Title: Shuggie Bain
Authors: Stuart, Douglas
Genre: Fiction
Pages: 430
Year: 2020
Language: English
Description: You can say what you like about young Shuggie being different and not fitting in, but there's no denying the fact that he loves his mother and is loyal to her through thick and thin. Life in the Thatcher era hasn't been easy for Agnes Bain - three children with absent fathers, no money to speak of and the lure of the demon drink. Poverty, addiction, abuse ... the grim realities of gentle Shuggie's Glaswegian childhood that he is doing his best to survive.

Raw and powerful, this is an unflinching coming-of-age story of love and brokenness, written with empathy and expressed through its well developed characters.

Comments from BDS Reviewers:

"Well-written, very descriptive, with well-fleshed out characters."

"Very well written. You're right there with Shuggie.

"Any Booker prize winner is likely to be a tough read and Shuggie Bain is no exception."

"It's at least partly auto-biographical - goodness!"

"The book is set in 1980s Glasgow when the mines and shipyards are closing and poverty and social disorder was rampant. Throw alcoholism into the mix, and Shuggie's life was tough. However the book is well written and very evocative of the struggles of the time, and worth sticking with, even when you feel it's too tough."

"While there's no fairytale ending, there are glimpses of hope and a future for Glasgow and its people."

"The language is from time to time fairly salty, but in context, appropriate."

"The sexual content and violence is graphic but this is part of the society depicted."

Categories: Fiction, Award Winner, Community, Culture/Ethnic/Racial, Relationships, Social commentary/perspectives, Scotland, 2022 Titles


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By: ROTO 013 2022-04-29 12:37:17
Polarising book - some couldn't get past the first chapter, others loved it and found it very moving.

By: WHANG 022 2021-10-27 12:40:13
Loved this book - except for one of us who speaks English as a second language, who found the Scottish accent quite hard to follow. All characters were sympathetically written about - sad and beautiful.

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