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The Prodigal: A Novel de Michael Hurley
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The Prodigal: A Novel (edició 2013)

de Michael Hurley

MembresRessenyesPopularitatValoració mitjanaConverses
4714431,617 (4.37)No n'hi ha cap
"Stirring, romantic, and evocative of the sea's magic." -Kirkus ReviewsThis sweeping allegorical tale begins with the escape of a Gypsy princess and her young lover from her father's camp in 1851, recalling the flight of Adam and Eve from the Garden of Eden. The boy steals Prodigal, a sailing ship blessed with unnatural speed, and the lovers escape to sea, leaving the father to grieve for the loss and pine for the return of his child. More than 150 years later on Ocracoke Island we meet Aidan Sharpe, an aging lawyer, as he rises from the sand of a remote beach after a lost weekend. While struggling to rebuild his life in this lonely outpost of the Outer Banks, Aidan is caught up in a two-thousand-year-old mystery that unfolds with the sudden reappearance of Prodigal off the coast, adrift and unmanned. Its discovery will lead Aidan and those close to him into the deep, in a race between time and eternity. "[A]n intriguing, well-plotted, and multilayered novel. The supernatural elements-a religious relic, a gypsy woman out of legend-are thougtfully handled. Hurley writes beautifully, especially when depicting island and nautical life." -Kirkus Reviews… (més)
Membre:CreateWithJoy
Títol:The Prodigal: A Novel
Autors:Michael Hurley
Informació:CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform (2013), Paperback, 358 pages
Col·leccions:La teva biblioteca
Valoració:*****
Etiquetes:No n'hi ha cap

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The Prodigal: A Novel de Michael Hurley

No n'hi ha cap
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Es mostren 1-5 de 14 (següent | mostra-les totes)
Sometimes, and only some rare times I stumble across a book that defies description. Suffice it to say that certain chapters caused a swift and sharp intake of breath. Others had me shaking my head and mouthing, "No, no don't do or say that" to the characters as if I might have some impact on their behavior. And the positing of how this story was going to come together had me wishing for more time to read just another page, another chapter. The writing was beautiful, intelligent and perfectly descriptive. There was a perfect blend of theory, supposition and the room for the ultimate leap of faith. This is among the few books I will hold close and remember. ( )
  kimkimkim | Aug 21, 2017 |
The Prodigal by Michael Hurley opens with a princess and her lover escaping on a boat and then jumps to the present where we meet Aidan Sharpe on Ocracoke Island. Aiden is a talented partner in a prestigious Raleigh law firm whose life is on the cusp of taking a turn in a new direction. While it looks like Aiden's life is headed for a great fall, he actually begins to rebuild his life in an unexpected way back on Ocracoke Island with an unlikely group of cohorts while overcoming an enemy and restoring a boat with a mysterious past.

The Prodigal is an incredibly well written debut novel. This well rounded novel includes a mystery, a legend, a little romance, personal challenges, and pulls in knowledge of the law, Catholicism, and sailing. It is also an allegorical novel. Those with a background of Biblical stories will be able to make comparisons between characters and events in the book and the Bible. But note that the religious underpinnings of this novel are not force fed to anyone and any previous knowledge of them is not necessary because this is also an epic tale of self-discovery. It truly begs comparison to a legendary mythological struggle where the imperfect hero has to overcome great odds - with a hint of magic realism.

Those who enjoy literary fiction are going to love The Prodigal. Themes explored include: human frailty and failings, loss and betrayal, self-awareness and discovery, restoration and redemption, friendship and hope, loyalty, honor, and trust. The characters are all imperfect but many of them are trying to overcome their limitations and do the best they can under their various circumstances. Hurley does a commendable job of not judging his characters, while allowing them their various human frailties and foibles.

I am actually surprised at how much I loved The Prodigal. Admittedly the first third of The Prodigal was slow to totally capture my attention while the backstory and all the characters were being set into place, but once it hit its stride, I was completely hooked. Hurley manages to weave so many diverse elements into his tale, but, just as in life, a good story has many different parts to it.

Its surprising to note that this is Hurley's debut novel. He's written other things, but for a first novel there is a depth, intelligence, and thoughtfulness present that make you crave more.

Very Highly Recommended

(As of the writing of this review on 10/8 the Kindle edition was .99!)

Disclosure: I received an advanced reading copy of this book from the publisher and TLC for review purposes.

( )
  SheTreadsSoftly | Mar 21, 2016 |
Aidan Sharpe was a lawyer feared by his peers. There was no case he couldn’t handle, and his many wealthy clients were a boon to his firm and his own fortune. Life was good, until a wrong decision brought everything crashing down. Read the rest of my review on my blog: http://shouldireaditornot.wordpress.com/2014/03/14/the-prodigal-michael-c-hurley... ( )
  ShouldIReadIt | Sep 26, 2014 |
The Prodigal Demonstrates the Power of Redemption. For full review, visit The Book Wheel>. ( )
  thebookwheel | Jun 17, 2014 |
“Hateful to me as the gates of Hades is that man who hides one thing in his heart and speaks another.”
― Homer, The Iliad

“I felt once more how simple and frugal a thing is happiness: a glass of wine, a roast chestnut, a wretched little brazier, the sound of the sea. Nothing else.”
― Nikos Kazantzakis, Zorba the Greek

THE PRODIGAL NOMINATED FOR BOOKBUNDLZ AWARD!!!!!

