On a rainy day in Dublin, during the spring of 1947, a tragic accident brought devastation to those involved. As the subsequent years pass, unable to come to terms with the accident, the survivors set the path for a deeply troubled future for each generation that followed.
Jonathan Melton had a traumatic childhood in which he ended up in foster care, but when he meets the wild, willful, sexually experienced and free spirited Sophia at university, everything changes. At first inept with women, Jonathan’s complex relationship with Sophia evolves from a one-way obsession into a genuine love and shared passion, as the relationship brings happiness, romance and joy to both their lives that neither thought was ever possible. The two marry, and Sophia gives birth to their first child; a beautiful baby daughter. Everything is seemingly perfect, until the evening that their tiny baby is found dead in her cot.
As his world falls apart around him, Jonathan slips into a dark depression and, increasingly haunted by his past, becomes distant and dysfunctional as he struggles to cope with the loss of his daughter. His marriage to Sophia disintegrates, and Jonathan along with it as he descends further into darkness after leaving Sophia. Although his close friend David succeeds to some extent in saving him from his demons, Jonathan remains a lost and lonely soul, until his apparent chance meeting with the enigmatic Maolíosa in a Dublin bar. Maolíosa and Jonathan form a unique bond, and she challenges his vision of life and the world around him. Fate intervenes, but it ultimately leads Jonathan to redemption, and a final resolution to the aftermath and consequences of the 1947 tragedy.
Inspired by the timeless film, It’s a Wonderful Life, Dublin in the Rain provides a sweeping narrative of love, desire and misfortune, spanning the thirty years of Jonathan Melton’s life. Andrew Critchley’s witty and complex characters reveal how a painful familial legacy can haunt our present and distort our future. Moving and magical, Dublin in the Rain reminds us that while tragedy can blight our journey, life is still very much what we choose to make it.
Dublin in the Rain is the first of a trilogy of contrasting stories around the theme of redemption by Andrew Critchley.
Andrew Critchley was born in Sheffield, and has lived across Western Europe, now residing in Cardiff, South Wales. Following a successful business career, Critchley took early retirement in 2012 to pursue his dream of becoming a writer. Critchley is presently working on a project that will explore differing perspectives of the tragic Aberfan disaster of 1966. Dublin in the Rain is the first book in a trilogy of contrasting stories around the shared theme of redemption; the second installment is due for release in early 2015.
“Celebrate the past, don't regret it.” ---― Andrew Critchley, Dublin in the Rain
Andrew Critchley, an English author, has spun a spectacular story in his debut novel, Dublin in the Rain, which follows the life of an emotionally-torn man, named, Jonathan Paul Melton.
Synopsis: On a rainy day in Dublin, during the spring of 1947, a tragic accident brought devastation to those involved. As the subsequent years pass, unable to come to terms with the accident, the survivors set the path for a deeply troubled future for each generation that followed. Jonathan Melton had a traumatic childhood in which he ended up in foster care, but when he meets the wild, willful, sexually experienced and free spirited Sophia at university, everything changes. At first inept with women, Jonathan’s complex relationship with Sophia evolves from a one-way obsession into a genuine love and shared passion, as the relationship brings happiness, romance and joy to both their lives that neither thought was ever possible. The two marry, and Sophia gives birth to their first child; a beautiful baby daughter. Everything is seemingly perfect, until the evening that their tiny baby is found dead in her cot. As his world falls apart around him, Jonathan slips into a dark depression and, increasingly haunted by his past, becomes distant and dysfunctional as he struggles to cope with the loss of his daughter. His marriage to Sophia disintegrates, and Jonathan along with it as he descends further into darkness after leaving Sophia. Although his close friend David succeeds to some extent in saving him from his demons, Jonathan remains a lost and lonely soul, until his apparent chance meeting with the enigmatic Maolíosa in a Dublin bar. Maolíosa and Jonathan form a unique bond, and she challenges his vision of life and the world around him. Fate intervenes, but it ultimately leads Jonathan to redemption, and a final resolution to the aftermath and consequences of the 1947 tragedy.
