Shuggie Bain by Douglas Stuart

Updated: Aug 23, 2020

Such a sad sad story. I have read some reviews which advised only to read this if you are mentally in a good place and I would agree. It tells the story of Shuggie, who is growing up in neglect and poverty . His mother, Agnes, once as beautiful as Elizabeth Taylor , is now a chronic alcoholic, abandoned

by Shuggie's father, This is a Scotland ravaged by Thatcher's economic policies, hopeless and despairing , as are its people. This novel has been described as memorable and uplifting. Memorable certainly but I found it ultimately depressing. There are passages of great lyricism and beauty and I think it deserves its place on the Booker shortlist, but I hope for the author's sake that it isn't wholly or even partially autobiographical.


Published by Pan Macmillan


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