The Convictions of John Delahunt by Andrew Hughes
A Novel

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The Convictions of John Delahunt is best compared to Truman Capote’s In Cold Blood...Hughes fictionalizes John Delahunt’s “background, character, and family.” Capote’s information about his murderers comes from multiple interviews and a study of their records, but both books provide the same sense of immediacy...
-NY Journal of Books

Synopsis

Beautifully observed, seductive, and laced with dark humor, a gripping historical thriller — set in 1840s Dublin — about a man who betrays his family, his friends, his society and, ultimately, himself.


Dublin, 1841. On a cold December morning, a small boy is enticed away from his mother and his throat savagely cut. This could be just one more small, sad death in a city riven by poverty, inequality and political unrest, but this murder causes a public outcry. For it appears the culprit - a feckless student named John Delahunt - is also an informant in the pay of the authorities at Dublin Castle. And strangely, this young man seems neither to regret what he did, nor fear his punishment. Indeed, as he awaits the hangman in his cell in Kilmainham Gaol, John Delahunt decides to tell his story in this, his final, deeply unsettling statement...

Based on true events that convulsed Victorian Ireland, The Convictions of John Delahunt is the tragic tale of a man who betrays his family, his friends, his society and, ultimately, himself. Set amidst Dublin's taverns, tenements, courtrooms, and alleyways and with a rich, Dickensian cast of characters, this enthralling, at times darkly humorous novel brilliantly evokes a time and a place, and introduces a remarkable new literary voice.

 

About Andrew Hughes

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Born in Ireland, Andrew Hughes was educated at Trinity College, Dublin. It was while researching his acclaimed social history of Fitzwilliam Square - Lives Less Ordinary: Dublin's Fitzwilliam Square, 1798-1922 - that he first came across the true story of John Delahunt that inspired his debut novel. Andrew lives in Dublin.
 
Published June 15, 2015 by Pegasus Books. 347 pages
Genres: History, Mystery, Thriller & Suspense, Literature & Fiction. Fiction
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Critic reviews for The Convictions of John Delahunt
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Kirkus

Above average
on Apr 02 2015

Debut novelist Hughes imagines the circumstances leading up to the Victorian-era real-life hanging of John Delahunt, a convicted Irish child-murderer...A Kafkaesque study of an amoral weakling consumed by an unrestrained bureaucracy.

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NY Journal of Books

Above average
Reviewed by D. R. Meredith on Jun 14 2015

The Convictions of John Delahunt is best compared to Truman Capote’s In Cold Blood...Hughes fictionalizes John Delahunt’s “background, character, and family.” Capote’s information about his murderers comes from multiple interviews and a study of their records, but both books provide the same sense of immediacy...

Read Full Review of The Convictions of John Delah... | See more reviews from NY Journal of Books

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