Other Free Encyclopedias » Literature Reference: American Literature, English Literature, Classics & Modern Fiction » Books & Authors: Award-Winning Fiction (Mc-Pa)

O'Hagan, Andrew

book scottish hugh

(British, 1968– )

The Booker-shortlisted Our Fathers (1999) gives us three generations of a Scots family: Hugh Bawn, once ‘Mr Housing’ responsible for the tower blocks which swept away Glasgow tenements; his son, Robert, alcoholic, depressed, and abusive; his grandson, Jamie, living in England in a career which undoes everything Hugh tried to achieve. If you've ever wondered what it means to be Scottish, this brooding mix of irony, pathos, bitterness, and hope carries an unmistakable whisky flavour, dark but ultimately warming. The book centres on masculinity but the female characters—Hugh's mother, Famie, who led the first rent strikes, and his quiet wife Margaret—come through strongly. Don't be tempted to rush the pace; this is a book which unfolds its secrets slowly. An extraordinarily powerful first novel.

Personality (2003) relates the life of a Scottish/Italian girl whose singing voice makes her a celebrity. The damage fame brings in its wake is minutely observed, through O'Hagan's vividly realized characters.

Seamus Deane, Colm Tóibín, James Kelman  RV/JR

O'Hara, John [next] [back] O'Flaherty, Liam

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