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Sad Bastard Paperback – Jul 21 1999


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Paperback, Jul 21 1999
CDN$ 12.75

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 193 pages
  • Publisher: Vintage Books; New edition edition (July 21 1999)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 009927499X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0099274995
  • Product Dimensions: 12.9 x 1.5 x 19.9 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 141 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #3,117,124 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

From Publishers Weekly

The eponymous antihero of Hamilton's sequel to Headbanger is once again Pat Coyne, a down-and-out Dublin police officer given to paranoid rantings and delusions of grandeur: "He shouted at the radio, railing against corruption as if it affected him personally. Every change in his country, every sign of progress was an assault on his persona." It hasn't been a good year for Coyne: he has been out of work since an injury during a traumatic fire; he's separated from his wife, Carmel, a New Age healer whose affections he desperately wants to win back; and his son, Jimmy, a young man with "a vocation for pure mayhem," is still living with him. Out on a bender one evening, Jimmy inadvertently steals a bag of money from thug Mongi O Doherty, who then kills Coyne's friend Tommy Nolan when he happens upon the scene. Jimmy becomes a suspect in Tommy's murder, but even worse, he's got Mongi on his tail. Plenty of other characters are thrown into the mix, including the bothersome Sergeant Corrigan, who is investigating the murder; Ms. Dunford, Coyne's platitude-spouting therapist; and Corina, a Romanian woman who owes Mongi money and is befriended by Coyne after she is caught shoplifting. For all Coyne's bluster, there is something sad and vulnerable about him; he is reminiscent of a (slightly) more well-adjusted Ignatius Reilly from A Confederacy of Dunces, as Roddy Doyle might have imagined him. There are plenty of hilarious scenes in this short novel, and Hamilton ties them together skillfully, but audiences will have more fun tracking Coyne's various tribulations if they first read Headbanger, released in the States earlier this year.

Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information, Inc.

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Most helpful customer reviews

By Jeremy Smith on May 20 2000
Format: Paperback
Hugo Hamilton writes with an excellent style. There's plenty of characters in this book, all of them fairly interesting and well-explained. The book reads well, and the overall arc of the plot is like several episodes of a soap-opera. My only complaint is that speech from characters wasn't quoted in quotation marks, it was hyphenated like this:
-Well, that's a nice necklace you're wearing.
But it was fairly funny in places. There's so much going on and it's all so original and well-detailed.
Well done, Hugo.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 2 reviews
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
Not sad at all! May 20 2000
By Jeremy Smith - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
Hugo Hamilton writes with an excellent style. There's plenty of characters in this book, all of them fairly interesting and well-explained. The book reads well, and the overall arc of the plot is like several episodes of a soap-opera. My only complaint is that speech from characters wasn't quoted in quotation marks, it was hyphenated like this:
-Well, that's a nice necklace you're wearing.
But it was fairly funny in places. There's so much going on and it's all so original and well-detailed.
Well done, Hugo.
0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Nowhere Man March 18 2004
By A. Ross - Published on Amazon.com
This book picks up the story of middle-aged Dublin policeman Pay Coyne, who was introduced in Hamilton's book Headbanger. In that earlier tale, Coyne turned from a misunderstood family man into a one man crimebuster, a la Dirty Harry. This book finds him separated from his new-age healer wife, and living in a dingy apartment, wrestling with depression and what sounds like post-traumatic stress following his disability after a quixotic attempt to rescue someone from a fire. Much of his time is spent staring into beers down at a dockside pub, one of the few places he can stand to be around other people. That's where a meager plot develops, revolving around a local thug's scheme of smuggling Eastern Europeans into the country illegally in a fishing vessel. This leads to a murder, a bag of missing cash, and trouble for Cone's wild teenage son. Meanwhile, as in Headbanger, he discovers a young woman who needs protecting-here an inept Romanian shoplifter. None of this is particularly gripping, however. It feels somewhat forced, as if Hamilton knew he needed to have some kind of story to keep readers interested. 'Cause the emphasis seems to be on Coyne's disgust with modern Ireland, as he rants over and over about how awful it all is. He takes on somewhat of the air of a mad prophet in all this, lurching around town, pining for his wife and family. While it's not your average picture of Dublin, it's not a very compelling read either.

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