Search-icon

The Butcher Boy

By

Paperback published by Delta (Random House Publishing Group)

Larger Image
10 Ratings. What's Yours?
Histogram_reset_icon
(6 REVIEWS)
ADD TO MY SHELF
About This Book
"When I was a young lad twenty or thirty or forty years ago I lived in a small town where they were all after me on account of what I done on Mrs. Nugent."

Thus begins Patrick McCabe's shattering novel The Butcher Boy, a powerful and unrelenting journey into the heart of darkness. The bleak, eerie voice belongs to Francie Brady, the "pig boy," the only child of and alcoholic father and a mother driven mad by despair. Growing up in a soul-stifling Irish town, Francie is bright, love-starved, and unhinged, his speech filled with street talk, his heart filled with pain...his actions perfectly monstrous.

Held up for scorn by Mrs. Nugent, a paragon of middle-class values, and dropped by his best friend, Joe, in favor of her mamby-pamby son, Francie finally has a target for his rage--and a focus for his twisted, horrific plan.

Dark, haunting, often screamingly funny, The Butcher Boy chronicles the pig boy's ominous loss of innocence and chilling descent into madness. No writer since James Joyce has had such marvelous control of rhythm and language... and no novel since The Silence Of The Lambs has stunned us with such a macabre, dangerous mind.
Show less
"When I was a young lad twenty or thirty or forty years ago I lived in a small town where they were all after me on account of what I done on Mrs. Nugent."

Thus begins Patrick McCabe's shattering novel The Butcher Boy, a powerful and unrelenting journey into the heart of darkness. The bleak, eerie voice belongs to Francie Brady, the "pig boy," the only child of and alcoholic father and a mother driven mad by despair. Growing up in a soul-stifling Irish town, Francie is bright, love-starved, and unhinged, his speech filled with street talk, his heart filled with pain...his actions perfectly monstrous.

Held up for scorn by Mrs. Nugent, a paragon of middle-class values, and dropped by his best friend, Joe, in favor of her mamby-pamby son, Francie finally has a target for his rage--and a focus for his twisted, horrific plan.

Dark, haunting, often screamingly funny, The Butcher Boy chronicles the pig boy's ominous loss of innocence and chilling descent into madness. No writer since James Joyce has had such marvelous control of rhythm and language... and no novel since The Silence Of The Lambs has stunned us with such a macabre, dangerous mind.
Product Details
Paperback (240 pages)
Published: August 1, 1994
Publisher: Random House Publishing Group
Imprint: Delta
ISBN: 9780385312370
Other books byPatrick McCabe
  • Mondo Desperado

    Mondo Desperado
    A Serial Novel
    Patrick McCabe has long been recognized as a writer of rare talent and unique voice, whose vision of the world is so distinctive that "McCabesque" has become an adjective with multiple meanings, including "exquisitely, beautifully, mad in the head!" He was a Booker Prize finalist for The Butcher Boy, which won the Irish Times Aer Lingus/Irish Literature Prize for Fiction and was made into a motion picture directed by Neil Jordan and cowritten by McCabe and Jordan. He was again a Booker Prize finalist for Breakfast on Pluto, which won the Spirit of Life Arts/Sunday Independent Irish Literature Award and was a number one international bestseller. McCabe has been described as "the lodestone of new Irish fiction" (Wall Street Journal), "a dark. genius of incongruity and the grotesque" (Sunday Observer) and "one of Ireland's finest living writers" (New York Times Book Review). The Minneapolis Star-Tribune commented on McCabe's "remarkable...ability to induce compassion for the unlikeliest people," and in Mondo Desperado: A Serial Novel, that ability and the full range of his "grotesque genius" (Marie Claire) combine to produce a brilliant, macabre' dementedly funny and surreally imagined fiction of intertwined narratives set in a small Irish town. McCabe himself has described Mondo Desperado as being "like Sherwood Anderson's Winesburg, Ohio -- on drugs." In his mondo tales of the insular town of Barntrosna, McCabe assembles a distinctly Irish crew of odd and unusual inhabitants who live on and regularly cross, often unconsciously, the border between fantasy and reality. In "Hot Nights at the Go-Go Lounge," Larry Bunyan is certain his demure wife is secretly out at night with deadbeat swingers, shooting drugs and having wild sex, while in "I Ordained the Devil," the Bishop of Barntrosna confesses that his ordination of Father Packie Cooley was really an ordination of His Satanic Majesty. Another Barntrosna resident, Dr. John Joe Parkes, discovers "The Valley of the Flying Jennets," the secret place in the mountains created by his Dr. Frankenstein -- type medical ancestor where his horrible, mutated genetic failures live. In the concluding "Forbidden Love of Noreen Tiernan," Noreen escapes Barntrosna, goes to London for nursing school, finds a lesbian lover, and teams up with her to rob and terrorize London until her mother, boyfriend and parish priest bring Noreen back home. With sly wit, characteristic, brilliant blending of sadness and humor and macabre genius, Mondo Desperado is a wonderfully imagined work of fiction -- McCabe's most dazzling yet -- rom a truly original literary talent.

