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SHORTLISTED FOR THE DESMOND ELLIOT PRIZE 2022
‘The energy, the voice, the language, the characters, all real, raw and utterly convincing’ Fiona Scarlett, author of Boys Don’t Cry
‘Wonderful, imaginative, highly original emotional rollercoaster of a story’ Peter James
I still think’a her every day, several times a day.
Aoife knows everyone in Dundalk’s underworld. Too well, in some cases. But when she meets Annie, a beautiful whirlwind of a woman, and brings her to the Town, she finds that she doesn’t know nearly enough about her. Annie is magnetic and wild and Aoife’s desire to learn more quickly becomes a need, and then an obsession – to know this dangerous woman, to love her, to keep her.
So when Aoife’s friend and collaborator the Rat King asks her to help him dispose of ten kilos of cocaine, swiped from a rival, she brings Annie along for a road trip through a Britain that she only knows as a place to be suspicious of. So when Annie decides she doesn’t want to return to Ireland, Aoife makes a decision that changes everything.
Gritty and yet tender, tragic and yet hopeful, Iron Annie is a breakneck journey that crackles with energy, warmth and heart, and marks the arrival of a fresh and vibrant new voice in literary fiction.
‘Full of wonder, grit, insight, sadness and joy’ Donal Ryan, author of The Spinning Heart
What an exquisite novel Iron Annie is. The narrative voice fair crackles: it's full of wonder, grit, insight, sadness and joy, and is quite beautiful. And Aoife is one of those fictional characters that arrives only once or twice in an age, sublimely rendered and completely unforgettable. -- Donal Ryan, author of The Spinning Heart and From a Low and Quiet Sea Iron Annie is absolutely everything I love in a book. The energy, the voice, the language, the characters, all real, raw and utterly convincing. Luke Cassidy is an incredible talent, with an ear for language to rival that of Kevin Barry, I could hear every single word. * Fiona Scarlett, author of Boys Don't Cry * Wonderful, imaginative, highly original emotional rollercoaster of a story -- Peter James Iron Annie is a novel full of grit and pearls - its language crackles with life. Luke Cassidy is a writer with a keen eye and a finely-tuned ear -- Ronan Hession, author of Leonard and Hungry Paul Utterly original ... I think this book is like a bolt from the blue for Irish writing -- Niamh Campbell, author of This Happy. It's apparent from the opening lines of Iron Annie that Luke Cassidy can write. His prose fizzes with energy and music, and the reader is immediately plunged into the anarchic underbelly of Ireland and the lives of Cassidy's vivid characters. -- Graeme Macrae Burnet, author of His Bloody Project It's wild and fierce and full of awful life. Also dead funny . . . This needs to be slapped on the arse and let out snorting into the world like a mustang horse -- Niall Griffiths, author of Grits, Sheepshagger and Stump Iron Annie marks the arrival of a fresh and compelling young voice in literary fiction . . . These complex, funny, tender, lewd and lovely characters will grab you by the throat from the first line and dare you to stop reading -- Emily Rapp Black, author of Poster Child, The Still Point of the Turning World, Cartography for Cripples and Sanctuary Iron Annie is a staggering debut novel. And what makes it so stylish and ferocious isn't the drugs, the brutal violence, or even the wild love and sex - it's the language. I've never read anything like the sentences in here. -- Rachel DeWoskin, author of Banshee, Big Girl Small, and Foreign Babes in Beijing
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