Growing up in a broken up home, Jonathan not only faces emotional insecurity but also haunted by his past. Getting a chance to love someone and to be loved by someone in his fragile life, Jonathan started seeing life in a better perspective. This woman named Sophia gave him another chance to have a better life. Soon they are married, but their happiness was not long-living. Tragedy stoke again, when their new-born baby dies unexpectedly. Following which Jonathan started drinking away his pain and in his worst moments, he met another woman who challenges him and gave him a new hope to lead a better life.
Jonathan's story has no happiness. Only pain- deep, raw and gripping pain! From the very first page, my heart started to well up, and as Jonathan moved on to his life gradually, I got accustomed with him more personally. I felt like it was my story and at times, I so felt like Jonathan.
The author's writing is absolutely brilliant and his lyrical prose draws you into the story. The author has made his story very engaging and I felt the protagonist had a strong voice and with such an arresting narration, I felt more hooked into the core of the story. The author has a deep psychological grip on his characters, which are portrayed as multifaceted, flawed and sympathetic human beings, who are all achingly vulnerable and all wracked by fear, need and guilt.
I found some unnecessary part in the book. Well the chemistry between Jonathan and Sophia is very charged, heated and the author has described it way too passionately, but I felt that their intricate sexual encounters could have been spared for his readers! So that disappointed me a lot!
The author has written about all kind of emotions with great vividness. I mean it's very rare that you come across a book which depicts the right emotions at the right times, mind it! This book is one of the rarest of rare gem, which is not only an emotional, painful journey of a man to know his soul but also a poignant tale about love and mystery! Yes, there is a mystery and the author has delivered it quite strikingly. I mean with such a climax, I can only say that I hardly came across such a compelling novel which brings out all kinds of emotions within me!
Verdict: A brilliant debut literary novel and you surely can't miss out this one.
Courtesy: Thanks to the author, Andrew Critchley, for providing me with a copy of his book, in return for an honest and unbiased review.
‘Dublin in the Rain’ is a wonderful coming-of-age novel about a young Englishman, Jonathan Melton who must circumvent several challenges to find a true purpose in his life. The novel touches upon several themes, the most overriding one being that of redemption, not only from the shackles of the past but also whatever (or whoever) is not a part of your life in the present. The novel is about celebrating what’s gone and looking at the future with hope and faith, something that the author reminds us towards the end, when he says it was ‘hope’ that came out last from Pandora ’s Box. As also elsewhere, where he introduces the concept of ‘Vergangenheitsbewältigung’, which in German means ‘coming to terms with the past’.
The novel is about a boy, many may find a parallel with— Jonathan Melton is a product of a broken family and grows up feeling dejected and abandoned by his parents. As a child, Jonathan or J.P., as he comes to be known, feels deprived of parental love and ends up developing a deep rooted hatred towards his mother. His foster family and the love they dole out on him help little and even as an adult, now a student of Sheffield University, he is rather reclusive and finds it difficult to have meaningful relationships with women. It is not until J.P. meets his alter ego, Sophia that his life starts to look up. Sophia offers the much needed reprieve to his aimless wanderings and her love serves to ground him, in life and at work. They get married and everyone is happy for a while until the birth of the couple’s first daughter and her subsequent death from SIDS. Following this incident, J.P. goes through a difficult phase of depression and alienates himself from his wife. Much like any of us, he hits rock bottom and must now work hard to find fulfilment. Not the one to give up so easy, he tries to find happiness in sexual escapades with other women, as also work that’ll take him away from home. It is at this point that he meets a wilfully single and very spirited, Maoliosa at a bar in Dublin (well, the author does introduce her at the beginning of the story, but it is not until the end that she comes to play a part in his life). Question is, would he find a direction in his life and a sense of purpose? More importantly, will he be able to move on or remain stuck in the phantoms of his past? Does he have it in him to forgive people who he thinks have harmed him? Does he have it in him to look at his future with a sense of hope?
The story has been written straight from the heart. There are some explicit scenes in the novel which I quite enjoyed, although there are many who have a different opinion. For me, these scenes just helped to reinforce J.P.’s closeness with the women in his life. The characterisation is brilliant and the author has done full justice to multiple characters he introduces. I did feel some incidents could have been clipped and probably there were a few pages that seemed like padding, but that’s just me. For me, numerous references to his playing cricket slowed down the story. What definitely worked for me best was the ending. Totally agree when the author quotes D H Lawrence here: The dead don’t die. They look on and help. So it is for the dead, so it is for bygone events. Everything happens for a reason. The ending was so superb, I’m tempted to read the novel all over again. All in all a great read. Thoroughly enjoyed it.
