distracting and painful to read. While the plot had potential, the language overwhelmed that interest.

Mar 18, 2016

Excellent book! 5 stars! Couldn't put it down.

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