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Bones (novella) by Pat Murphy
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Bones (novella)

by Pat Murphy

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This short story is about Charlie Bryne, an Irish man of unusual size - about eight foot tall. His mother tells him that he is the son of the King of Ireland - also a giant, who she met in the Giant's Boneyard. The Giant's Boneyard is a field that has large boulders which according to legend are said to be the bones of giants. The King tells Charlie's mother that she will bear him a son that will save Ireland.

Later on in the story, Charlie visits the boneyard and also meets the King who tells him to go to London and bring the Irish back home to their land. Charlie travels to Dublin and meets Joe Vance who sees Charlie as a way to make a lot of money - unfortunately for Charlie who is a very naive young man. But Charlie sees it as a chance to fulfill his destiny of bringing the Irish home.

In London, Charlie meets a lot of interesting characters and touches all their lives. Charlie has a connection with nature and animals seem to be drawn to him - birds land on his shoulders and sing. Some of the lives he touches includes; a humped-back Irish woman who tells people's fortunes, a scientist who is searching for life's secrets who wants to study Charlie, three little boys who search the mud flats of the Thames for things to sell.

I thought this story was wonderful! Full of magic like Charlie Bryne who also, according to the story actually existed. The story is both historical but includes touches of the magical - Charlie's animal cohorts, his healing power, his magic touch in people's lives. I definitely recommend. ( )
  slimy07 | Aug 2, 2012 |
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The Irish Giant – that's what Londoners called Charlie Bryne, an enormous country lad standing 8 feet tall in his bare feet. He made his fortune by exhibiting himself, but Bryne was far more than a human oddity. He had the magical power of healing, a deep connection to the natural magic of the earth, and the blood of Irish kings in his veins. In 1782, he came to London with a single goal — to bring the Irish home to the island they had left.John Hunter was a man of science and insatiable curiosity — a surgeon, a natural philosopher, and a tireless collector of natural oddities. With analysis and dissection, Hunter strove to understand the natural world — and he wanted to add the bones of a giant to his collection.This novella, winner of the 1990 World Fantasy Award, examines what happens when the quest for scientific knowledge meets ancient natural magic.… (more)

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