First of all a huge thanks to the author for sharing his work with me and it had been a wonderful reading experience
The book was like watching somebody grow up right in front of me. Watching somebody go through the troughs and crests of his life, while doing and learning from his mistakes
Undoubtedly the author is a master story teller. The way he vividly shared the life of a young man is commendable.
The narration is chopped into small blocks, so you can easily go through them without feeling overwhelmed with emotions. The book basically is an emotional roller coaster rather than a fast paced plot. The narration skill basically allows you to live the life of our central character with perfection and it is as if you are standing by the fence watching this young man go through his life
The book at the same time also does suffer because of this as it gets too detailed and slower explaining every stage of the character, but then again that can also arise from the fact that I am not a common visitor to this genre and maybe this is how you put across the life of a person.
I did feel that by the middle of the book, the pace was painfully slow especially when we are introduced to a new character Sophia and her relationship with our central character. Frankly those part of the book carried conversations and language that skipped my brain. Things were going really descriptive and uncomfortable for my taste so much that I feared the book was slipping into another genre completely. I am talking about the detailed narration of our central character's sexual encounters which I thought was really unnecessary as it was way too many and totally deviating from the main plotline
Apart from that the book had a fantastic narration, impressive language and most importantly the characters are so enriched with definite personality traits and individuality that you start to feel accustomed and emotionally attached to each of them which is a huge thing to achieve when writing a book. Overall feel of the book is sort of monotone but it perfectly tugs the right chords of its readers
The book should come with a strong warning that it can make you emotionally vulnerable as the author had worked a great deal to make you go through the psyche of each characters, just as they are in the story
i kept waiting to contemplate why exactly the title goes "Dublin in the Rain" when the entire story is happening in Sheffield, London but it was at the end that i finally understood why and can't deny it was clever.
The book basically is a journey where you get to watch a young boy discover everything from family, friends, love to a meaning for his life. The author is wickedly good at bringing out the emotions of its character and making the readers go through it successfully. The book is intense and high on emotions. The narration skill is amazing and so is the language as far as it not the portions where literary geniuses and their works are discussed because then it goes all cryptic at least for me but those who are Shakespearean/vintage author fans ( wait is that a word ? !! well) would enjoy those portions of the book. To be frank the book may not be of everybody's liking as it can be intense and you need to have an inclination towards this genre but even still I would say it is a great work.
There are books that follow us and stay in a small corner of our head. Of those books that bring a smile on your face every time you look back. Dublin in the rain is definitely one of them.
A book is always a promise. A promise to travel, to dream, to learn…For a moment in time to live a life that is not yours. From the first to the last page, I was literally absorbed by the story; almost living it.
The content is written in a way that is easily understandable by non English people. The style is colourful and rhythmic, as a musical score that beautifully serves the pallet of emotions of this breathless story. So much loved the British caustic and offbeat humour!
The book took me from familiar places like hometown Paris and “le Vieux-Nice” to the forgotten green lawns of the Trinity College in Dublin. It also reminded me those wonderful teenage summers in England in the mid-eighties. The book was a travel in time that made me feel twenty again! At the time of the starting loves…But most of all, the book was a travel with and within the characters; in their lives, in their joys and in their pains. In their evolution as life goes by and sometimes hurts deeply; witnessing how they overcome difficulties and their own barriers to bring out the best. Like a mirror of our own life. The characters outlined by the writer are endearing, sometimes disarming, each with their own quirks. My favourite one is Sophia, a masterpiece of a woman. Lovely, irresistible, puckish and sexy Sophia.
Finally, I want to take the book as a beautiful declaration of love to a woman. I love to believe that the writer could not write such a story, describing Sophia as he did, her romance and complicity with Jonathan, without putting something personal in it....simply beautiful. Opening the book was like opening the door to a parallel world, sometimes feeling shameless of looking through the keyhole of doors that usually remain close. Not only bedroom doors, but also the doors that hide our intimate cracks.
Dublin in the Rain is a brilliant Russian dolls story. The book is about goodwill and hope, with a lovable touch of idealism. It brings something fresh and positive. Like a smile on a face….
