Close to Home
Author: Michael Magee
While growing up in West Belfast, Sean does everything he's supposed to do. He works hard, he studies, and he - mostly - stays out of trouble. The thirty-year conflict is over, he's told, and his future is lit with promise.
But when Sean returns home from university, he finds much of the same-the same friends doing the same gear in the same clubs; the same lost brothers and mad fathers; the same closed doors; the same silences. There are no jobs, Sean's degree isn't worth the paper it's written on, and no one will give him the time of day. One night, he assaults a stranger at a party, and everything begins to come undone.
Close to Home begins with this sudden act of violence and expands into a startling portrait of working-class Ireland under the long shadow of the Troubles. It's a first novel drawn from life, written with the immediacy of thought. It's about what happens when men get desperate, about the cycles of loss and trauma and secrecy that keep them trapped, and about the struggle to get free.
Farrar, Straus and Giroux