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A Hole in the Universe
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A Hole in the Universe

3.61 of 5 stars 3.61  ·  rating details  ·  396 ratings  ·  57 reviews
At the age of eighteen, a young man is convicted for the murder of a woman during a robbery and sent to a high security prison. Twenty-five years later, he is finally set free, a changed man painfully entering a changed world. He emerges into a society that has grown unfamiliar and corrupt, his many years inside prison leaving him unprepared for the world beyond the gates. ...more
Audio CD, Abridged, 1 page
Published March 8th 2004 by HighBridge Company (first published 2004)
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Loved this book. Every time I had to put it down I was counting down until I could pick it up again. Beautifully written. I loved both the story and the characters. I'm partial to books set in Detroit, anyway. I could totally visualize the whole thing - it was like I was sitting on the street watching it all unfold. Other reveiwers have indicated that they couldn't understand the motivation of various characters, but I did not find that at all. I "got" each character and their complexities. That ...more
Ever since I stumbled on "Vanished" I've been a huge Morris fan, but I quit "A Hole in the Universe" a quarter way through because of what might be called a severe phobia: I can't bear to read (or reread, in the case of books I previously enjoyed) anything that includes the death of a dog. I stopped reading "Hole" because I grew too anxious about the fate of the girl's dog. Can someone provide a signal on the dog's fate? I know this sounds stupid, but it's a very real problem for me
Gordon Loomis' character is what kept me reading the novel, that and my desire to see how Morris would tie all the disparate elements together. The shifting point of view, and the late add-in of italicized text (whose point of view was that meant to be anyway) were distracting. The ending, in which not only is nothing resolved but Gordon's character still has not reached any ... what, enlightenment? ... was terribly disappointing. The one thing done really well, in my opinion, was the glimpse in ...more
Darryl Mexic
“A Hole in the Universe” by Mary McGarry Morris **** Fiction. The first time I read one of Ms. Morris’ novels, I indicated how fortunate it is that she is a prolific author. She certainly did not disappoint me with the current novel. Her characters are developed to a detailed extent, and she seems to be dead on with the thoughts she gives to the complex characters. Gordon Loomis, a brooding 300 pounds, six and a half feet tall, convicted murderer, is just out of jail after twenty five years of i ...more
Caroline Alicia
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
From Publishers Weekly

What happens when a 43-year-old man returns to live in his hometown after serving a 25-year prison sentence for murder? That is the dramatic question at the center of this fifth novel by Morris (Songs in Ordinary Time; A Dangerous Woman). A contemporary Rip Van Winkle, Gordon Loomis returns to the home he left at age 18 to find a deteriorating neighborhood, overrun by drug dealers and mired in poverty. Gordon's brother, Dennis, sister-in-law Lisa and loyal friend Delores

Existences cabossées, tragédies dérisoires des laissés-pour-compte de l'Amérique profonde... Avec le talent qui a fait l'immense succès de Mélodie du temps ordinaire, Mary McGarry Morris nous livre un roman poignant sur la liberté, le pardon et l'expiation. Après avoir purgé une peine de vingt-cinq ans pour homicide, Gordon Loomis réapprend à vivre dans un monde à peine moins redoutable que l'univers carcéral. Car la paisible ville du Massachusetts où il a grandi est devenue une zone de non-droi ...more
Judy Mann
I honestly and truly have no idea how to rate this book. She is a good writer- there's no question there and she sure gets that dismal depression which has taken over a lot of the east coast-particularily New England. But gimme a break. It got to the point that I physically could not read anything about Jada.I could not read how passive this hulk named Gordon was. I mean quiet is one thing- but his guy was sleepwalking through the whole book. 300 pounds of dead meat. Really. And Jada's just wait ...more
May 24, 2011 Jeffrey rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: mystery lovers
I can tell by reading the first few pages, then the rest of chapter 1 that this is going to be a GOOD book!

It was a great read. All about surviving the urban war zone.

Why? Because the main character is interesting, a big "Loomer" of a man who was imprisoned for murdering a young woman before he was out of public school.

The story begins with him going for a job interview in his first week out of prison where he had been for 25 years. His brother had set up this interview for Loom
I gave this five stars b/c it is an amazing book. But I don't recommend it for the faint of heart. I almost gave up on it several times. The main character is a convicted murderer but... he is very likeable. His "girlfriend" Delores is likeable and pitiable.

The other characters are horrors, in fact this book is a horror story. I probably won't read any of her other books as I don't read Steven King anymore either.
I stayed with this book b/c the writing was wonderful, the characters were well d
A friend at work gave me this work over the summer. I read the first few chapters and then left it lying around in my car for months. I didn't really want to finish it, but one day I was bored and the book in my car was all I had. I am glad I picked it back up. Once I got reimmursed in the story, I was really interested in finishing it.

