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Some Great Thing

3.15  ·  Rating details ·  96 Ratings  ·  9 Reviews
Jerry McGuinty is a simple, self-made builder who claims he can plaster a wall that will change your life. Simon Struthers is a disaffected businessman who proves the old adage about money and happiness. Together they face the new Ottawa of the seventies: brash, bright, and ready for the taking.

With their different careers and successes, these two strangers seek to carve o
Paperback, 416 pages
Published April 18th 2005 by Mariner Books (first published March 26th 2004)
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Sep 10, 2009 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: jeez-louise, canada
Finally. I have finished this bloody book. It took me, I think, three weeks. And I can't explain why. It was well written (most of the time), there WAS a storyline, the characters were quite original and should be interesting but for some reason I didn't care at all. Maybe you have to be Canadian to feel this book. Or maybe it was the wrong phase of the Moon. Or who knows. I only became somewhat interested in it around page 230. But I think I can describe the whole experience as 'meh'. Which is ...more
Jul 21, 2017 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Really disappointing..I think all the glowing reviews must have been for another book.Meandered along about relationships and Canadian property development.Read over 200 pages and just couldn't get onto it.
Dec 30, 2007 rated it liked it
Recommends it for: people interested in housing development, Canada, Ottawa specifically
I picked up this book while in Ottawa for two Canadian dollars (and the way our economy is headed, next week, the looney will be worth more than any George Washington.) Anyhow, it was on the bargain bin at a Chapters there (which is much like Borders in the states only they play Neon Bible in it's entirety. I gave it my good old random passage test which, as any avid reader will be sure to know, means turning to a random page and if the paragraph is worthy, you chance the book. The paragraph I r ...more
Katherine Govier
Aug 08, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition

I lovd this book! Unusual, energetic, funny, sad. Thought the portrayal of Kathleen particularly poignant, and sort of textbook around
women and alcoholism and what it does to a family. (Hope that wasn't a spoiler! She drinks heavily from p 1.) Great about civil service and Ottawa mandarins - I hope Colin McAdam publishes another book soon.
L Denis
This book spurred complicated reactions in me. Part of me admires the author for capturing such a raw dialogue between his characters, yet I found it choppy and difficult to follow, and in several instances far too long. It's a great character sketch of some interesting people, however unlikeable they all were to me. I'm glad I read it, but I don't think I'd recommend it to my book friends.
Mar 18, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
it was a surprisingly good book. I started it and thought the beginning was mediocre, but when I got half way through I was so lost in the connection between characters and how they change into people you never thought they were. I couldn't stop reading it.
Dec 28, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
I am stunned at the library w ratings on Goodreads. This is one of the best Canadian novels I have ever read - up with "No Great Mischief" and "The Danger Tree". Not much more that I can say, but I would highly recommend this book.
D Gibson
Aug 18, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I loved this book and I don't really know why. The author's writing was incredible (even if you don't like it) as it completely transports you to another world...a sign of a great book!
L. C.
May 29, 2016 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Took a while to get interested and for a while it was an enjoyable read. Near the end I found myself skimming pages just to finish.
Lisa Ash
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Aug 16, 2011
Cynan Jones
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Jan 03, 2014
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Jun 22, 2009
Ed Nascondo
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Caleb Smith
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Colin McAdam was born in Hong Kong and grew up in Denmark, England and Barbados, as well as in several cities in Canada. He studied English and Classics at McGill University and the University of Toronto, and received his PhD in English Literature from Cambridge University in England.

He has written for Harper's Magazine and The Walrus. He lives in Montreal and has a son named Charlie who lives in
More about Colin McAdam...

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