Related to: 'The Wolf in Winter'

Julie Sarkissian blogs about the problems facing the protagnist of her debut novel, DEAR LUCY

Something's Wrong With Lucy - But What?

Lucy is different – that much is clear. She speaks like a child, doesn’t recognize social boundaries, flies into rages, and treasures rotten food. Her cognition is impaired, her vocabulary is very limited and she cannot read or write. But what – precisely – is wrong with her is left up to the reader. Lucy is the protagonist of my novel, DEAR LUCY, and from the first sentence of the book I ever wrote it was obvious that Lucy was cognitively different. The way Lucy describes herself is as “missing too many words.” Her mother calls her “difficult.” Readers of early drafts of the book had a few theories as to Lucy’s condition; autism, Williams Syndrome, Down Syndrome. But Lucy’s mother has kept her from going to school and Lucy has never seen a doctor. So in the fictional reality of the book there is no official diagnosis. But as the novel progressed I wondered – should I have one? I was torn. If Lucy was presenting enough symptoms to point to a real condition, was I ignoring the obvious not to fold that condition into my development of her character? Was it insensitive of me to allude to aspects of certain real, life-altering conditions but not assign a specific condition to Lucy? I worried about appropriating aspects of serious conditions without treating those conditions with proper respect and acknowledgement. And though any clinical diagnosis would probably not be explicit in the novel, I wondered if I would be ignoring an opportunity to bring attention to a real disorder when people asked me about Lucy’s condition, the way The Curious Incident of The Dog in the Night-time did for autism. On the other hand, I had concerns that if I chose a diagnosis for Lucy, I would be ascribing to her qualities that she wouldn’t have otherwise presented. Lucy had her own will over my writing and over the novel. I didn’t want to yoke Lucy’s expression by keeping her behavior and abilities consistent with a clinical condition. Accuracy would also become a critical issue if Lucy’s condition was named. Ultimately I chose not to diagnose Lucy, though I worry the artistic freedom provided by that decision comes at the price of being judged for being too liberal with my treatment of cognitive disorders. Now that publication is a few months away, I am apprehensive of how my treatment of Lucy’s cognitive limitations will be judged. I have yet to talk to a reader who has a learning different child, or works with learning different people, and that conversation is one I will be honored, and not a bit anxious, to have.

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John Connolly
Authors:
John Connolly

Winner of the 2017 Ryan Tubridy Show Listener's Choice Award at the Irish Book Awards.John Connolly recreates the golden age of Hollywood for an intensely compassionate study of the tension between commercial demands and artistic integrity and the human frailties behind even the greatest of artists.An extraordinary reimagining of the life of one of the greatest screen comedians the world has ever known: a man who knew both adoration and humiliation; who loved, and was loved in turn; who betrayed, and was betrayed; who never sought to cause pain to others, yet left a trail of affairs and broken marriages in his wake . . . And whose life was ultimately defined by one relationship of such tenderness and devotion that only death could sever it: his partnership with the man he knew as Babe.he is Stan Laurel.But he did not really exist. Stan Laurel was a fiction.With he, John Connolly recreates the golden age of Hollywood for an intensely compassionate study of the tension between commercial demands and artistic integrity, the human frailties behind even the greatest of artists, and one of the most enduring and beloved partnerships in cinema history: Laurel &Hardy.

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A Game of Ghosts

John Connolly
Authors:
John Connolly
Hodder & Stoughton

A Time of Torment

John Connolly
Authors:
John Connolly

Jerome Burnel was once a hero. He intervened to prevent multiple killings and in doing so damned himself. His life was torn apart. He was imprisoned, brutalized.But in his final days, with the hunters circling, he tells his story to private detective Charlie Parker. He speaks of the girl who was marked for death but was saved, of the ones who tormented him, and an entity that hides in a ruined stockade.Parker is not like other men. He died, and was reborn. He is ready to wage war.Now he will descend upon a strange, isolated community called the Cut, and face down a force of men who rule by terror, intimidation, and murder.All in the name of the being they serve.All in the name of the Dead King.(P)2016 Hodder & Stoughton