The story is about Gordon Loomis, a large man who just got out of jail for murder. As a teenager, he was an unwilling accomplice in the murder of a young pregnant
The characters in this book are so real, it feels as though you know them. I listened to this story on CD. There is a lot of bad language in it, but mostly the same 4-letter word over and over, so it's not real bad. It fits the characters who use it that often and the story wouldn't be as vibrant without it. Don't let that stop you from reading this book. The author does an amazing job at making the people in the book believable with all their flaws. The range of characters is wide. I felt an ar ...more
Picked this up on a whim at the local library (which I normally have great success with) though sadly not in this case. While the work was well written (hence 2 stars over 1) the story itself fell very flat and was very much a dud in my option. I didn't even finish it, which I have only done a small handful of times. All library grabs can't be great while this was not terrible by any means, I certainly wouldn't recommend it to fellow readers either. With a title Hole in the Universe I just expec ...more
I stayed with this book until the end, but was dissatisfied by unresolved storylines at the end. This is a book full of characters that are really hard to like. Most of them live on a street filled with violent crime and drugs so they live a hard life. We have glimpses of their lives, but don’t have a good picture of them. Sometimes their motivation is clear, but not always. Gordon is the most frustrating. He is the main character and was recently paroled after serving 25 years in prison for a m ...more
Sad, just a very sad book. The tale centers around Gordon, just home after 25 years in the slammer for a murder; his actual involvement was real, but is somewhat unclear. He has more sense about his responsibility and the results of that act than do the others in his circle. The romantic interest is so pathetic in her efforts to please (everyone, not just Gordon) that she made me cringe. And so it goes.

There is the expected "dominance of the human spirit" stuff here, but all in all the book made
Really?!! The ending?!!! Ugh, I wanted a more final closure...:/
"I never would have thought that I could root for a murderer, which would be a sign of an author who is very good at characterization. Gordon returns to his hometown after 25 yrs. in jail, starting over where everyone thinks they know his story. His 13 yr. old neighbor is just trying to survive, with a crack addict for a mother. The girl decides to latch on to Gordon. Then there is the elderly neighbor, watching her neighborhood fall apart. Book would lend itself well to a book discussion.
Catherine Mahoney
Like the idea of following a main character released from prison. Will also say I was page turning toward the end, wanting to know how it would all turn out. But, in the end, a miss for me. Almost good, but too many moments where the writing and/or plotting slid into the trite or formulaic.
Grace Sheese
This was a really good book. I was on edge towards the end because I cared about what happened to the characters, all of whom felt real to me. My only issue with the book (and it's not even really an issue) is how sad parts of the book was. It was sad because it was so realistic and because as I've mentioned, I really cared about the characters. I think my next book needs to be a lighthearted one to balance things out.
This is the story of a man who just got out of prison from a crime he was convicted of as a teenager. His brother and brother's wife are trying to make the transition to "real life" smooth for him, but he just wants to be left alone. He moves into his childhood home (left for him by his deceased parents) and his neighborhood is filled with crime and drugs.
A bit depressing of a story, but I enjoyed reading it.
If you have never read Mary McGarry Morris I will tell you that she is the master at writing about dysfunctional families -- if you do not like this genre you probably will not like anything she writes. She actually fascinates me and this book was no exception. Again this book was about lowlife dysfunctional characters but the reading is compelling --at least to me. Not a book for everyone.
Lisa Thomson
There is some beautiful prose here. I was rooting for Gordon Loomis in a big way. This book makes us reevaluate who we think is capable of change and of our compassion. Can a former inmate a murderer be rehabilitated? Is there goodness in a drug addict? You'll have to read this to judge for yourself. My only complaint, the sadness and hopelessness in the book went on a little too long.
The characters in this book (accomplice to murder released from prison after 25 years, his awful brother, a woman who loves him for no apparent reason, the daughter of a drug addict who lives next door) were a little bit too pathetically made me feel bad to read about them. I skimmed through part of the middle, the story moved verrrrry slowly.
Very unsettling. Not a relaxing read, but a very good book.
Suzanne Auckerman
Her books are always full of tension, tense people, tensions between people, They are exhausting to read. I never really understood the main character. It is about Gordon Loomis, who killed a pregnant woman when he was a teenager and served 25 years in prison. He has gotten out and his adjustment to life "outside".
Morris tells the sad story of a man who was in prison for 25 years for a questionable murder. He makes the choice to stay at his family's home in town that has been infested with crime, drugs and unique characters. Morris is a great writer whose details and characterization are vivid and realistic. Another great read!
I'm about 75 pages in and so far I am really enjoying this read. I've read her other novels and they were terrific. Now finished - a very quick read. I think the characters needed more development - I didn't feel like I really understood their motivations The plot was also rather predictatable. Still, a worthwhile read.
Jan 23, 2010 Abby rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Abby by: others by the author
I wish I could give this 3.5 stars. Hard to get into but worth it in the end. A fellon just getting out, his "girlfriend" and the lost kid down the street all struggle to find their place in modern life. Heartbreaking. I need a light read after this.
Abby Jean
warning: this book is pretty sad. nobody gets redeemed or turns things around and although there's some "finding beauty and comfort in what you have" ness, there's not a lot of hope in it. also beware themes/depictions of animal cruelty.
This author has a gift. She gently draws you in, gets in your blood, and touches in tender places. The characters are outcasts caught in the futility of life, yet they touch your heart. It's a tough read but so worth it.
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As the author of several novels, Mary McGarry Morris has received considerable attention from critics and readers, as well as from prestigious awards panels.
Her books are noted for their depictions of mentally and emotionally impaired individuals who have difficulty coping with an inhospitable world.
As New York Times Book Review contributor Alice McDermott put it, “Morris does not devise plots,
More about Mary McGarry Morris...
Songs in Ordinary Time The Lost Mother Light from a Distant Star A Dangerous Woman Fiona Range

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