[b]1. Factual information: [/b]
a) Brian Moore
b) Lies of Silence, Ventage, 1999, 251 pp (thirst published by Bloomsbury Publishing Ltd 1990)
[b]2. First Reaction:[/b]
a) We were not allowed to choose a book, so there is no choice.
b) It’s an impressive story. It’s a subject with tension! But except for that it was not really a book of my interesting. Just to read for school and make a book report. Although there were lots of parts I liked.
[b]3. The search for the background information:[/b]
a) Summary: This book tells the story of a married middle-aged man, who’s called Michael Dillon. He lives with his wife in Belfast, Ireland. He’s an hotel manager in the hotel/restaurant: the Clarence. Everything seems normal, but Michael has got a lover too. She’s called Andrea. He’s confused, but decided to tell Moira, his wife, about Andrea. That night, when he wanted to tell her, there were strange things noises outside. Later on, there was broken in to their house. They were held hostage by Ira men. Not that they were very catholic, but they were raised that way.
Moira tried to escape through the toilet window, but was forced inside again. Then they still didn’t know why they were hostages. The next morning the IRA men came to them to get Michael and to explain only to him what they were up to and what Michael had to do. Michael had to park his car in the car-park of the Clarence, his own hotel. That’s all. After he would have done that he had to tell the doorman he needs to buy something at the other side of the road. When he had bought something he would be picked up by the IRA again. He would be followed by the IRA and checked if he didn’t phone the police. When he did, his wife would be executed. The two of them went into the bedroom because Michael had to dress. The IRA man showed his face accidentally. The man was looking in the mirror to scratch his face. When he saw that Michael was looking he said that Michael had never seen the face. Michael taught he would be doomed.
When he drove to his Hotel he thought of his past and of course about Moira and Andrea and what to do, because he still didn’t tell her. He drove his car into the car-park and wasn’t checked by the security gate, as usual. He saw Pottinger come in the hotel for a speech to his believers. Than he knew it wasn’t an other stupid bomb attack. When he came into the shop he didn’t listen to the IRA anymore and he phoned the police because he knew that they won’t call the hotel to clear it. After that the hotel was cleaned and the bomb went off after the police showed up. He drove to his home and saw Moira sitting with the police in the living room. Moira was deeply shocked when she found out what he had done. She went to her parents place. Moira thought the best thing to do was to tell the whole world what was happened, because then they would know how bad the IRA is. The police however wanted this story to be forgotten, because they might get hurt by the IRA seriously. After a while she found out about Andrea. Not because he had told her but because she saw them.
Moira had started a process against the IRA. Michael had been transformed to London because he did what the police said and because he wanted to get away from Belfast and all his memory’s. He wanted a new life with Andrea. After a day in London he was called by the police, They had found Kev. That was the boy Michael saw during the morning. They asked if he could identified. He said he would first discuss it with Moira. That afternoon he got a visit from en old school mate who was priest now. He asked if he would testify. He said yes because he became very angry. He discussed it with Moira and Andrea. He decided not to. The next morning he would call the police about what he had decided. The problem was that the police wasn’t there. The operator told him that they would be back this afternoon. Again the priest came and again he said he would testifiy. That afternoon he was trying to call the police again. When he went in to his flat he was pushing a little-red hared fellow, because the phone rang and it would probably be the police so he could say he wont testify. The same red-haired man came a minute later into his apartment. He told him he would check the meter. Then two other men came into his apartment and shoot him. This time without any witnesses.
b) Search for the technical story parts:
The story will be about a short week. It’s written in a chronological order.
The places where it takes place: Belfast (capital of Northern Ireland) where Michaels hotel Clearence is placed. Michaels home where he lives with Moira. Moira’s parents home.
Londen is the place Michael and Andrea would went for, this would also be a good shelter for Michael for not to be seen by the IRA. But the truth is different. It is last place he will ever see.
You experience the story by the view of Michael. You will be an onlooker of his thoughts, his moves and deeds.
You’ll meet the whole affaire from the beginning with the hostage, till the day he had to die.
c) Search for the theme:
-To experience the way to be involved without the strength to make it your way.
-The ‘die’-scene is of great importance for the theme. The scene of the hostage also.
-The book includes a ‘behind the lines scene’ with the title. The Lies of the unspoken words. There are several interpretations, but the main translation by me is:
The Lies of the Unspoken words; the lies are not just silenced… the lie is the forced to be silence. If you won’t be silenced by yourself, you will be silenced by another. Forced to lie about your experience.
d) Place in the history of the literature:
Moore, Brian, 1921–99, Canadian-American novelist, b. Belfast, Northern Ireland. He emigrated to Canada in 1948, where he was a reporter for the Montreal Gazette. He later moved to the United States and was a longtime resident of Malibu, Calif., although he maintained Canadian citizenship. While his novels are often concerned with people who are capable of hypocrisy and self-delusion, a comic vein runs through them. In clear, precise prose, Moore sets his beautifully drawn, isolated characters against a world marked by provincialism and religiosity. Moore’s fiction has never been enormously popular, but it is strongly admired by other writers and a devoted group of readers. His novels, each of which is strikingly different in plot, setting, and historical period, include The Lonely Passion of Judith Hearne (1956), The Luck of Ginger Coffey (1960), The Great Victorian Collection (1975), Black Robe (1985), Lies of Silence (1990), The Statement (1996), and The Magician’s Wife (1998). Several of his works were made into films. He also wrote under the name Michael Bryan.
1) The way the IRA cooperates is impressive. That’s also why I ‘like’ the ending; the main character who will be shut. It’s hard, but it’s necessary for a good story with an accent behind the lines.
2) The passage that he went home again to take his trunk and leave the place is a ‘nice’ passage. The tension for the vehicle –which he recognized- he saw at the street, passing his flat very slowly. He is overflowed with tension and his brains work at top-speed. He went out of his house passing the back garden and than consider the consequences that if they would be at the front of his house, they possibly would be at the back too. So takes the front door and jumps in his car and leaves in a hurry, and nothing happened.
3) My opinion is that if the principle character dies, it will be a good book (if the it fits in the story of course!). But on the other hand it’s not pleasant, certainly not if the principle character will be followed; and you know that he will be the target of a successfully operation.
4) I never read a book or saw a film which I can compare with this story.
5) The theme is not so far to be found, it happens in this awful (for the places where this does happen) world. So it can be seriously and I thought about already before (not precisely this way of course).
6) The language is not that complicated to read. Some times it’s hard of course, but it was not an obstacle for reading the book.
7) My final judgement is partly different from my thirst reaction.
The story includes more than only a little tension and some impressive moments. The story behind the story is what interests me really. And this story contains a story behind the story and I think I do like it. My final judgement is positive.
8) I won’t really recommend this book, but I also won’t dissuade it.