Big girl small town by Michelle Gallen is a women centric story that turned out to be a heavy read.

The book focuses on life of a “full grown woman,” Majella. She seems to be some sort of a stickler for her routine. Though the author doesn’t spell it out loud and clear yet one can see an autistictic character if observed closely. Majella lives in the town of Aghybogey. Though fictional yet there is a lot going on in this town. This town is a world in itself, a distinct lifestyle that’s more guns and blazes.

About the town, Gallen writes, “It was a town in which there was nowhere to hide.” There is volience writ in this small town. “The whole business of bombs and guns and beatings was a dirty business. The attacks and the reprisals.”

The book spans over a week traversing through the routine and thoughts of Majella. I heard this book on LibroFM. The book is narrated by Nicola Coughlan.

When I began listening to the book I realized that I would need to read the ebook alongside because this book is narrated and penned in a heavy Irish accent. That made it difficult to comprehend. I plodded through this book, I would say. As mentioned before, it was initially difficult for me to comprehend this book because of the thick Irish accent. But the multiple characters that weave in and out of Majella’s life also added to the confusion.

As we pass through the narrow alleys of the narrative we see how intricately detailed Majella’s life is. The book picks and presents the nitty-gritties of Majella’s life. These may appear trivial to the naked eyes but these minute details is what makes this powerful character driven book grow on you.

Majella is a recluse, anti-social, sticks to her routine, loves watching Dallas, has an alcoholic mother, her father disappeared years ago and she still yearns for him, her grandmother has been beaten to death, her uncle Bobby was accidentally killed while planting a bomb, she works in a cafe, follows the same routine, and she is in a casual sexual relationship with Marty. Majella lives in a small town and her life reeks of hopelessness and complexities.

Last word – It is certainly going to be difficult for me to forget this queer, undistilled yet unique character of Majella.

Listen to this book on LibroFM –

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