I was chosen as the lucky winner of a hardcover copy of this book from the Goodreads First Reads Giveaway promotion.
Never having heard of this author, or really knowing what this book was about, I was up for giving it a read. I will read anything and as has been proven with this book, sometimes the best reads come unexpectedly.
**This review contains spoilers**
Jonathan Melton is at the center of this tale. It begins with his unhappy childhood and his desertion by his mother. His father commits suicide and he ends up moving in with a friend's family.
The reader is drawn into Jonathan's world and you cannot help but feel sorry for his unhappy childhood. As a mother myself, I felt appalled that his mother did not fight harder to keep him with her when her marriage failed. I felt Jonathan's pain when his mother had a new baby and he sees that her life is steadily moving further and further away from him.
Once living with David and his family on their farm on weekends and attending school through the week, Jonathan finds a small measure of happiness and realizes that not all families are unhappy and broken. He finds an outlet for his energies in playing tennis and cricket.
When he and David go off to University Jonathan is still shy and awkward, while David is an outgoing and social extrovert. It is at University that Jonathan meets and falls in love with Sophia.
Their courtship is portrayed beautifully (with the exception of some crude and gratuitous sex scenes) and the reader is drawn into their relationship. You can't help rooting for Jonathan to win her heart and for them to somehow live happily ever after.
Jonathan is portrayed as ernest and lovable while still being vulnerable and genuine. The kind of man/boy that mothers would be thrilled to have their daughters end up with. But, not so wholesome as to be a turn off to the girl herself.
Sophia feels like an outcast in her own family. She is nothing like her two older sisters. They are happy and content with having very little education (both dropped out of school at age 16.) Sophia wants more from her life.
Eventually Sophia accepts Jonathan's marriage proposal. They are blissfully happy and soon have a baby daughter.
As always, nothing good can last forever and tragedy strikes the happy couple. What follows is a few years of despair and drinking for Jonathan.
The author has achieved the near impossible - that of keeping the reader sympathetic to a main character when, just as easily, the reader could become disgusted with him.
"Bah, celebrate the past, don't regret it. Utter bloody poppycock more like, if you ask me. My Dad topped himself, my mother abandoned me, my baby died from cot death and I caught my loving wife being poked by someone else on an office desk. What's there to celebrate in all that bloody crap?"
Eventually, Jonathan meets a woman named Maoliosa in a hotel bar in Dublin. It is soon after that brief encounter that he decides to change his life and to start living again. "There's so much that is good in the world. Why do we have to make our lives so complicated?"
More trials face Jonathan as he continues his life's journey, but eventually he finds a way to put the past behind him and to move on.
The conclusion will surprise you.
All in all, this was an enjoyable read and a highly entertaining novel.
I was given this book to review in exchange for an honest review. As I always do, I didn't look and any previous comments other than the book jacket. I always prefer to formulate my own unbiased thoughts of a book.
About the book: This book revolves the life of Jonathan Melton. We are taken through the ups and massives downs of a torn individual. As his life spirals out of control, we see that this man has no clue what he is missing out on in life. For every step forward, you see him take one to two steps back. It takes an accident for Jonathan to realize that if he wants to move on with life, he needs to seize life by the reigns and control what is out of control. (I can't really tell you much other than this, I will ruin a perfectly good book for y'all!)
There has only been a small handfull of books that have made me actually gasp out loud. I was actually grabbing my chest and just saying, OH MY GOD!, over and over again. This book had made this woman who rarely cries, cry at least three times. When I finally put the pieces together, I was yelling OH MY GOD!
I don't know what provoked Mr. Critchley to write this story. If this was a biographical story, then I want to say, "you have lived and loved some remarkable people." If this is a product of imagination, then I want to say, "I want to live in your head!" No matter what, this was one of the most touching stories I have read in a very long time.
I personally related with Jonathan in so many ways. The way he dealth with his father and mother was like looking in a mirror. Then there is the love of his life and how he struggles with dealing with some harsh realities. I personally have been in these shoes and know how hard it is...he handled them almost the same way I did. The friendships that Jonathan formed over his life are exactly the same as the friends in my life...the most wonderful and loving people I could know.
In conclusion, this was such a remarkable story of a man trying find himself in life. It's such a gripping story that you can't put it down. You will find yourself celebrating along with Jonathan at times. Then at times, you will want to just reach out and slap some sense into this stubborn man. I'm not a mushy story kinda gal, but I will tell you this...I was turned to mush by this book. Exceptional story!