    Call Me the Breeze

    Call Me the Breeze
    With T. S. Eliot's words as his guide, Joey Tallon embarks on a journey toward enlightenment in the troubling psychedelic-gone-wrong atmosphere of the late 1970s. A man deranged by desire, and longing for belonging, Tallon searches for his"place of peace" -- a spiritual landscape located somewhere between his small town in Northern Ireland and Iowa ... and maybe between heaven and hell.

    Emerald Germs Of Ireland

    Emerald Germs Of Ireland
    "There is something special about the relationship we all have with our mothers . . . " Meet Pat McNab, forty-five years old, and about to embark on a homicidal rampage sparked by matricide. Or is he? Pat spent endless hours chain-smoking and propping up the counter of Sullivan's Select Bar (not that Mrs. McNab knew anything about it—she and Timmy the barman didn't get along at all) or sitting on his mother's knee singing away together like some ridiculous two-headed human jukebox. But that was all before the story really began—Emerald Germs of Ireland is in essence Pat McNab's post-matricide year. Pat, who now spends many of his waking hours sitting by the window in his old dark house, watching videos and nibbling abstractedly on pieces of toast, reflects on those long-gone days with Mommy, while fending off the persistent interferences of his small-town neighbors: the puritanical Mrs. Tubridy; that irascible seller of turf, the Turf Man; Sgt. "Kojak" Foley, and other unwanted snoops who could soon come to regret their inquisitive, nose-poking ways. This is Patrick McCabe at his fiendish best. Dark, emotionally powerful, and surreal, Emerald Germs of Ireland is also his funniest work to date, masterfully displaying the anarchic twists and turns that are the hallmarks of his comic genius.

    Breakfast on Pluto tie-in

    Breakfast on Pluto tie-in
    Conceived in a moment of mad passion by a randy Irish priest and his temporary housekeeper -- and abandoned on a doorstep in a Rinso box as an infant -- her ladyship "Pussy" (né Patrick) Braden grew up fabulous and escaped tiny Tyreelin, Ireland, to start life anew in London. In blousy tops and satin miniskirts she plies her trade as a transvestite rent boy on Picadilly's Meat Rack, risking life and limb among the city's flotsam and jetsam. But it is the 1970s, and fear haunts the streets of London and Belfast -- and as radioactive history approaches critical mass, the coming explosion of violence and tragedy may well blow Pussy's fragile soul asunder.

Favorite QuotesFROM THIS BOOK
  • When I was a young lad twenty or thirty or forty years ago I lived in a small town where they were all after me on account of what I done on Mrs Nugent.

    — submitted by Flag This Quote For Review
  • I was thinking about Mrs. Nugent standing their crying.

    — submitted by Flag This Quote For Review
Quote Cannot be Empty

Submitted quotes are usually posted within 48 hours

ThanksYour Quote Will be posted Shortly
Bookish