The Mary Smokes Boys - Patrick Holland

The Mary Smokes Boys

By: Patrick Holland

Paperback | 31 August 2010

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Grey's mother dies giving birth to his sister Irene and the tragedy haunts his life in the small town of Mary Smokes. Grey prays that his mother will be returned to him in some form, so he might protect her from the world as his father did not. This prayer, Grey believes is answered in his sister Irene. He becomes obsessed with protecting her purity and innocence.

Also with his mother gone and his father turned to drink, Grey begins running with the wild boys, horse-handlers and fox hunters and part-time timber workers - members of a small, vanishing tribe who find themselves caught between an old relationship with place and a new one that is exemplified by the highway that threatens their town. A rash gamble by Grey and Irene's broken father means he and the Mary Smokes boys must steal horses to ensure Irene's safety.

The consequences seem set to fall on Greys' closest friend, Ook' Eccleston. As Grey's, Eccleston's and Irene's lives are put at stake his allegiances falter and the world of Mary Smokes slips into a heightened state of darkness and threat.With the passion of Emily Bronte in Wuthering Heights and the distilled beauty of Ondaatje Patrick Holland captures the fragility and grace of small town life and how one fateful moment can forever alter the course of our lives.

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