Hellfire by Mia Gallagher

Hellfire

Mia Gallagher

Possibly one of the most disturbing but yet gripping and powerful books I've read for a long time. Set in Dublin, the story evolves around young Lucy Dolan, her family and her relationship with Nayler, a friend of her brother. We live Lucy's life through her eyes and thoughts (the novel is written in the first person using colloquial speech) and subject matter of drugs, murder and family abuse does made me think how easy my life was whilst growing up. What is sad about this book is that despite being written from the 1960s onwards, so many of the social problems encountered then still exist in today's society. However, at the beginning of the book, there are some humorous passages, but these are few and far between. Not always easy - but well worth the effort.

Extract

I stay cold as ice in the bee-baw and for a while down at the station, when that stupid cunt from the Social keeps asking me what's up, don't I know what I've done, this is serious, I coulda hurt someone, I should thank me stars I'm the age I am but I should definitely wise up, if I don't cop on now, I'm heading for disaster. All that I can take. Nothin new there. But when she grabs me and tries to turn me round ta look at her, I go loco. I lash out at her with me fists, flingin her against the wall. I throw chairs. I turn a table upside down. I scream. I am sick. I know this. I am fuckin sick. I am from a sick family. I am sick in the head. I am mad. They want me mad, they'll get mad. I am fuckin mad.

Two nights later I set fire ta me classroom.

The flames rise. I throw the empty petrol can on the heap and scream like a banshee, like mad Buck Whaley on his crazy horse Starlight, like me, Lucy Dolan, Lucy Lu Madser Dolan.

Parallels
  • Trainspotting by Irvine Welsh
  • Reservoir Dogs - the film

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