M. J. Hyland is the multi-award-winning and Man Booker-shortlisted author of Carry Me Down. Her third novel, This Is How, is a psychologically probing and deeply moving account of a perpetual outsider longing to find his niche. When Patrick Oxtoby’s fiancée breaks off their engagement, he leaves home and moves to a remote seaside village. In spite of his hopes for a new and better life, Patrick struggles to fit in and make the right impression. Certain that his new friends are conspiring against him, and with his already fragile personality further fractured, he takes a course of action that permanently alters his life.
This Is How is a mesmerizing and meticulously drawn portrait of a man whose unease in the world leads to his tragic undoing. With breathtaking wisdom and astute insight into the human mind, Hyland’s latest is a masterpiece that arouses horror and sympathy in equal measure.
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"I want his friendship," Patrick realises, "but I don't want the hot and cold threat of it all," just as his tangled attitude to his easy-going mother - a beautifully drawn, tender portrait of doomed family love - encompasses both social shame and social jealousy.Jun 26 2009 | Read Full Review of This is How
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