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The Unrivalled Transcendence of Willem J. Gyle

4.08  ·  Rating details ·  12 ratings  ·  12 reviews
Willem has always struggled with the world around him. It has always moved a little too fast for his liking. And now he’s been laid off, his steady, stable life has been shattered.

Only a few days later, Willem also loses his mother, leaving him homeless. With nowhere else to turn, and only his mongrel Jap to comfort him, Willem takes to the streets. Forced to live outsid
Kindle Edition, 169 pages
Published September 2nd 2015
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 ·  12 ratings  ·  12 reviews

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Paula Bardell-Hedley
Nov 13, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Paula by: NetGalley
Shelves: netgalley
Edinburgh - capital of Scotland - a delightful, stimulating, multi-ethnic city, which draws workers and visitors from all corners of the globe. It is the second largest financial centre in the UK, and from its ancient castle overlooking the bustling streets to the wonderful architecture of its Old and New Town, one can see why it was chosen as a Unesco World Heritage Site.

For those who care to look a little closer, however, Edinburgh, like so many beautiful old cities, is notorious for its home
Aug 24, 2017 rated it really liked it
This is a story of our times, a modern tale set in the aftermath of a depression hit Scotland through the eyes of Willem J Gyle.
Willem is a large hulk of a man, a gentle giant who has a fundamental learning difficulty that isn't so obvious to the general populace. He relies on his Mam, she has found him a job labouring and encouraged him to save. Her wisdom and the stories shared with him are his boundaries and insight into the world. He has learned to live within his understanding and has a dis
Judith Barrow
Dec 05, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I finished The Unrivalled Transcendence of Willem J Gyle thinking this has to be made into a film. And I’m ashamed to say I finished the book almost a week ago and have dithered on how to review because the emotion that it has stirred in me prevented a rational and objective/subjective ‘putting down words here’. Which delay does the author, James_D_Dixon, no favours at all, I know.

All I can say is that this is a brilliantly compelling read: the author’s stark but totally gripping style, the twis
Mike Siedschlag
Jan 23, 2018 rated it really liked it
I was given an ecopy of The Unrivalled Transcendence of Willem J. Gyle by James Dixon for review.

This was a somewhat difficult book to read as it has to do with a man's world falling apart around him while he is unable to do much about it.

We are confronted with several unpleasant realities of our world: The lack of empathy for those who have fallen on hard times through no fault of their own. The disdain for the homeless, believing they have chosen that life. People in that state preying upon ea
Sep 20, 2017 rated it really liked it
A gritty and somewhat dark story about Willem, a man who lives in a world limited by his intellectual capabilities. His mam is his lifeline and shelter from the rest of the world who doesn't always see that the large man isn't able to fully function socially on his own. Willem goes to his job every day, the routine of it and making a living his main focus in life. Willem longs for companionship, but often is taken advantage of, except for his mam and his canine friend, Jap.
One day Willem goes t
Dec 05, 2017 rated it really liked it
After reading the blurb for this book I was intrigued, described as lyrical and haunting and the protagonist as having untrammelled anger. How could I resist? My first port of call was finding out the meaning of untrammelled and I was reliable informed that it is someone “not deprived of freedom of action or expression; not restricted or hampered.” This perfectly describes the spiralling mental breakdown of the main character of Willem and the acts of violence he soon begins to carry out.

Elizabeth dixon
Oct 18, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Could not put it down, I had to keep reading until it was finished.

Such an intelligent work, full of compassion and understanding of such a difficult, harsh world in spite of the violence of the language and the actions of the main character.
Jennifer (JC-S)
‘He has never seen anything accurately.’

Willem J. Gyle is a labourer in Edinburgh. He’s big, fit and strong, but his thought processes are slow because of oxygen deprivation during birth. His life has its patterns and routines, and Willem is comfortable. Willem lives in a flat with his Mam and his little dog Jap.

But then Willem is laid off. The building trade is hit by a recession, and the site where Willem works is locked and abandoned. Willem turns up for a few days: he can’t find his Mam, and
Terry Tyler
Oct 28, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Reviewed via an ARC for Rosie Amber's Review Team

What a find. This book is seriously good. I mean, seriously. I'd recommend it to anyone, whatever your usual genres of choice.

Willem J Gyle is a bit slow. But he gets by. He lives with his mother, who takes care of all his needs, including finding him a job on a construction site where he makes the most of his size and strength, and makes friends. He loves his mam, his dog, and the football on the telly. Then, in just a few days, his world comes
Nov 30, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
My blog -

(Disclaimer – I received a copy from the Author. This as always does not affect my review in anyway.)

Review: Don’t know quite how to take this book. I finished it, but there was no emotions involved in it at all. I don’t know whether because the character didn’t really have any emotions, or I just didn’t feel emotional attached to anything in the story. Or maybe that was the whole point. Either way this review is a bit hard to write.

It extremely brutal and doesn’t
Bonnie Gibbs
Feb 13, 2020 rated it really liked it
This is a strikingly beautiful book and an example of very deft and careful characterisation woven into a brutally unflinching landscape. It reflects something very real and is thus heart-breaking in the conclusions that it draws.
I read it in a wide-eyed rush, prepared for something dark but by no means ready to be drawn into such a commentary on the flaws of society in the throes of a depression. It doesn't just give you an insight into the hidden dark parts of Edinborough as I thought it migh
Dec 03, 2017 rated it really liked it
Don’t let the bland cover fool you, this one is a doozy!

The Unrivalled Transcendence of Willem J. Gyle is the story of Willem, a recently-laid-off worker. In the span of a few days he’s lost not only his job, but his mom and his home. What follows is his harrowing descent into homelessness, fighting every day to stay alive and to maintain his sense of self.

See my full review over at RaeleighReads.
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