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The Boy at the Gate

A Memoir

LIST PRICE $18.99
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Danny Ellis is a survivor, strong and resilient. An acclaimed singer/songwriter, he is proud of the way  he handled his difficult past: poverty in the 1950s Dublin slums and the brutality of the Artane Industrial School. He felt as though he had safely disposed of it all, until one night, while writing the powerful song that would launch his highly-praised album, 800 Voices ("A searing testament." —Irish Times), Danny's past crept back to haunt him. Confronted by forgotten memories of betrayal and abandonment, he was stunned to discover that his eight-year-old self was still trapped in a world he thought he had left behind.

Although unnerved by his experience, Danny begins an arduous journey that leads him back to the streets of Dublin, the tenement slums, and, ultimately, the malice and mischief of the Artane playground. What he discovers with each twist and turn of his odyssey will forever change his life. Elegantly written, this is a brutally honest, often harrowing, depiction of a young boy's struggle to survive orphanage life, and stands as an inspiring testament to the healing power of music and love.

“This is an incredibly brave book: shocking, and sometimes, despite everything, shockingly hilarious.” —Sara Gruen, bestselling author of Water for Elephants

“Like a true song, this story is finely crafted workmanship, unashamedly human with its pain and perplexity, yet unabashedly divine with grace and light and love woven into the tapestry beneath the tweed. . . . It is a treasure!” —William Paul Young, author of The Shack

“[Danny Ellis] moves fluidly between present and past, exploring a hard early life and its aftereffects with a mischievous tone.”
—Shelf Awareness

"A gifted writer, Ellis is effective at presenting abuse and neglect from the young boy’s perspective, without the elaboration of hindsight, the pathos of the memories only unraveling fully later. . . . Ellis is at his most poetic when writing about the power of music to protect and motivate him. . . . Filled with both winks and tears, this book proves that goodness can shine even in the ugliest places." —Booklist

“This is an incredibly brave book: shocking, and sometimes, despite everything, shockingly hilarious.” —Sara Gruen, bestselling author of Water for Elephants

“Like a true song, this story is finely crafted workmanship, unashamedly human with its pain and perplexity, yet unabashedly divine with grace and light and love woven into the tapestry beneath the tweed. . . . It is a treasure!” —William Paul Young, author of The Shack

“[Danny Ellis] moves fluidly between present and past, exploring a hard early life and its aftereffects with a mischievous tone.”
—Shelf Awareness

"A gifted writer, Ellis is effective at presenting abuse and neglect from the young boy’s perspective, without the elaboration of hindsight, the pathos of the memories only unraveling fully later. . . . Ellis is at his most poetic when writing about the power of music to protect and motivate him. . . . Filled with both winks and tears, this book proves that goodness can shine even in the ugliest places." —Booklist