Michael Hurley’s astoundingly good novel, The Prodigal was chosen as a finalist along with four other novels by reviewers for the 2013 annual BookBundlz Book Club Pick contest. The finalists were announced on August 1. This is an annual contest to select the best novel for thousands of book club members around the world. The reviewers selected the finalists, but the winning book, to be named on September 1, will be determined solely by the greatest number of votes from the general public between now and August 31. People can sign up at the BookBundlz website to vote once per day and see where each of the five finalists stands in the running day by day. Here’s where you go to vote: http://www.bookbundlz.com/votingpage.aspx

UPDATED INFORMATION ON THE PRODIGAL!!!

As many of you know, I have used The Prodigal as a favoured book recommendation to my followers on GoodReads and have been happy to do so. I hope those of you who have received the recommendation have purchased the book and enjoyed it as much as I have. If not, I can’t recommend it highly enough.
Winning this contest means enormous exposure for the book and the author, which explains why Random House and other established publishers have 3 out of the 5 books in the finals. This is an AMAZING FEAT for a self-published author.

Good luck, Michael and The Prodigal!!!

We now return to our regularly scheduled review:


Aidan Sharpe is a weapon. A tightly honed weapon of savage grace, designed to cut and hew his way through a courtroom, leaving a trail of blood and broken lives in his wake. And a man who, as Michael Hurley describes him, a man who refused above all else to learn from his own mistakes . . .” And a man who, apparently, neither learns from his own mistakes, nor understands the depths to which he has fallen when his world comes crashing down. A man so intent on his own destruction, so lost in admiration of his own reflection in the mirror that that he thinks, even then, to grasp glory from ignominy.

And hence begin the travels of a man, once powerful, into a world entirely new. A world that, unbeknownst to him, will change his life, and his soul, forever.

Aidan washes up upon the dwindling sands of Ocracoke Island, North Carolina, a man once renowned for this ability to miss no objection, to leave no emotion unexploited; now empty and barren, a shattered career leaving him no anchor to hold against the wind, and yet no sail to cross the wine dark sea of his own inner landscape.

Forced now, to become someone he never thought to be, he settles into the home of the local Catholic Priest, and begins his life as a simple boat yard hand, surrounded by the beauty of the island and the people there. A land of unadorned and sometimes brutal honesty, where life or death lie upon the break of a wave or the gust of a wind.

Hurley’s characters are heart wrenching and uplifting by turns. A lost woman, washed up amongst the waves, with no name to call her own. A priest more interested in kindness than creed. A Bahamian sailor, with secrets of his own. And a redheaded, female Irish tugboat captain, whose openness and honesty are in diametric opposition to Aidan who, in his own words, is quite capable of betrayal, deceit, manipulation, cruelty, self-pity and cowardice. And yet, those around him still think him a good and true man . . .

Into his life comes a sailing ship, lost upon the seas, empty and forlorn, which changes not only his life, but the lives of those around him. A boat, perhaps, out of time, and out of legend. A boat which, once again, changes his life and his destiny. Or does it?

There are great swaths of this book that I found touching, heart breaking and deeply moving. There is kindness and black cruelty, deception and honesty, lies and the purest of truths. In all honesty, I was brought up rather short about three-quarters of the way through the book when it became bogged down, in my opinion, in a type of blatant religiosity which pulled down the narrative. The story line is drug down, into a fog of didactic symbolism that lessened much of the joy inherent in Hurley’s words. The story to that point was poetic in nature, carrying me along in a haze of beautiful words. The story did pick back up, though some of the joy of the story was stolen from me, much to my disappointment. But it was, in all, not a deadly issue for the overall clarity and poetry of the book.

Much is made of the human ability to change and grow, and the possibilities of absolution. The setting of the story greatly encourages that idea. The sea, unchanging in its potential for change at any moment, the poetry of the words, do much to encourage the possibilities of redemption, of an answer to the question of what makes a ‘good man’ and whether an evil man can change, can become ‘good’.

Overall, except for the hiccup described, the book is beautifully done. Hurley’s descriptions of the land, the sea, and the people are charming. The story harkens back to the days of Homer, and the sailing of the great and unknown seas. I could nearly smell the sea and hear the waves. I wanted very much to walk the streets of Ocracoke and gaze out upon the Atlantic, to horizons unknown and unseen.

Highly Recommended. ( )
  soireadthisbooktoday | May 4, 2014 |
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No n'hi ha cap

"Stirring, romantic, and evocative of the sea's magic." -Kirkus ReviewsThis sweeping allegorical tale begins with the escape of a Gypsy princess and her young lover from her father's camp in 1851, recalling the flight of Adam and Eve from the Garden of Eden. The boy steals Prodigal, a sailing ship blessed with unnatural speed, and the lovers escape to sea, leaving the father to grieve for the loss and pine for the return of his child. More than 150 years later on Ocracoke Island we meet Aidan Sharpe, an aging lawyer, as he rises from the sand of a remote beach after a lost weekend. While struggling to rebuild his life in this lonely outpost of the Outer Banks, Aidan is caught up in a two-thousand-year-old mystery that unfolds with the sudden reappearance of Prodigal off the coast, adrift and unmanned. Its discovery will lead Aidan and those close to him into the deep, in a race between time and eternity. "[A]n intriguing, well-plotted, and multilayered novel. The supernatural elements-a religious relic, a gypsy woman out of legend-are thougtfully handled. Hurley writes beautifully, especially when depicting island and nautical life." -Kirkus Reviews

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