Breakfast on Pluto

McCabe, Patrick. Breakfast on Pluto. New York: HarperFlamingo, 1998.

Reason read: October is the best time to visit Ireland and this time, I have it from a reliable source. According to a born and raised Dubliner, October is the best month and Breakfast on Pluto was written by an Irishman.

Confessional: I had to read the Prelude a second time to make sure I wasn’t confusing Patrick Braden with Patrick McCabe.

This story will unhinge you a little. Patrick Braden starts his life as a babe left on the doorsteps of a church where he is taken in by Father Bernard McIvor, who just so happens to be Patrick’s real father. Not knowing what else to do with the child, the pastor takes Patrick to an abusive and alcoholic foster home. It is around this time that Patrick decides he is a transvestite and starts calling himself “Pussy”. While Pussy shares his life story in lighthearted, sometimes amusing, sometimes matter of fact anecdotes, there is always a dark and violent undercurrent. That can’t be helped when the protagonist’s boyfriend is murdered, Pussy becomes a prostitute and gets involved in terrorism. Need I say more?

A cool thing about Breakfast on Pluto: it references a lot of music. It prompted me to take a journey to YouTube to look up the song “Breakfast on Pluto” by Don Partridge as well as the music of Vic Damone and the theme song to A Summer Place.

Author fact: McCabe has written thirteen books but I am only reading this one for the Challenge.

Book trivia: Breakfast on Pluto was made into a movie starring Cillian Murphy in 2005. Patrick McCabe was one of the writers on the project. I, of course, have not seen it.
Another piece of trivia: Breakfast on Pluto was short listed for the Booker Prize in 1998.

Nancy said: Breakfast on Pluto was a “good novel” set in Ireland.

BookLust Twist: from Book Lust in the chapter called “Irish Fiction” (p 126).



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