This entire review has been hidden because of spoilers.
"I received this book for free through Goodreads First Reads"
Wow . . . Dublin in the Rain, left me stunned—in the most positive sense and is an interesting tale. One in which I can honestly say, that i have never read anything quite like this before as it held me truly captivated from page one. Critchley has created a captivating and beautifully constructed story line, that is both moving and emotionally charged. The book follows the heart felt touching journey of Jonathan Paul Melton (J.P) moving through life, from boyhood to manhood, experiencing its many highs, but also its heartbreaking lows. It's also quite humourous in places, and i just couldn't stop laughing at faggot racing on the beach (i won't spoil it by saying what it consists of). Critchley has created such well developed chracters for this book, and has interlinked them all in perfect unison, in such a way that there are no un-answered questions that the reader if left pondering over, when they finish the novel.
Truly, a beautifully executed and eloquently written novel, that I look forward with both glee and anticipation, to reading the second and third installments in this triology from Critchley.
I believe that this will strike a chord with each and every reader who has the prilavidge of reading it. A very highly recommendable novel from me, and i quote a must read.
A mesmerizing and all-consuming journey through the lives of complex and multifaceted characters that deeply touched my soul!
Dublin In The Rain is a beautifully executed and eloquently written novel, tracking the lives of cleverly constructed characters, whose personal journeys will strike a chord with each and every reader!
It is a multi-layered, smart and sexy piece of contemporary literature that can be read and interpreted on many different levels. Light, Dark, Paradox, Redemption, Symmetry, Love, Loss, Tragedy, Grief, Friendship, Destiny, Reincarnation, Afterlife....these are just some of the themes that, for me, run rife throughout this fascinating and mystical plot.
Never have I come across a novel, so capable of provoking such a roller coaster of highly contrasting emotions. As a reader, I found myself on my own emotional journey, experiencing delight, despair, warmth, frustration, hope, sorrow, relief, panic, paranoia, confusion - occasionally all at the same time. I laughed out loud, I shed a tear, I screamed at the page, I cringed, I slammed the book down in utter horror and smiled profusely as the mystery unfolds and the pieces of the puzzle finally come together.
For me, Dublin In The Rain is real page-turner that you just cannot put down. The beauty and strength of the novel is that it creates a unique reading experience for each and every individual, the characters, events and magical climax are completely open to interpretation and it raises thought provoking questions about life, love and humanity.
A story that you'll want to read again and again!!!
This is an excellent modern day book. I normally prefer classical English literature but the book by Andrew Critchley works and work very well indeed. His prose is economical but never dull and the dialogue is quite mesmerising at times - particularly between the lead character Jonathan and the woman he falls in love with, Sophia.
Although initially unconvinced by the first person, past tense narrative (beyond the initial prologue, for some strange reason called a Preface), it undeniably works as the book progresses as one has the sense of the story unfolding before you as a reader as it does for the lead character in the book.
The ending was a tad transparent but it seems a little churlish to comment so since the emotional resonance created by Andrew Critchley's excellent characterisation made this relatively unimportant.
Heartbreakingly sad at times whilst at others, very funny and sexy in turn, the over riding sense of the book is one of celebration of human frailty and an almost overwhelming sense of happiness at the final ending.
As a book to lose yourself in whilst on vacation, I have read little better from a modern day author. Bravo...and highly recommended!
Rating: 4.75/5 Should this book be picked up? the tl;dr spoiler-less version: -Dynamic and compelling characters with a dialogue-driven narrative. -Seamlessly integrates issues like: divorce, alternative family, sexuality, substance abuse, and death. -The power in this story comes from self-reflection and redemption; for the characters and as a reader. -Multiple scenes with sexual context that may deter readers. -I'd argue this book can be suited for mature young-adults as it's a true contemporary fiction at its core.
Initial Thoughts: Full disclosure: I received a copy of Dublin in the Rain through Goodreads First Reads. -- So thanks to Andrew and Goodreads for arranging this.
Truthfully, I didn’t know what to expect from reading this novel. The synopsis and prologue are both striking in setting the tone of the quintessential shit hitting the fan of what is otherwise known as life. There’s so many angles to this book that I guess I have to let my review speak for my inability to detail initial thoughts.
