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Big Girl, Small Town

By Michelle Gallen

“Darkly hilarious . . . Wildly entertaining.” —The Guardian

Meet Majella O’Neill, a heroine like no other, in this captivating Irish debut that has been called Milkman meets Derry Girls

Majella is happiest out of the spotlight, away from her neighbors’ stares and the gossips of the small town in Northern Ireland where she grew up during the Troubles. She lives a quiet life caring for her alcoholic mother, working in the local chip shop, watching the regular customers come and go. She wears the same clothes each day (overalls, too small), has the same dinner each night (fish and chips, microwaved at home after her shift ends), and binge-watches old videotapes of the same show (Dallas, best show on TV) from the comfort of her bed. 

But underneath Majella’s seemingly ordinary life are the facts that she doesn’t know where her father is and that every person in her town has been changed by the lingering divide between Protestants and Catholics. When Majella’s predictable existence is upended by the death of her granny, she comes to realize there may be more to life than the gossips of Aghybogey, the pub, and the chip shop. In fact, there just may be a whole big world outside her small town. 

Told in a highly original voice, with a captivating heroine readers will love and root for, Big Girl, Small Town will appeal to fans of Sally Rooney, Ottessa Moshfegh, and accessible literary fiction with an edge.

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Michelle Gallen

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Review quotes
“A darkly hilarious novel about small-town life . . . Wildly entertaining.” —The Guardian

“Sinead Moriarty's endorsement 'Milkman meets Derry Girls' is as accurate as you'll get. But Big Girl, Small Town is even funnier than Derry Girls, while being just as fraught as Anna Burns's Booker Prize winner.” —The Irish Independent

“Engaging and satisfying.” —The Daily Mail
 
“A confident debut with a very memorable protagonist.” —The Irish Times
 
“Engrossing.” —Image magazine (One of 8 “Must Reads” of 2020)
 
“Bawdy yet beautiful . . . I grew extraordinarily attached to Majella.” —Sara Baume, author of A Line Made by Walking
Product Details
Categories
Number of pages
320
Publication date
December 01, 2020
ISBN
9781643750897
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