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A Song of Shadows

John Connolly
Authors:
John Connolly

Grievously wounded private detective Charlie Parker investigates a case that has its origins in a Nazi concentration camp during the Second World War.Broken, but undeterred, private detective Charlie Parker faces the darkest of dark forces in a case with its roots in the second world war, and a concentration camp unlike any other . . .Recovering from a near-fatal shooting and tormented by memories of a world beyond this one, Parker has retreated to the small Maine town of Boreas to recover. There he befriends a widow named Ruth Winter and her young daughter, Amanda. But Ruth has her secrets. She is hiding from the past, and the forces that threaten her have their origins in the Second World War, in a town called Lubko and a concentration camp unlike any other. Old atrocities are about to be unearthed, and old sinners will kill to hide their sins. Now Parker is about to risk his life to defend a woman he barely knows, one who fears him almost as much as she fears those who are coming for her.His enemies believe him to be vulnerable. Fearful. Solitary.But they are wrong. Parker is far from afraid, and far from alone.For something is emerging from the shadows . . .

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The Whisperers

John Connolly
Authors:
John Connolly

Detective Charlie Parker returns in another chilling thriller - a must-read for fans of Michael Connelly and Jeffery Deaver.The border between Maine and Canada is porous. Anything can be smuggled across it: drugs, cash, weapons, people.Now a group of disenchanted former soldiers has begun its own smuggling operation, and what is being moved is infinitely stranger and more terrifying than anyone can imagine. Anyone, that is, except private detective Charlie Parker, who has his own intimate knowledge of the darkness in men's hearts.But the soldiers' actions have attracted the attention of the reclusive Herod, a man with a taste for the strange. And where Herod goes, so too does the shadowy figure that he calls the Captain. To defeat them, Parker must form an uneasy alliance with a man he fears more than any other, the killer known as the Collector . . .

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The Creeps

John Connolly
Authors:
John Connolly

Samuel Johnson is not in a happy place. He is dating the wrong girl, demons are occupying his spare room, and the town in which he lives appears to be cursed.But there is some good news on the horizon. After years of neglect, the grand old building that once housed Wreckit & Sons is about to reopen as the greatest toyshop that Biddlecombe has ever seen, and Samuel and his faithful dachshund Boswell are to be guests of honour at the big event. A splendid time will be had by all, as long as they can ignore the sinister statue that keeps moving around the town, the Shadows that are slowly blocking out the stars, the murderous Christmas elves, and the fact that somewhere in Biddlecombe a rotten black heart is beating a rhythm of revenge.A trap has been set. The Earth is doomed. The last hope for humanity lies with one young boy and the girl who's secretly in love with him. Oh, and a dog, two demons, four dwarfs and a very polite monster.(P)2013 Hodder & Stoughton

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The Charlie Parker Collection 1-4

John Connolly
Authors:
John Connolly

The first four novels in the Charlie Parker series, available together as a digital-only package. Former NYPD Charlie Parker first appears in EVERY DEAD THING on a quest for the killer of his wife and daughter. He is a man consumed by violence, guilt and the desire for revenge. When his ex-partner asks him to track down a missing girl, Parker embarks on a grim odyssey through the bowels of organised crime to a unique serial killer: The Travelling Man.In DARK HOLLOW, Private detective Charlie Parker embarks on a nerve-shredding manhunt and closes in on his prime suspect. But someone else is tracking them both.Parker's empathy with the powerless victims of crime is growing ever stronger. It makes him a natural choice to investigate the death of Grace Peltier in THE KILLING KIND - a death that appears to be a suicide. Genial killers Angel and Louis join Parker again as he descends into a honeycomb world populated by dark angels and lost souls.In THE WHITE ROAD, a black youth faces the death penalty for rape and murder; his victim, the daughter of one of the wealthiest men in South Carolina. It is a case with its roots in old evil, and old evil is Charlie Parker's speciality. Evil men from his past unite to exact a terrible revenge on the private detective.

