Today it is my turn on the BlogTour for A Mind Polluted by Martin Geraghty. A disturbing tale of anger, revenge and emotional turmoil. As a reader you may ask yourself who the real culprit is, and who should be carrying the burden of blame. Read it and see what you think.
About the Author
Martin Geraghty is a forty-five-year-old from Glasgow. He is a self-employed Private Investigator who claims his profession is not remotely as interesting as it may seem. Human beings and how they react to the various curveballs that life throws at them is generally what inspires him to write. He has had work published in various litzines including Razur Cuts and Glove. When not writing or playing amateur detective, he can be found on a golf course or indulging in his chief passions, food, wine and music. A Mind Polluted is his debut novel.
About the book
His world falls apart…
Triggered by overhearing a confession from his mother’s lips when he was a young boy, Connor Boyd carries the burden of the secret through his life.
Is falling in love his saviour? Or will he embark on a journey down a self-destructive path which ultimately leads to his version of justice?
Will he concentrate on his future, or be consumed by his past?
I could talk about this book for pages. It is controversial in a sense that not everyone is going experience or evaluate the story of Connor the same way, and I don’t just mean the subjective reading experience each reader has. However first just let me say kudos to Geraghty for the ending. Talk about way out of left field, but in a way it creates an even bigger platform for discussion.
Imagine hearing something as a child that changes your entire outlook on life, your family and your attitude in general. The kind of comment that buries into your head like a parasite. A worm munching away at the stability of your temperament and personality, the stability of your relationships and inevitably changes your path in life.
Although the story gives you that initial perception I would also argue that Connor may have made the same choices irrespective of being privy to a comment made in anger or haste. The majority of kids and teens experience, see and hear things they aren’t supposed to, and yet it doesn’t automatically set them on a path of destruction.
The volatile aspect of his personality may have appeared eventually, and towards the end of the story someone does confront Connor with his constant need to blame others. He is always the victim and never the one at fault. No matter how controlling, how insulting or how abusive he is, he always blames the other person. In fact, a tree could fall on him from a great height in the middle of a desert and he would always blame his mother. The woman who has become his personal demon, the sat nav in his destructive life.
Someone give the child, the teen and the man a hefty slap, and tell him to take responsibility for his actions. His actions, his choices and ultimately his decisions. Although the story veers into the issue of mental health at one point, and he could certainly have done with a lot more support, especially as a child, I personally think the last pages speak to an altogether different evaluation.
The irony of A Mind Polluted is that at the end Connor and his mother probably have more in common than either of them are willing to acknowledge. The scales of nature vs nuture are weighing up equally by the end of this dark tale of anger and regret.
I have to hand it to Geraghty, you can read this and feel empathy or read it and feel the underlying current of aggression. It is a two-way path, a crossing, depending on your personal frame of reference. Is it a mind polluted by emotional turmoil or is the mind polluted from the get-go, a seed that grows when watered sufficiently with the right or wrong kind of nourishment?