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Killing of a Bank Manager, The Paperback – 17 Jan 2011
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It's a rare writer who can create an entire world in a single sentence. Rarer still is the writer who can combine these sentences to tell a compelling story. Paul Kavanagh has both skills in abundance. His work is beautiful, moving, funny, tragic, and achingly human. --Jeffrey Dinsmore, Awkward Press
You never see Kavanagh. All you see is ballsy demand after demand shoved with exquisite vocabulary and baldfaced syntax directly under your nose. From prologue to denouement, The Killing of a Bank Manager will keep you on the edge of your tongue. This is a how-to for those who aspire to murder those who steal. The book doesn't necessarily prove that two wrongs make a right, but rather that two wrongs can be infinitely more interesting. Put the money in the bag. Push the alarm, and you will die laughing. ----Willie Smith, Author of Nothing Doing
About the Author
Paul Kavanagh was born in England in 1971 and lives in Charlotte, N.C., USA. His writing credits include poetry and short stories in Sleeping Fish, Burnside Review, Fifth Wednesday Journal, Pen Pusher, Better Non Sequitur, Nano Fiction, Evergreen Review, Marginalia, Upstairs at Duroc, Mipoesias, Monkeybicycle, Milk Magazine, American Drivel Review, and Trnsfr.
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At its best, `The Killing of a Bank Manager' conveys the comic - near-farcical - intensity of human desire and the disturbing tenuousness of these emotions. However, it strays too often into repetitious use of stock words and images, and over elaborate lists of thesaurus-mined synonyms and approximations that do little save to distract. Where pith would suffice, Kavanagh - too often, it has to be said - opts for the loquacious garrulousness of the verbose tautologist. Nonetheless, a wonderfully refreshing alternative to the `play it safe', `no nonsense' banality of contemporary realism and bourgeois, character-obsessed `meat-and-two-veg' that usually gets served up.
The Killing of a Bank Manager brings together some rather abstract thoughts.. but still beautiful,pitiable,self indulgent,sickening yet desirable. Henry is a character whom we can all identify with on occasion.
Most helpful customer reviews on Amazon.com
I found that as I read The Killing of a Bank Manager that I was not aware of the words I was reading. I kept picturing in my mind's eye the exact places Kavanagh described. This was true on the very first few pages even, where usually a reader does not "get into the story of the book" until later. You will walk down the streets of Mexico with Henry and you will see what he sees, hear what he hears, and smell what he smells. It is like watching a movie only the movie comes from the words on the page. I know, I know, this sounds cliche but things become cliches for reasons and this writing is superb.
You will quickly find that the author uses a unique mechanism to move the story along, or rather, to change scenes and emotions when needed. Words in fancy script separate sections of paragraphs giving you a taste of what is coming up but never revealing exactly how it's going to happen. I rather like that because in our world of Internet/graphics-laden pages, these script-like references and breakpoints in the narrative helped to give a sense of movement, accomplishment as I read, and hints of what was to come. It's just another example of how well thought-out The Killing of a Bank Manager is.
This novel is one exceptional tale, boldly (and well-) written, superb.
He lives above a beauty parlor, where little beauty actually occurs. The only bright spot at the parlor is a woman named Laura, on whom Henry has had his eye. He also lives across the street from a bank. Every morning, he watches the female tellers arrive for work. He also watches the bank manager unlock the main doors each morning. Henry decides, one day, that the bank manager must die.
There is a lot of great writing in this book, but, overall, I'm not sure what to make of it. It tends to jump from one thing to another, kind of like James Joyce, or stream-of-consciousness writing. Those who like modern, edgy fiction that gets rid of the literary "rule book" will love this novel. On the other hand, for those who prefer more conventional plot, characters and storytelling, look elsewhere.