A Novel

Book - 2017
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When Oliver Bonds, a revered religious studies professor at the University of Texas, loses his toddler son and undergoes intense legal scrutiny over his involvement, grief engulfs him completely. His life is upended; Oliver loses his wife, home, and faith. Three years after his son's death, Oliver lives in a shack without electricity and frequents the soup kitchen where he used to volunteer. It's only when befriended by Lyle, a con artist with a passion for theories of Hollow Earth, that Oliver begins to reengage with the world. Oliver too becomes convinced that the inside of the planet might contain a different realm. Desperate to find a place where he can escape his past, Oliver chases after the most unlikely of miracles.

With unforgettable characters, wild imagery, and dark humor, Hollow explores the depths of doubt and hope, stretching past grief and into the space where we truly begin to heal.
Publisher: New York : Soft Skull Press, [2017]
ISBN: 9781619029408
Branch Call Number: EGERTON
Characteristics: 240 pages ; 22 cm


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Aug 02, 2017

Hollow is a haunting, hypnotic meditation on the struggle to recover from staggering loss. Author Owen Egerton drew me in to his story and kept me entranced the whole way through. When a toddler suddenly dies, it tears a family apart, and leaves husband Oliver adrift in his mourning. We find Oliver, a former college professor, living alone in a shed. When his pathological liar friend Lyle convinces him that the world is hollow and another civilization lives within, their desire to see this other world creates the only hope within Oliver's life. While the plot is interesting and perhaps seemingly preposterous, what I love most about this book is following Oliver through the novel as he goes deeper and deeper into his hopelessness. Ultimately, we see perhaps a small glimmer of hope for Oliver at the book's rollercoaster ride conclusion. Don't be put off by the bleakness of this book. It's a brilliant examination of struggling to find some way out of the darkness and back into the light. Highly recommended!


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