Friday 15 May 2015

Book Review - Pride by Jonathan Hill

Jonathan Hill is one of a select group of authors who entices me from my comfort zone of mostly genre fiction with carefully crafted writing and rich characterisation. Whether it be a strange old lady, boys at a boarding school or this latest tale - he hasn't failed to entrance and entertain. After his debut full length novel last year I had high expectations from this latest release and I wasn't disappointed. I don't think it's as stand out as that novel, but it it is still a fine read.

The interesting aspect of the story for me is that it means different things depending on the reader. For me the experiences in the book aren't ones I have encountered, while for others there will be familiar elements that they can compare with their own experience.

The story follows two timelines, the first is Liam as a youth and him attempting to come to terms with his sexuality. Now this can be an emotive subject and in some books come across as quite confrontational or preachy. This isn't the case with Pride, so doesn't act as a barrier to understanding what this man is experiencing. The other perspective is from him as an older man with more wisdom under his belt and provides contrast to his younger self.

As with all of the author's works the writing is exemplary. There is a gentle humour evident as well and together they make this an easy read even while tackling serious topics. I'd recommend this even if it doesn't seem like your type of read as it is quite likely to surprise you.

Click on image to buy from Amazon

“Where are you going, Liam? You're always going somewhere. I feel as if I don’t know you anymore.”

“I told you, Mum, I’m going for a pizza then seeing a film with a friend.”

But Liam is not having pizza or seeing a film; he’s going to his first Gay Pride march.

Liam has always felt different in a way he couldn’t quite pinpoint… until now. He’s been a caterpillar all his life and his parents want him to stay that way. But Liam wants to be a butterfly.

A tender, funny and moving novella from critically-acclaimed author Jonathan Hill.

Click here to buy Pride from Amazon (and it's a wonderful read)

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