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Mayflies: A Novel av Andrew O'Hagan

Mayflies: A Novel (urspr publ 2020; utgåvan 2021)

av Andrew O'Hagan (Författare)

MedlemmarRecensionerPopularitetGenomsnittligt betygOmnämnanden
13610160,952 (4.26)6
Titel:Mayflies: A Novel
Författare:Andrew O'Hagan (Författare)
Info:McClelland & Stewart (2021), 284 pages
Samlingar:Ditt bibliotek


Mayflies av Andrew O'Hagan (2020)


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Visa 1-5 av 10 (nästa | visa alla)
Beautiful and heartbreaking, human, political, and suffused with the music and films of my youth. The book starts in the 80's when Manchester was celebrating ten years at the heart of the music scene for smart and discerning post-punk music geeks. Its a good thing it starts with all the fun of 80's era sex and drugs and rock and roll because this book gets HEAVY. I don't want to spoil anything so I will just say it is about true friendship (male friendship here, with hallmarks slightly differnt than those for women), those people for whom you would do anything. I confess I missed some of the political references being a Yank and all, but I got most, and I think most people with a minimally serviceable understanding of the horrors of Thatcher's UK will as well. The film and music references were a blast. I knew I was hooked when the boys argued about what instrument Karl Marx would play if he were in The Fall. (It's a glockenspiel according to the book, but I lean maracas myself.) I was so charmed I even forgave O'Hagan for dissing Orchestral Maneuvers in the Dark, a band I loved at the time (though that love has, admittedly, dimmed.) I did think in the first half things spun off on tangents on occasion, but this was a 4.5 for me. ( )
  Narshkite | Sep 23, 2021 |
Just superb.
Opening in 1986, the narrator recalls his working class teens in Scotland- dead-end jobs versus education..that golden period on the cusp of adulthood...disparaging the oldies ..and taking off for a weekend in Manchester, watching gigs and having a wild time with his mates. The charismatic one is unquestionably Tully Dawson. This just came alive for me, taking me back to that time in my own life...the possibilities, the glitz, the laughter.
"They say you know nothing at eighteen. But there are things you know at eighteen that you will never know again.Morrissey would lose his youth, and not just his youth, but the gusto that took him across the stage with a banner saying "The Queen is Dead" is a thing of permanence. We didn't know it at the time, but it was also, for all of us, a tender goodbye, and we would never be those people again."

Part two is in 2017. Now in their 50s, James and Tully are a writer and a teacher, married, successful. They stay in touch, they have little glimpses of their teen selves. And then Tully is diagnosed with terminal cancer...

Superb. Every word resonated. ( )
  starbox | Sep 14, 2021 |
Mayflies by Andrew O’Hagan is a literary fiction novel in two parts.The first part is a coming-of-age story of a group of young Scottish men who head to Manchester for a punk rock concert.. Te prose and pacing moves with all the joy, exuberance, angst and passion of youth fueled by drugs and the love of the big city and the music. Butthere is also about the sense of an ending - of the freedom of childhood, of friendships long established, and driven by the fear and hope for new beginnings. I read this first part without once stopping or coming up for air.

The second part starts thirty years ago. The friends have all moved on and, although some of them have maintained their relationships especially Jimmy and Tully, their lives now revolve around careers, marriage, and, yes, loss. This part moves at a much slower albeit just as compelling pace. It is quieter, the prose much less frenetic, more mature, less punk more classical music, and much sadder. Just as Manchester is the end of childhood and the beginning of adulthooda trip first to Sicily followed by a trip to Switzerland connotes an end to their story but never the end of friendship. It is a story of loss but it never descends into manipulation and melodrama- it is a proud ending to a life well lived. This part I read slower, stopping to absorb what I was reading,

Mayflies is a beautifully written story, at times almost lyrical, of a life lived to its fullest and, although I finished it a few days ago, it has taken me a while to try to express how I felt and I’m still not sure I have. This is the kind of book that I know I will read again and again, always wishing for more but knowing it’s enough, the kind of book tat reminds me why I read. ( )
  lostinalibrary | May 18, 2021 |
The book is divided into two parts, separated by roughly thirty years. The book starts out strong and we get to know James and Fully, but then descends into a self indulgent weekend in Manchester. Music,alcohol, drugs are prevalent and I didn't care for this section at all. In fact, if this wasn't a read with Angela and Esil, I might have put the book down. DON'T! The second section is remarkable and why this weekend in Manchester was so important is soon revealed.

The second part takes a tragic turn and begs the question of just how much can we ask our friends? Make our own decisions even if someone else close to us doesn't agree and is hurt by the request? When do we say enough is enough? The book turns into a book of a wonderful friendship, a closeness that supercedes all requests no matter how difficult. It is so different from the first part, even the way it is written but I'm so glad I didn't quit reading. It encompasses the full tragedy of lives fully lived.

ARC from Netgalley. ( )
  Beamis12 | May 11, 2021 |
Ay well, I was probably going to give 5 stars anyway to any author who so clearly loved The Shop Assistants as much as I did (check their one and only LP still sounds glorious today) . And the first half of the book, where a group of lads go out on an epic lash in Manchester, when bands meant something, and being pissed up, speeded up, sleeping in alleys and astounded when a girl might kiss you, felt that like art and certainly profound, and certainly a level of consciousness that the work a day "qualified" proles just couldn't understand. In 1986 Steven Morrissey and The Smiths were cut from this cloth; it was a moment, a moment that even 5 years later felt old and stale, and now god help him. But in the moment, that moment was raptourous and the beginning section of this book gets this absolutely right

Fast forward 30 years and the second half of the book is much more sombre. Now, Jimmy's best friend Tully is dying and decisions have to be made as how best to go out . Friendship makes deeper calls than anyone thought it would and the last 30 pages of this are heartbreaking. Highly recommended ( )
1 rösta Opinionated | Apr 13, 2021 |
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Tully Dawson made himself new to the world, and ripe for the glories of that summer, by showeing he was unlike his father.
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