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The Hostage
by Brendan Behan

Category: Fiction / Comedy
0 pages; ISBN: 0413311902

Rating: 8/10  (Ratings explained)
Reviewer: Nathan Sullivan


Strictly speaking this is actually a play, but it was so good I'm going to review it anyway!
The play is set in a Dublin brothel, with many mad inhabitants including Monsewer an IRA commander who is mad as a hatter, and Pat who seems to be the sanest person in the house. An IRA member has been captured by the British and is due to be hanged in the morning. The IRA kidnap a cockney soldier and threaten to do him in if the prisoner is not released. During his spell in the brothel many strangee things occur, for instance the cast occasionally burst into song for no apparent reason.
I think that this is a very amusing play, my favourite line would have to be when Meg tells Pat that he is a ponce, to which Pat replies, "I'm saving up to be a ponce".
Perhaps the most remarkable thing aout this play is the way that Behan ridicules the IRA as much as he does the Brits, this is particularly strange when you consider that Behan was in the IRA. On the whole this is a very well written and extremely funny play which is also relatively short and easy to read (with the exception of some of the Gaelic phrases).



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