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The Charlie Parker Collection 5-8

John Connolly
Authors:
John Connolly
Hodder & Stoughton

Books to Die For

John Connolly, Declan Burke
Authors:
John Connolly, Declan Burke

With so many mystery novels to choose from and so many new titles appearing each year, where should the reader start? What are the classics of the genre? Which are the hidden gems?In the most ambitious anthology of its kind yet attempted, the world's leading mystery writers have come together to champion the greatest mystery novels ever written. In a series of personal essays that often reveal as much about themselves and their work work as they do about the books that they love, more than 120 authors from twenty countries have created a guide that will be indispensable for generations of readers and writers. From Christie to Child and Poe to PD James, from Sherlock Holmes to Hannibal Lecter and Philip Marlowe to Peter Wimsey, BOOKS TO DIE FOR brings together the cream of the mystery world for a feast of reading pleasure, a treasure trove for those new to the genre and those who believe that there is nothing new left to discover. This is the one essential book for every reader who has ever finished a mystery novel and thought . . . I want more! www.bookstodiefor.net

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The Burning Soul

John Connolly
Authors:
John Connolly

Randall Haight has a secret: when he was a teenager, he and his friend killed a 14-year-old girl.Randall did his time and built a new life in the small Maine town of Pastor's Bay, but somebody has discovered the truth about Randall. He is being tormented by anonymous messages, haunting reminders of his past crime, and he wants private detective Charlie Parker to make it stop.But another 14-year-old girl has gone missing, this time from Pastor's Bay, and the missing girl's family has its own secrets to protect. Now Parker must unravel a web of deceit involving the police, the FBI, a doomed mobster named Tommy Morris, and Randall Haight himself.Because Randall Haight is telling lies . . .(P)2012 ISIS Publishing Ltd

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Every Dead Thing

John Connolly
Authors:
John Connolly
Hodder & Stoughton

Dark Hollow

John Connolly
Authors:
John Connolly

Still raw from the brutal slayings of his wife and daughter, and the events surrounding the capture of their killer, The Travelling Man, Charlie Parker retreats to the wintry Maine landscape of his childhood. By following in the steps of his beloved grandfather, Parker hopes to heal his spirit and get through the bitter anniversary of Jennifer and Susan's murder. But the echoes of the past that await him are not all benign. In a gruesome re-enactment of Parker's own nightmares, another young woman is killed with her child and his brief involvement in their lives impels Parker to hunt their vicious murderer. As the death toll mounts, Parker comes to realise that the true answer to the puzzle lies thirty years in the past, in a tree with strange fruit, in his own grandfather's history, and in the perverted desires of a monster incarnate - Caleb Kyle.(P)2004 ISIS Publishing Ltd

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The Killing Kind

John Connolly
Authors:
John Connolly

Did Grace Peltier commit suicide? When a mass grave in northern Maine reveals the final resting place of a religious community that disappeared almost forty years earlier, private detective Charlie Parker, hired to investigate the circumstances of her death, realises that their deaths and the violent passing of Grace Peltier are part of the same mystery, one that has its roots in her family history and in the origins of the shadowy organisation known as the Fellowship. Aided by the genial killers Angel and Louis, Parker must descend into the depths of a honeycomb world populated by dark angels and lost souls, a world where the ghosts of the dead wait for justice and the unwary are prey for the worst kind of creatures.The killing kind. . .(P)2004 ISIS Publishing Ltd

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Hell's Bells

John Connolly
Authors:
John Connolly

Samuel Johnson - with a little help from his dachshund Boswell and a very unlucky demon named Nurd - has sent the demons back to Hell. But the diabolical Mrs Abernathy is not one to take defeat lying down.When she reopens the portal and sucks Samuel and Boswell down into the underworld, she brings an ice-cream van full of dwarfs as well. And two policemen. Can this eccentric gang defeat the forces of Evil? And is there life after Hell for Nurd?(P)2011 ISIS Publishing Ltd

