I loved it. It's an incredibly evocative, enjoyable read...I didn't want it to stop. I wanted to stay in the world and carry on.
A lovely, generous, absorbing novel. Charles is made both 'of' and belonging to his place and world, while also not fitting into it. The war sections are so very good, so terrible and ugly and gritty. I absolutely believed all of it
You know sometimes, from the very first page of a book, you feel so at home and so involved with the story, it's as if you've walked alongside the characters all your life? Mother's Boy is one of those books. A sign of an incredible storyteller
Patrick Gale's MOTHER'S BOY is a tour-de-force; a meticulously researched re-imagining of the early life of a man who you may never have heard of, but who for many years was the voice of Radio Four's Poetry Please; the Cornish poet Charles Causley. It takes us from kitchens to battleships, and through two world wars. But more than than just an evocation of history - much more - the book is really a love-letter, to motherhood, and to the landscapes and townscapes of Gale's adopted home county of Cornwall. Most of all, it is a heartfelt tribute from one fine writer to another; a patient and subtle reflection on the tricky art of noticing - and enduring - what really matters in life
Gale has a rare talent for evoking human relationships. Here he exploits his skill fully, richly examining the dynamics between mother and son, and between men and men allowed in extraordinary times to explore what they really mean to one and other
I think Charles Causley would be incredibly happy - and stunned - if he were able to read your book. What you've done is extraordinary; you've somehow created a world that only Causley could have been born into and grown up in. His poetry calls up emotion; there's always much more than at first appears - and your story suggests, in the most sensitive and subtle way, the possible events that these echoes, memories and shadows might have come from. It's brilliant