I read this after reading "Tis", but I believe this one was written first. It's a similar type of writing to "Tis", but the child is a bit more innocent, and the family's not as desperate. It's interesting in that it puts you into the child's mind and way of thinking.
A look at the daily exploits and thoughts of a 10-year-old Irish boy. As the story progresses, readers become more and more aware of the anguish that Paddy Clarke is feeling as he becomes conscious of the impending breakup of his parents' marriage. They may find it disconcerting to see the pain he inflicts on others (preferably younger or weaker boys) for the sheer "fun" of it and the dangerous antics of Paddy and his friends. The novel is powerfully written and slowly draws readers into the protagonist's complex personality.
"This novel perfectly captures . . the potency, skewed perceptions, and just plain weirdness of being alive at the age of ten . . . Doyle has created a small, resonant masterpiece. Here, for once, in childhood and childhood's end, done heartbreakingly right." ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY
"A beautifully written book; it may be one of the great modern Irish novels." _Carolyn See, THE WASHINGTON POST