July: The Heart’s Invisible Furies by John Boyne

Why should you read this book?

The Heart’s Invisible Furies by John Boyne is the recipient of an award for standout storytelling and it definitely deserves that honor. This book is extraordinary and it has become one of my favorite contemporary novels. 

In the 1940’s, Catherine Goggin is sixteen, pregnant and alone in an Irish small village. The priest forces her to leave her hometown and she departs to Dublin in search of her new life. She has no choice but to give the child to a new family who’ll be able to provide a better life.

The child is Cyril Avery, our main character. Adopted as a baby, he’s never quite felt at home with the family that treats him more as a curious pet than a son. His adoptive father is a tax evader and his adoptive mother is Maude Avery, a famous and talented writer. Cyril realizes very early in his life that he’s gay in an extremely religious and traditional country. And so begins one man’s desperate search to find his place in the world.

From Dublin, to Holland and to New York, from the 1940’s to our days, The Heart’s Invisible Furies is essentially a book about self-discovery. John Boyne is also a captivating, sarcastic and extremely talented storyteller. I loved his humor and Cyril will be on my mind forever. His detachment and sagacity are unforgettable. So rare to find a writer like Boyne! I highly recommend this book!

I’d like to thank Riverhead Books for sending a review copy. You can buy the book here.

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Summary:

From the beloved New York Times bestselling author of The Boy In the Striped Pajamas, a sweeping, heartfelt saga about the course of one man’s life, beginning and ending in post-war Ireland Cyril Avery is not a real Avery — or at least, that’s what his adoptive parents tell him. And he never will be. But if he isn’t a real Avery, then who is he? Born out of wedlock to a teenage girl cast out from her rural Irish community and adopted by a well-to-do if eccentric Dublin couple via the intervention of a hunchbacked Redemptorist nun, Cyril is adrift in the world, anchored only tenuously by his heartfelt friendship with the infinitely more glamourous and dangerous Julian Woodbead. At the mercy of fortune and coincidence, he will spend a lifetime coming to know himself and where he came from – and over his many years, will struggle to discover an identity, a home, a country, and much more. In this, Boyne’s most transcendent work to date, we are shown the story of Ireland from the 1940s to today through the eyes of one ordinary man. The Heart’s Invisible Furies is a novel to make you laugh and cry while reminding us all of the redemptive power of the human spirit.

Book details:
Publisher: Hogarth (Penguin Random House)
Published on: March 2018
Format: Paperback
Pages: 592

5stars