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Boy By James Hanley


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Narrated in unflinching language that is both visceral and acute in its observational power, Boy is a shocking book that stays in the mind long after it is read.

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Boy Summary

Boy by James Hanley

Acclaimed by luminaries such as William Faulkner, suppressed for more than fifty years by a prosecution for obscenity, James Hanley's 1930s classic charts the short and brutish life of a boy forced out of school and into the unforgiving world of work. Escape - in the form of stowing away on a ship - only deepens his exposure to the squalor and brutality that men are capable of, and when he arrives in Alexandria he learns there are some things that one can't run away from.

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Boy Reviews

'The story is quite shattering in its impact.' The Independent 'Powerful and moving - Hanley's brilliance is to shock us whatever our level of sophistication... The reader's consciousness is seared by the experience.' Evening Standard 'A message in a dirty bottle from the days when it was brave to be dirty.' Literary Review 'A powerful account of a working-class boy's loss of moral and sexual innocence.' London Review of Books

About James Hanley

Born in Liverpool to Irish immigrants, James Hanley left school at an early age to become a sailor. His experiences at sea informed many of his works, including Boy, a novel so controversial that it was only published in a limited, expurgated edition, and subsequently tried for obscenity. Unfairly neglected during his lifetime, only recently has this original, uncompromising novelist started to be reappraised as one of the finest English writers of the twentieth century.

Additional information

Boy by James Hanley
James Hanley
Used - Very Good
Alma Books Ltd
Book picture is for illustrative purposes only, actual binding, cover or edition may vary.
This is a used book - there is no escaping the fact it has been read by someone else and it will show signs of wear and previous use. Overall we expect it to be in very good condition, but if you are not entirely satisfied please get in touch with us.