By Joel Thomas Hynes
“Scrappy tough guy and three-time loser Johnny Keough is going a little stir-crazy awaiting trial for an alleged assault charge involving his girlfriend, Madonna, and a teapot. Facing three to five years in a maximum-security prison, Johnny knows this might just be the end of the road. But when Madonna doesn’t show up for court due to a fatal accident, shell-shocked Johnny seizes his unexpected “clean slate” as a sign from above and embarks on an epic hitchhiking journey across Canada to deliver her ashes to a fabled beach on the outskirts of Vancouver.” … Summary by Amazon
What Happened at Book Club …
Joel Thomas Hynes’ We’ll All Be Burnt In Our Beds Some Night is the perfect warm and fuzzy holiday read for our last book club of 2017 …. ok not exactly warm and fuzzy.
Our protagonist Johnny Keough, is a skeet if there ever was one. It is his voice we hear througout the novel, a voice switching between first and third person, a voice that’s always angry, often funny and filled with so many fucks and other ‘colourful’ language it would make a good drinking game (take a drink every time Johnny says Fuck or some version of).
As expected opinions on this book was mixed. Some found the unending graphic language and crude descriptions, long paragraphs and random changes in narration exhausting. Others loved the writing and the author’s ability to bring Johnny so vividly to life for us. We were rooting for Johnny despite his being an asshole, we could smell him in Pius’ sweaty suit, and visualize his unwashed, tattooed, sun burned, red ant bitten body standing on the side of the road in the rain holding Madonna (no wonder Missus at the motel gave him the nod – what a prize!).
In addition to a great discussion we got surprises! Genuine tapped maple sweets and bath bombs for everyone and a little piano serenade. A grand old time. See you all next year wormies!