Are there any Good People in this book?

The Good People by Hannah Kent

Mo the cat reviews Hannah Kent's The Good People
Mo the cat reviews Hannah Kent's The Good People

A review by Mo the cat's owner

Mo may not have liked this book... but he is a cat, after all!  My take on the book is slightly different.

The Good People is beautifully written: dark and haunting. It stays with you long after you've finished reading, like an echo on the back of your palate. I've experienced similar aftertastes when reading other books and that hasn't always been a good thing. Sometimes that aftertaste is more like reflux. But on this occasion the book has left me feeling thoughtful.  And so very sad.

I am incredibly impressed by the depth of research that must have been involved. It reads like a window into another time, detailed right down to the vernacular. The sounds and look of the poor Irish village in which the novel is set are vivid; the village is described so clearly that you can almost smell it. It is written from the perspective of an echelon of society that the history books often ignore. This book is not about the lives of kings or queens, it's about common people. Kent creates sympathies that are sometimes surprising to the reader, developing characters carefully and comprehensively.

Is it true to say that there are no good people in the book? The genius of this novel is that the nature of "good" itself is brought into question. What convicts a human being - is it their actions? Word? Thought? The courts? Belief? It's up to you to read the book and try to answer these questions for yourself.

If you haven't yet read The Good People, YPRL has it in print, as an eBook, eAudio or as an audiobook. Plenty of options to tempt you.

Read The Good People because it's amazing. But don't expect that it will leave you peacefully.

We welcome your respectful and on-topic comments and questions in this public forum. To find out more, please see Appropriate Use When Posting Content. Community-contributed content represents the views of the user, not those of Yarra Plenty Regional Library