Even the Dogs

Even the Dogs

A Novel

Book - 2010
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On a cold, quiet day between Christmas and the New Year, a man's body is found in an abandoned apartment. His friends look on, but they're dead, too. Their bodies found in squats and sheds and alleyways across the city. Victims of a bad batch of heroin, they're in the shadows, a chorus keeping vigil as the hours pass, paying their own particular homage as their friend's body is taken away, examined, investigated, and cremated.

All of their stories are laid out piece by broken piece through a series of fractured narratives. We meet Robert, the deceased, the only alcoholic in a sprawling group of junkies; Danny, just back from uncomfortable holidays with family, who discovers the body and futiley searches for his other friends to share the news of Robert's death; Laura, Robert's daughter, who stumbles into the junky's life when she moves in with her father after years apart; Heather, who has her own place for the first time since she was a teenager; Mike, the Falklands War vet; and all the others.

Theirs are stories of lives fallen through the cracks, hopes flaring and dying, love overwhelmed by a stronger need, and the havoc wrought by drugs, distress, and the disregard of the wider world. These invisible people live in a parallel reality, out of reach of basic creature comforts, like food and shelter. In their sudden deaths, it becomes clear, they are treated with more respect than they ever were in their short lives.

Intense, exhilarating, and shot through with hope and fury, Even the Dogs is an intimate exploration of life at the edges of society--littered with love, loss, despair, and a half-glimpse of redemption.

Publisher: New York : Bloomsbury USA, 2010
Edition: 1st U.S. ed
ISBN: 9781596913486
Characteristics: 195 p. ; 21 cm


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Jan 20, 2013

The author is brillant. But this is a very difficult read ( almost unreadable) unless you are determined to read it. I had to try three times before I finally got through it. Immensely sad and dark ( depressing) but it finally grabbed me. I found it very thought provoking and haunting.

Apr 14, 2012

It's a grim subject matter, but McGregor handles it excellently. He writes a kind of prose that rolls off your tongue like poetry, and he disregards some basic grammar (like finishing a sentence with a period, quotation marks etc.) and I think he pulled it off, though some people might disagree with me and say it was a hard read.


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