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The Long Run

3.25 of 5 stars 3.25  ·  rating details  ·  218 ratings  ·  35 reviews
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From a hill above town, the Mount Kildare Orphanage for Boys looks down on the small city of St. John’s, Newfoundland. The year is 1960. The orphanage is always cold, there is never enough to eat, and the Catholic Brothers who run the home are heavy-handed in their religious discourses and harsh in their discipline. H
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Hardcover, 368 pages
Published November 14th 2006 by Trumpeter (first published March 9th 2004)
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Community Reviews

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Benjamin
Set in 1960 at a boys orphanage, Mount Kildare, in St John's, Newfoundland, the story is told by one of the of a group of thirteen year old boys who share a dormitory. It's a harsh life, constant cold through the winter and never enough to eat, and liberal beatings handed out by the Brothers who teach at Mount Kildare for both misdemeanours and any slip up in the class room.

Yet the boys make the best of it and pull together showing genuine care and concern for one another. There may be the occas
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Lisa
I liked it, but it wasn't great. The reviews on the back of the book made it sound much better than it turned out. I was waiting for the " ... razor sharp wit ..." Hmmm.
linnea
This book was a disapointment. It started off so well, but I lost interest quickly. I would have rather just watched Annie than read the book.
Kate
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
P

Boys in a Newfoundland orphanage. Even though the way of life is harsh - not enough to eat, heavy handed discipline, dogmatic religious instruction - the boys make their own fun and find support from each other. The book is written with the depth of emotion that seems as if the author lived this life.
good quote:
The world of the imagination is a more real world than the one we wake up to every day
Sjunebug
It was okay, I didn't feel like I had to finish it and was totally wasting my time doing so... But it wasn't riveting. I liked the running bits best.
Adam
Sep 17, 2008 Adam rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: People who like DIckens
This story follows a close group of 'norphs' at a catholic orphanage in Newfoundland as they help each other make the best of a difficult situation. They survive by training in secret for a marathon, stealing wine from the sacristy, and generally breaking a score of ridiculous rules. Besides being a very engaging read, i quite like how Furey keeps pace such as to immerse you in the day to day events while still keeping the story moving and leaving time for stirring insights. There is an awful lo ...more
Deb
There were parts of this book I really enjoyed. The story takes place in a boys' orphanage/school run by priests in 1960 in Newfoundland. Some of the lectures by the brothers are hilarious, as is their attempt to control these boys. The antics of the boys and their loyalty to each other is both amusing and heartwarming. The ending is quite disappointing, after the buildup of the secret training by the boys for the local marathon. I thought the premise of the plot was interesting, which is what k ...more
Amy
Okay, I'm just going to say it... are teenage boys THAT obsessed with masturbation? I'm sorry if you are sensitive to those words, but if you are don't read this book. Another great writer, interesting and even lovable characters and good plot, but too much vulgarity for me to finish. I guess I'm turning into a prude in my old age!
Christa Sigman
I give up. I am 2/3 through this book and it just is not interesting or compelling. The jacket compares it to Angela's Ashes and says it is laugh out loud funny. I have read all of Frank McCourt's books and loved them, and this is a serious misrepresentation. Yawn, snooze, snore! I
Kay
An absolutely wonderful read. The story takes place in Canada. The author is Canadian. The catholic angle of the story is very familiar to me as I went to a catholic school and could get the funny parts of the story. And oh how I loved the sumo wrestler story...loved it all....
Patricia
This book has a lot going for it in the way of characters and storyline but the choppy writing style gets in the way of what could have been an engrossing read. Still, it was enjoyable and I find myself thinking about those boys and the men they may have turned out to be.
Paul
Jun 23, 2012 Paul added it
I thoroughly enjoyed this story. I thought the characters were engaging and held my interest. Having grown up in a catholic environment, I truly connected with some of the crazy rules and enjoyed the humor as the boys did their best to apply a dose of reality to these rules.
Whitney
Not a great read - but a glorious break from cases during the holiday! :)

Was duped by the excellent reviews of the book (it is a well-lauded coming-of-age novel set in a Canadian boys home) but disappointed in the vague story-line and static characters. Not recommended.
Krista
This was a nice, understated story. The pacing was good - not a 'read in one night' sort of book....you will want to spend some time with this one. These characters will stay with you and you will find yourself thinking about them long after you have closed the book.
Pammy
When certain sections of this story made me laugh, I would feel guilty...guilty because the author also forced me to accept as reality the heartless, cruelties these abandoned boys were made to endure in the name of religion.
Tiffany
I loved that this book still made me laugh even when I was floored by the stories of these boys lives. And I think that is why I enjoyed this read so much, because in that respect it felt real...

I cried and wanted more.
Deb
4.5 stars. Wonderful story about boys growing up in a Catholic orphanage in 1960. I loved their resiliency. The narrator has a great voice and there is a touch of humor to an otherwise grim situation. Highly recommended!
Annie
Reminded me of Angela's Ashes, but a bit more light hearted with a funny batch of characters. Some parts (especially the end) didn't get the attention they deserved, but still loved the boys and their unique quest.
Sarah
I had high hopes for this book, some parts were good but other parts had me skimming through. I thought the race was going to be more emphasized, but I guess the whole point of the book was the "journey" there.
Sue
quite an ok read... story tough...I want to bop those who think the way to raise kids is to be so mean to them.... certain groups seems to have had such a philosophy... so would be a 4 if story was not so tough...
alyssa kohler
Growing up Catholic, I think I was able to find a little more humor in this book than others might. Definitely not a "can't put it down" type of read, but a steady, interesting story with some memorable characters.
Ron
Novel set in a boy's catholic orphanage in Newfoundland in the 1960's. Story is about how boys deal with the harsh realities of growing up in the stark surroundings of an orphanage. Funny and sad.
Rebecca
One of my all time favorite books. It's heart wrenching at times, but definitely worth reading. Another book that shows no matter how bad your childhood is, everything can still be OK.
Kelly
Oct 21, 2007 Kelly rated it 1 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: no one
i learned that when i have 5 minutes at Borders to find a book for my plane ride, i jsut just choose a magazine instead.
Meghan Mahaffey
Great read! Several small story lines and characters to follow along the main trajectory of the book.
Nora
Great story, although it took a while to get into it. It reminded me a little of A Separate Peace.
TJH
a million little pieces meets born to run, and took the least compelling parts of both...
Eileen
Jun 04, 2008 Eileen rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommended to Eileen by: Liz
Read about young boys bonding in an orphanage in Newfoundland. It is funny and sad.
stillme
Dec 02, 2008 stillme added it
Shelves: didn-t-finish
I give up. It's taking me longer to get into this book than the run itself.
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