Just in time for St. Patrick’s Day (March 17, for those who have trouble keeping track), when everybody pretends to be Irish, a new book, set in the rural Irish countryside and filled with the sorts of characters you only find in Ireland, is coming to the Field Library.
Himself by Jess Kidd stars a classic rogue: a charmer and car thief by the name of Mahony who was found on the steps of an orphanage as a baby, and grew up in Dublin always believing that his mother, whom he never knew, gave him up voluntarily. But then one day he receives an anonymous letter that suggests his mother might have been the victim of foul play and his abandonment might not have been quite as voluntary as he’d assumed.
What else can he do? He heads back to Mulderrig, the rural village of his birth, determined to get to the bottom of these allegations. Naturally, his arrival in the village stirs up all kinds of trouble, because naturally there are secrets galore kept by the people who knew Mahony’s mother. Since he’s still a stranger to the town, Mahoney needs the help of an insider to dig into the past. He chooses the one person guaranteed to infuriate both the politically conservative and the pious: Mrs. Cauley, a woman who’s not only a retired actress but an anarchist as well. The investigation takes in the living and the dead (because in Mulderrig the dead can be as chatty as the living), leads to the wrath of the local priest, letter bombs, poisoned scones and the performance of the most controversial play in Irish history (and if you’re familiar with that particular play, you might be imagining certain parallels between its plot and the plot of this book).
Celebrate St. Patrick’s Day this year with a book filled with the natural and the supernatural, mystery and folklore, characters galore and the quintessential Irish wit and love of language: Himself.