On a promontory jutting out into the Atlantic wind stands the Home run by Brother Benedict, where boys are taught a little of God and a lot of fear. To Michael Lamb, one of the youngest brothers, the regime is without hope, and when he inherits a small legacy he defies his elders and runs away, taking with him a twelve-year-old boy, Owen Kane. Radio Eireann call it a kidnapping. For Michael the act is the beginning of Owen's salvation. Posing as father and son, they concentrate on discovering the happiness that is so unfamiliar to them both. But as the outside world closes in around them - as time, money and opportunity run out - Michael finds himself moving towards a solution that is as uncompromising as it is inspired by love.
A first novel of integrity and power
The alert and feeling realism of MacLaverty's story...had a rare purity of intention and texture... a deeply humane first novel
To deal convincingly with innocence and the impossibility of innocence without being falsely naive...is a special gift, and Bernard MacLaverty displays it with great skill
A performance of great assurance and tenderness