Returning to Belfast after a long absence, to attend her father's funeral, Catherine McKenna - a young composer - remembers exactly why she left; the claustrophobic intimacies of the Catholic enclave, her fastidious, nagging mother, and the pervading tensions of a city at war with itself. She remembers a more innocent time, when the Loyalists' Lambeg drums sounded mysterious and exciting; she remembers her shattered relationship with the drunken, violent Dave; she remembers the child she had with him, waiting back in Glasgow. A novel about coming to terms with the past, and the healing power of music, GRACE NOTES is a master story-teller's triumphant return to the long form: a powerful lyrical novel of great distinction.
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Composer Catherine McKenna has more of a gift for music than happiness, but she has long been driven beyond harmonies (musical and personal) that her Belfast family can understand. Bernard MacLaverty renders both sides of the equation: Catherine's feminist and aesthetic striving and her mother's more traditional grasp; it's hard not to sympathize with Mrs. McKenna's impatient rejoinder, "You don't cope with music, you listen to it."
Grace Notes, MacLaverty's first novel since Cal, is as much about Irish identity--and possibility--as it is about art. Catherine's newest piece, a mass, includes the huge drums Protestants play in parades. "It was a scary sound--like thunder. Like the town was under a canopy of dark noise." Though her fellow Catholics see the drums as instruments of threat, Catherine is determined to integrate them into her composition.
Her return to Belfast for her father's funeral brings back several ghosts, among them an influential professor who spoke of grace notes--"the notes between the notes." This novel is full of such instances, wry snatches of conversation and unforgettable observations: the new Chinese restaurant that has had to offer chips to stay in business, or the pub that's "on a slight hill. When dogs pissed at the door the dark lines ran diagonally to the gutter." These transcend the occasional passage in which MacLaverty tries too hard to see into the life and rhythms of a female artist. The final section, however, a live radio concert of Catherine's piece, is a triumph for both woman composer and male author.About the Author:
Bernard MacLaverty is the author of the novels Lamb, Cal and several short story collections including Walking the Dog. A Native of Northern Ireland, he now lives in Glasgow.
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Descripción Random House UK, 1997. Hardcover. Estado de conservación: New. book. Nº de ref. de la librería M022404429X
Descripción Random House UK, 1997. Hardcover. Estado de conservación: New. Nº de ref. de la librería DADAX022404429X
Descripción Jonathan Cape Ltd. Hardcover. Estado de conservación: Brand New. In Stock. Nº de ref. de la librería zk022404429X
Descripción Random House UK, 1997. Hardcover. Estado de conservación: New. Never used!. Nº de ref. de la librería P11022404429X