“O’Connor’s lilting prose beautifies his tale [as he] tackles a serious theme of forlornness with sincerity, buoyancy, and wit.” —Kirkus Reviews
All families have secrets. Most go untold …
In the summer of ’96, Benjamin Hackett has come of age, technically. And in the midst of the celebratory hangover, his world is whipped out from under his feet. His parents have finally shared their lifelong secret with him; he’s adopted.
At the age of eighteen, the boy still has some growing up to do, and with the help of JJ, his loquacious consigliore and bodyguard, he embarks on an adventure that’ll put to bed a lifetime of lies.
Over the course of five days, they find themselves caught up in the darker side of Cork. But when they sweep through the misfits blocking their way and finally discover the truth of it … now that’s the greatest shock of all.
The Origins of Benjamin Hackett is a tender tale of heartache and displacement told through a wry and courageous voice. Set in Ireland, it’s a timely reminder that the world hasn’t moved on just as fast as we fancy. Now, in this emotionally charged story, Gerald O’Connor explores conditioned guilt and its consequences in a country still hiding from the sins of its past.
Praise for THE ORIGINS OF BENJAMIN HACKETT
“The Origins of Benjamin Hackett by Gerald O’Connor is a raucous and riotous coming of age story that is brutal, tender and hilarious.” — Paul D. Brazill, author of A Case of Noir and Guns of Brixton
“O’Connor doles out killer dialogue that adds oodles of character to this hero’s journey. Told with the lilt and panache of Joseph O’Connor and Dermot Bolger in their novels of the ’90s, Gerald O’Connor is the new and improved voice we’ve been waiting for.” — Gerard Brennan, author of Undercover and Wee Rockets
“Visceral writing that inherits a long Irish tradition. O’Connor’s narrative contains sharp characterisation, and has an assured voice, while dramatising conditioned guilt with humour and style.” — Richard Godwin, author of Apostle Rising, Mr. Glamour and One Lost Summer and others
“If you’re expecting the usual coming-of-age tale, you’re in for a big shock. This is a tale big on heart and one which the author, Gerald O’Connor, has hied religiously to the advice of Harry Crews for writers, to ‘leave out the parts readers skip.’ None of those parts remain in these pages. An auspicious debut!” — Les Edgerton, author of The Death of Tarpons, The Bitch, The Genuine, Imitation, Plastic Kidnapping, Bomb, and others