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The Lovers

John Connolly
Authors:
John Connolly
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The Reapers

John Connolly
Authors:
John Connolly
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The Gates

John Connolly
Authors:
John Connolly

A strange novel for strange young people.Young Samuel Johnson and his dachshund Boswell are trying to show initiative by trick-or-treating a full three days before Hallowe'en. Which is how they come to witness strange goings-on at 666 Crowley Avenue. The Abernathys don't mean any harm by their flirtation with Satanism. But it just happens to coincide with a malfunction in the Large Hadron Collider that creates a gap in the universe. A gap in which there is a pair of enormous gates. The gates to Hell. And there are some pretty terrifying beings just itching to get out . . .Can Samuel persuade anyone to take this seriously? Can he harness the power of science to save the world as we know it? (P)2010 ISIS Publishing Ltd

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The Black Angel

John Connolly
Authors:
John Connolly

The Black Angel is not an object. The Black Angel is not a myth. The Black Angel lives. A young woman goes missing from the streets of New York. Those who have taken her believe that nobody cares about her, and that no one will come looking for her. They are wrong. She is 'blood' to the killer Louis, the man who stands at the right hand of private detective Charlie Parker, and Louis will tear apart anyone who stands in the way of his attempts to find her.But as Louis's violent search progresses, Parker comes to realize that the disappearance is part of an older mystery, one that is linked to an ornate church of bones in Eastern Europe, to the slaughter at a French monastery in 1944, and to the quest for a mythical prize that has been sought for centuries by evil men: the Black Angel.Yet the Black Angel is more than a myth. It is conscious. It dreams. It is alive.And men are not the only creatures that seek it . . .(P)2005 ISIS Publishing Ltd

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The Unquiet

John Connolly
Authors:
John Connolly

The sixth haunting Charlie Parker thriller not to be missed by fans of Stephen King and Michael Connelly.'This man's so good, it's terrifying.' - The TimesDaniel Clay, a once-respected psychiatrist, has been missing for years following revelations about harm done to the children in his care. Believing him dead, his daughter Rebecca has tried to come to terms with her father's legacy, but her fragile peace is about to be shattered. Someone is asking questions about Daniel Clay, someone who does not believe that he is dead: the revenger Merrick, a father and a killer obsessed with discovering the truth about his own daughter's disappearance. Private detective Charlie Parker is hired to make Merrick go away, but Merrick will not be stopped. Soon Parker finds himself trapped between those who want the truth about Daniel Clay to be revealed, and those who want it to remain hidden at all costs. But there are other forces at work here. Someone is funding Merrick's hunt, a ghost from Parker's past. And Merrick's actions have drawn others from the shadows, half-glimpsed figures intent upon their own form of revenge, pale wraiths drifting through the ranks of the unquiet dead. The Hollow Men have come . . .

Hodder & Stoughton

Bad Men

John Connolly
Authors:
John Connolly

In 1693, the settlers on the small Maine island of Sanctuary were betrayed to their enemies and slaughtered. Since then, the island has known three hundred years of peace. Until now. For men are descending on Sanctuary, their purpose to hunt down and kill the wife of their leader and retrieve the money that she stole from him. All that stands in their way are a young rookie officer, Sharon Macy, and the island's strange, troubled policeman, the giant known as Melancholy Joe Dupree. But Joe Dupree is no ordinary policeman. He is the guardian of the island's secrets, the repository of its memories. He knows that Sanctuary has been steeped in blood once; it will tolerate the shedding of blood no longer. Now a band of killers is set to desecrate Sanctuary and unleash the fury of its ghosts upon themselves and all who stand by them. On Sanctuary, evil is about to meet its match.