Disclaimer: Potential spoilers inherent to this review from here onward.
It has been a couple of days since I finished reading Dublin in the Rain and I’m still trying to decide what I think of it. I don’t mind reading other people’s reviews as I don’t let them influence me but I find that everyone before me has given it 5 stars both on Goodreads and on Amazon. I know that not every book is for every reader and this one was not for me.
The story opened with two accidental deaths that left a young boy with no parents. He then grew up with his grandmother who was not a nice person, making him a sad, confused, unhappy adult who in turn created a confused son who was ultimately the male protagonist of this story. Jonathan Paul Melton, hated his mother because she could no longer handle living with his father. He adored his father who spent little time with him and ultimately left him on his own.
J.P., as he was known, was adopted and raised by his best friend’s family (David being the best friend) where he received the love he so wanted. When he met Sophia, the love of his life, they were both university students who loved literature and quoting their favorite authors.
This is where I find fault with the story, the sex was often (great!) and quite detailed (not great). The whole middle of the book had them jumping into bed almost constantly and I felt it verged on pornography. I am not adverse to reading stories with sex in them I just don’t think they need to be this detailed. I felt it was a distraction to the real story. Or, perhaps it drug it out too long. I don’t know.
As in all love stories, there are trials that break the loving couples apart before they can have their “happily ever after”. The trial here was the loss of a child. The loss drove a wedge between J.P. and Sophia that brought about acts of revenge by both of them.
The story, in the beginning was intriguing and I couldn’t wait to see where it was going to go. Once the story changed to J.P. and his family I found I didn’t care much about them. It wasn’t until the final pages when everything was tied together that I found interest in the story again but then I was glad it was over.
After dealing with abandonment and his father's suicide, Jonathan Melton joins his friend's family. They take him in as one of their own. David, the family's son, and Jonathan head off to the same university. Everything changes when he meets Sophia. He falls deeply for her and they marry. When Sophia and Jonathan have a baby girl, everything seems perfect. Then everything changes. Their daughter dies unexpectedly and Jonathan begins drinking away his pain. He shuts out everyone and takes off. When Jonathan is at his worst, he meets someone. This someone makes him think, who helps him to see hope, and who gives him a reason to be happy.
I really enjoyed this book. It was beautifully written and brings out a lot of emotion. Jonathan is a very strong and stubborn man. From a young age he discovered what it was like living with an alcoholic and feeling unwanted. That scarred him as he grew up. He resented his mother. After he hits rock bottom later, he tries to run away from all of this problems. He lives in the past but I love how when he meets Maoliosa, she helps him see things from a different point of view. The ending was fantastic, I loved it. I really enjoyed reading this book.
I received a copy of this book for free through Goodreads First Reads.
As a man, JP is as masculine, chivalrous, handsome, amorous, experienced, savvy, perceptive, dense, industrious, smart, dimwitted, and manly as any man could expect and of course this is expected because this story is written from a man’s point of view. But Sophie is beautiful, womanly, naive, sexy, girly, tempered, soft, seductive and just strong enough to make every woman love her, envy her, admire her and know that a part of her is her…this is surprising because again it is written in a man’s voice ~ so how could this be so. The twist and turns made me tear and almost cry. NO SPOILERS but I went to sleep melancholy because of total absorption in this story. I am enamored with this writer and I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE Dublin in the Rain.
I don't usually enjoy fictional autobiographies but this novel kept me gripped and interested right until the end. It is very powerfully written and does deliver a lot of insights into the way the central character is able to endure just about everything life can throw at him. It seems a very honest, authentic work and is very good on human decency and the redemptive powers of friendship. I would recommend it and I'm am now looking forward to the second of the trilogy.
I received this book from Goodreads First Reads Giveaway.
All I can say is Wow! I haven't read a story like this in a long time. It left me stunned, it was so emotional and heartfelt. I felt as though I was transported to a different place, I grew and evolved with the characters and am now so sad to see it come to an end. I highly recommend this book.
I received this book from its author via Goodreads Giveaways. To write about redemption and forgiveness is a risky game, but in this case it has been an inspiring reading, a door that leads to reflection in the attitude when facing adversity and obstacles that life puts you ahead. We all have been JP Melton. Some have made different choices. As a bonus, the constant references to the British and Irish literature and such graphic narrative about the streets of the city of Dublin are delightful.
