The sad, tender, and extremely funny memoir of a boyhood few thought he would survive, including the unforgettable mother and hilarious grandmother who raised him
A book to be relished by lovers of such works as The Glass Castle, Don't Let's Go to the Dogs Tonight, and Angela's Ashes
Everything readers love about consummate storyteller and beloved bestselling novelist Wayne Johnston's work is on full display in Jennie’s Boy: incredible characters, brilliant language, and a deep sense of place.
Wayne Johnston’s family — his mother, father, and three brothers — were always on the move. The year he turned eight, the most memorable year of an unusual childhood, they found themselves occupying a wreck of a house in the community his mother Jennie was from: Goulds, Newfoundland was not so much a place as a scattering of homes along an unpaved road.
Everyone knew him as “Jennie’s boy,” and his tiny, ferocious mother felt judged for Wayne’s sickly, skinny condition — he had to spend much of his time in a bed on wheels that was moved from room to room. While his brothers went off to school, Wayne passed his days with his witty, eccentric maternal grandmother, Lucy, whose son Leonard had died at the age of seven and whose photo stood alongside a statue of the Blessed Virgin.
Jennie's Boy recalls a boyhood full of pain, laughter, tenderness, and the kind of wit for which Newfoundlanders are known. By that wit, and by their love for each other — so often expressed in the most unloving ways — he, and they, survived.