The North Water
By Ian McGuire
Propelled by a vision that is savage, brutal and relentless, McGuire relates the tale of an opium-addicted 19th-century Irish surgeon who encounters a vicious psychopath on board an Arctic-bound whaling ship.
With grim, jagged lyricism, McGuire describes violence with unsparing color and even relish while suggesting a path forward for historical fiction.
Picture a meeting between Joseph Conrad and Cormac McCarthy in some run-down port as they offer each other a long, sour nod of recognition.