I do not regret having tried my luck with Mr. Critchley. I hope to read new material from him soon.
------------- Recibí este libro de manera gratuita de manos de su autor a través de Goodreads Giveaways. Es arriesgado escribir sobre la redención y el perdón, pero en este caso resulta una lectura inspiradora, una puerta a la refexión sobre la actitud ante las adversidades y los obstáculos que la vida te pone por delante. Todos alguna vez hemos sido JP Melton. Algunos hemos tomado decisiones diferentes. Como añadido, las continuas referencias a la literatura Británica e Irlandesa son una delicia, así como la gráfica narrativa sobre las calles de la ciudad de Dublin.
No me arrepiento de haber probado suerte con Mr. Critchley. Espero poder volver a leer nuevo material pronto.
Dublin in the Rain by Andrew Critchley with its captivating and beautifully constructed story line is the moving and emotionally charged journey of Jonathan Paul Melton as he moves through life, from boyhood to manhood, experiencing its many highs but also its heartbreaking lows.
Born into a loving, caring and financially comfortable family, Jonathan’s early years were happy and care free but all that changed forever as his parents marriage disintegrated, his mother abandoned him and his father eventually commits suicide.
Life, first at boarding school and later at university, brought a new family, new friends, and the love of his life, Sophie Chatterley.
With marriage to Sophie and the birth of a daughter, life seemed rosy and full of promise, but, everything changed when tragedy struck.
Will Jonathan ever be able to come to terms with the past and move forward into the future? Is redemption possible?
I simply loved this novel. With its many fascinating characters and totally absorbing plot, it made me laugh, shed a tear and kept me completely engrossed all the way through.
Dublin in the Rain comes highly recommended. Happy reading everyone!
This is a gem of a book. The characters are truly authentic and you root for them every step of the way. I was so gripped that I even got up at 5am one morning so that I could get longer to read.
Although the author deals with some serious themes, he handles them with light hands and the highs are terrifically high. It tells all so if you prefer having some things left to the imagination then this might not be for you.
My only tiny niggle is that I didn't love the first chapter as much as the rest of the book, but I will forgive this small oversight due to the quality of the rest of the novel.
In today's society where we read a lot of novels about Vampires, Demons, Fairies, shifters and such this was a refreshingly different type of book. It follows the main character through the ups and downs of his life. It is very down to earth and i feel most people can relate to some of the things in this book. If you are looking for a down to earth book that is a story about real life things with a happy ending you have found it. Andrew has done a fantastic job with this book and i would highly recommend it.
I absolutely loved this story about Jonathan Melton. It touched my heart. The book is beautifully written. The story is characterized by gripping narrative and deep emotional impact. It is permeated with irony/lofty ideas/strong feelings. The author has dealt with some very heavy issues, yet, has done so with empathy and created a story that isn't one big, depressing tear-jerker. Everything is realistically portrayed. I highly recommend you to read it.
From the very beginning, Dublin in the Rain makes a fateful grab at your heart and will not let go. The prologue sets the stage for the array of emotions in which one may expect to be immersed, ranging from the blossoming of young love to the heart-rending grief of the loss of all one holds dear, to learning to survive a childhood of cold indifference after such a loss.
I was out of breath after only this first foreshadowing of things to come!
Trying to anticipate the relation between the horrific incidents of the past, as outlined in the prologue, and the characters' lives, was completely aggravating in the most delicious way!
A glimpse here, a tidbit there or a tantalizing clue as to the "butterfly affect" of that past, so deftly woven into the fabric of the story, made sure that I wouldn't put it down until the very end.
Our protagonist, Jonathan Melton, began his idyllic life in the perfect, love filled home, with parents who were very much in love. With a father who suffered emotional incapacitation and resulting bouts of depression and drinking, the eventual outcome was, of course, a broken marriage, with Jonathan remaining in the custody of his father.
It is during this interim that Jonathan discovers his mother has "gone on with her life" and begun a relationship with someone else. This is also the first time the reader is shown a hint of how past and present are connected, with the introduction of Annie, the housekeeper who befriended him for a time.
