I gave up at page 78. I didn't like the story and didn't care about any of the characters. The story didn't capture me, in fact, I dreaded having to pick up the book and continue. I prefer books that take me away, totally engross me and that I can't put down. I had no trouble putting this book down for days and permanently. It was torture to read it and I didn't feel like torturing my brain anymore.
I had so looked forward to reading this book as it was recommended by my book club coordinator. I am also very interested in Northern Ireland, having ancestors from there and having visited in 2006. The UK's Guardsman claimed it was funny, which is totally misleading. I didn't find it funny at all. It was a dark, depressing story. And yes I already know quite well from my readings about the Troubles that it was a dark, depressing time. I visited the memorials in Belfast. I stayed at a B&B in Falls Road where the proprietor's childhood friend had been gunned down right outside the door.
I didn't care at all for the author's writing style. It was like reading the ramblings of a disturbed person. It was difficult to read --- it didn't flow and was very choppy and meandering. I'm shocked this book won a prize. It was a complete waste of my time. If I had known the book was a mess and downer, I would not have bothered to read it. Maybe I have read all I can about the Troubles and can no longer stomach the subject. Very disappointed. Oh, well, I only paid $4.50 for a used copy but now I wish I had used that money to buy a book I really wanted to read.