James Lawless The Avenue

ISBN 13: 9781907017025

The Avenue

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9781907017025: The Avenue
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The story of Francis Copeland, middle-aged librarian, life and marriage in a rut, childless he befriends the children of the avenue. Emerging from a life behind books, raw suburban truths are exposed as Francis slowly unravels the secrets of the avenue.

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From the Author:

The Genesis of The Avenue
 
The Avenue represents my response to the myth of suburbia as a panacea for the ills of society. The story hangs essentially as a picture of suburban degeneration. My family like a lot of others moved from inner city to the suburbs for the 'open space and fresh air'(I had asthma as a child). However, in moving we unwittingly left behind a world with a strong community spirit for an anonymous sprawl where social interaction was at a minimum. The open spaces soon filled in as houses and the population increased, cars multiplied and the former inner-city congestion, from which people had previously fled, was now itself an intrinsic element of a suburban/city commuting lifestyle. But little heed was paid to the social changes that followed: the permanent traffic jams, the noise, the former city communities ripped apart to make highways to facilitate the suburban commuters, the two parent incomes, the latch-key children, the new landscape of industrial debris, used condoms, cider bottles, lager cans and of course the lethal drug culture. All the time the scream was bursting through the spreading graffiti on suburban walls. But the powers that be refused to hear.
The novel is not all gloom however. Although it may be read as I have said as a picture of suburban degeneration, it is paralleled, despite the calamities, by a story of human regeneration, particularly in the characters of Francis and Michael and even  - almost contradictorily  -  Francis' father. My intention was to use the avenue as a trawling device to pierce the anonymity of a waste land. I perceive the avenue almost as one would a country village, small inward-looking with its hidden past and secrets, a crucible if you like in which the characters live entrapped lives and as a consequence (consciously or otherwise) are almost incestuously interlinked. Or to put it in the words of Francis' old cottage neighbour, Mrs Dempsey: 'The avenue cared for her own.'

From the Back Cover:

"James Lawless has a mighty thoughtful and penetrating capacity to make you gasp and rage and then burst out laughing: wheels within wheels, circles within circles, this book is very good."
Jennifer Johnston
"A work of passion and truth, which captures a moment of painful transition in the national story. If a multicultural England has drawn a map of itself in Brick Lane, so has a postmodern Ireland traced its past and present in The Avenue. James Lawless has revealed with indignation and art, yet another Hidden Ireland beyond the imaginings of our ancestors."
Declan Kiberd

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Book Description Wordsonthestreet. Paperback. Condition: New. 238 pages. Dimensions: 8.0in. x 4.9in. x 0.6in.The story of Francis Copeland, middle-aged librarian, life and marriage in a rut, childless he befriends the children of the avenue. Emerging from a life behind books, raw suburban truths are exposed as Francis slowly unravels the secrets of the avenue. This item ships from multiple locations. Your book may arrive from Roseburg,OR, La Vergne,TN. Paperback. Seller Inventory # 9781907017025

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