Young Jonathan resonates with me as, not unlike a million other people in this day and age, I recognize the piteous state if mind that befalls the child of a broken home. True to form, Jonathan is vulnerable at this age, because of his love for both of his parents. It is obvious that he wants nothing more than for them to set aside their differences; this will never be forthcoming, and so, under his father's influence and his own pain for his mother's absence, Jonathan breaks, basically, and turns against his mither.
The rift is great. So great that, when his father dies (and although we, dear readers, already guess, the recognition of his suicide is not admitted until later), Jonathan indicates to his mother that going to live with her is the most distasteful thing he can contemplate. The family of his closest mate, David, have offered to take him in, and so it is that the balance of his childhood is spent, once again, in the bosom of a loving family.
Jonathan and David attend University together and from here the story of Jonathan's life takes many twists, turns and backward loops. He "becomes a man" then, eventually, falls in love...many sweet whimsical moments there with his lady love, Sophia!
But Jonathan seems doomed to follow the dysfunctional footsteps of his father. Not only that, but history is bearing down on him and repeating its burden of loss and disillusionment, stubborn self-centredness and self-destruction.
The one character who is, really, only a fleeting presence, is Maoliosa/Melissa, and for the tiniest space of time that she is actually in Jonathan's life, hers is the most key presence of all, in bringing the threads of past, present and future together.
And then our author has the utter nerve to make us really, really like her and then just "disappear" her and leave us hanging!!
I will stop here. No spoilers laid to me!
One note about the intimate scenes in this book: a few readers have been fairly critical of them. I'm not one who enjoys reading graphic descriptions of intimacy, even in the relatively benign instance of the sweetest consummation of marriage.
However, in Dublin in the Rain, there is fair warning that things are about to get a bit steamy...enough warning that I was able to skim past the very few occurances. Also, even though these instances themselves were integral to the story, their description was not so lengthy that sliding over those few paragraphs caused one to miss the truly important parts of the story.
In short, if you don't want to visualize, then you have two or three sentences warning to start flipping to the next page.
Andrew Critchley did a splendid job of developing the characters in this book. Taken in their entirety, theirs could be the stories of most of the people any of us have known throughout life. None are without distinction and I couldn't read even the least person who basically had only a walkthrough, without forming some sort of opinion.
I would like to thank the author for giving me this wonderful opportunity to read his debut novel. As he knows, I also read it aloud to my husband, outside...well, our neighbours were outside as well and they, too, were "all up in the story" as I read!!
I highly recommend Dublin in the Rain, for all the reasons others have stated as well as my own.
Only, man or woman, be sure to have a handkerchief on hand!
'Dublin in the Rain' introduces its readers to a series of believable characters all interlinked to the complex, endearing, lovable and sometimes infuriating JP Melton.
The book is written in easy, short and entertaining chapters that both clearly set the scene and had me as a reader feeling that I was so much part of the scene to the point where I actually wanted to contribute to the dialogue. If this was a film then there would have been many times when I would have been shouting at the TV.
I don't want to give the story away but I think readers will relate to the range of characters in different ways. Although JP is not suffering poverty and materialistic deprivation, he is suffering. What he experiences are life events that could be placed in any social setting and I would expect most readers to relate to his reaction to heartbreak.
The redemption in the story comes from inside the character and the twist in the tale was for me truly unexpected, plausible and so unbelievably heart warming.
From the initial setting of a series of events that take place before the story itself begins, every chapter takes you through a journey. A journey that took me through shock, despair and it was sometimes hard to read through silent tears and sharp intakes of breath. That for me is a good read.
The inclusion of destiny as a theme, a belief in faith and hope that someone somewhere is watching over us adds a feel good factor to the tragedy similar to, albeit far more sexually explicit, 'It's A Wonderful Life'. This combined with the last scene gives the book a very strong cinematic feel.
"I received this book for free through Goodreads First Reads"
I enjoyed this book immensely. However, I felt that it could have been slightly shorter; I nearly stopped reading halfway through because the point that Sophia and Melton were so incandescently happy had been thoroughly established and then some. The discord leveled out the joy, but it took a long time getting there. Also, for an author who writes so descriptively, I would have appreciated a bit more variety in the adjectives. I understand; Sophia was sensual and sumptuous, etc. Just a thought. But really; a very lovely read with gorgeous cover art. Thank you again.