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Book of the month: Himself

Eithne Farry reviews the new novel by Jess Kidd

Lovable thief and Dublin charmer, Mahony, may have a dashing, devil-may-care air about him - but the 26-year-old is also on a mission to discover what really happened to his teenage mother in Mulderrig - 'a benign speck of a place' - hidden by hills and woods on the west coast of Ireland.

Armed with a photograph, a letter and the kind of insouciant charm that beguiles and enrages the locals in equal measure, Mahony sets about uncovering the truth and, in so doing, awakens the dead from their graves.

In lyrical prose that is by turns touchingly tender and violent, Kidd's brilliantly bold debut mixes murder and mayhem with the eerily supernatural, and throws in a dash of laugh-out-loud humour for good measure.

Jess Kidd's debut novel, Himself  (Canongate, £12.99), is out now and has been shortlisted for the Irish Book Awards 2016 - Sunday Independent Newcomer of the Year. 

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