The Wig My Father Wore
By (author) Anne Enright
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Wig My Father Wore by Anne Enright
Book DescriptionIt was a tough, wiry wig with plenty of personality. It rode around on his head like an animal. It was a vigorous brown. I was very fond of it as a child. I thought that it liked me back.' Anne Enright's extraordinary first novel is narrated by Grace, a TV producer, whose life is transfigured when she answers the door to a fully-fledged angel. Stephen was a bridge-builder in Canada before he killed himself, but now that he has come to stay with Grace he spends the night hanging by the neck in her shower, to help himself think. Needless, to say, she falls in love, moving steadily from the spiritual to the anatomical. Meanwhile as her TV day job on the 'Love Quiz' begins to spiral out of control, on the other side of her life is her father, benign, bewigged and stricken by a stroke -apparently mad but probably the sanest person in her life. As the three worlds meet and merge in a forest of contradictions, we watch Grace take the pacific path from cynicism to innocence, as all around her the novel thinders to a conclusion.
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Book DetailsISBN: 9780749397159
(198mm x 125mm x 14mm)
Publisher: Vintage Publishing
Publish Date: 29-Jan-1996
Country of Publication: United Kingdom
Books By Author Anne Enright
Green Road, Paperback (May 2016)
"With language so vibrant it practically has a pulse, Enright makes an exquisitely drawn case for the possibility of growth, love and transformation at any age." -People
Don't Let's Go to the Dogs Tonight, Paperback (January 2015)
With an introduction by Anne Enright.
Making Babies, Paperback (May 2013)
"One of the best books ever on the experience of being a mother."-Boston Sunday Globe
Forgotten Waltz, Paperback (March 2012)» View all books by Anne Enright
Shortlisted for The Orange Prize for Fiction If it hadn't been for the child then none of this might have happened. She saw me kissing her father. She saw her father kissing me. The fact that a child got mixed up in it all made us feel that it mattered, that there was no going back.
US Kirkus Review » Irish novelist Enright ("What Are You Like?", 2000) offers another unusual tale notable for both its lovely language and its mere suggestion of a plot. Up until the moment of Stephen's arrival, Grace leads a fairly conventional life. She has a steady job that she doesn't particularly like, siblings she doesn't get on with, a tiresome mother, and a father struck down by a stroke. Although the beautiful Stephen doesn't change any of those things, his mere presence is a miracle: he's an angel. He killed himself in 1934 and like all other suicides has been sent to earth to help those in need. Grace can't imagine why she was chosen, since her life is fine (or is it?), but with Stephen sleeping in her bed every night, she's not about to complain. Not that her repeated attempts at seduction bear any fruit: Stephen answers to a higher power than his angelic libido and takes up other tasks around the house, mainly painting everything white. He effects subtle differences in the lives of all he touches (a womanizing co-worker of Grace's suddenly falls in love with his own wife), but in Grace's more than anyone else's. She begins a journey through memory that brings her back to her father and the eponymous hairpiece. As a child she considered his toupee friendly, a sort of pet, but as she grew she realized the absurdity of the brown, poorly made piece of horsehair perched atop his head. After two strokes, Grace's father lingers in the front parlor speaking gibberish, making a reunion difficult. Yet her attempt is miracle enough, his lack of coherent speech hardly an obstacle. Enright's own language is wry and fluid, but the story itself is a shadowy thing: too much light, and it will disappear altogether. Not for all tastes, then, but those with a penchant for the delicate and subtle will relish it. (Kirkus Reviews)
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Author Biography - Anne Enright
Anne Enright was born in Dublin. She is the author of a collection of stories, The Portable Virgin, which won the Rooney Prize, and three novels, The Wig My Father Wore, What Are You Like? which was shortlisted for the Whitbread Novel Award and won the Encore Award, and The Pleasure of Eliza Lynch. Her non-fiction book, Making Babies, was published in 2004.
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