Book Review – This is Happiness by Niall Williams

This is Happiness begins with the sky clearing and the rain stopping just after 3 o’clock on the Wednesday afternoon of Holy Week in 1958 while the people of Faha in county Clare are at Church. This is a rare occurrence in Faha as rain 'was a condition of living'. Seventeen-year-old Noel Crowe, known as … Continue reading Book Review – This is Happiness by Niall Williams

My Reading – August 2020

The Heretic Wind: The Life of Mary Tudor, Queen of England by Judith Arnopp I hate Autumn; I always have. Moominsummer Madness by Tove Jansson Moominmamma was sitting on the front steps in the sun, rigging a model bark schooner. This Is Happiness by Neill Williams Nobody in Faha could remember when it started.

In my beginning is my end? – Opening and closing lines

A little while ago I saw a quote from the American novelist Gloria Naylor - 'One should be able to return to the first sentence of a novel and find the resonances of the entire work.' Other than in consciously literary works, I wondered how often this happened so I took a few favourite books … Continue reading In my beginning is my end? – Opening and closing lines

My Reading – March 2020

The Good Turn by Dervla McTiernanThe waiting room was ugly and neglected. A Slanting of the Sun by Donal RyanShe cries sometimes, without noise. Ten Doors Down: the story of an extraordinary adoption reunion by Robert TicknerI have a date with destiny this Sydney summer day in late January 1993. The Black Ascot by Charles … Continue reading My Reading – March 2020

Book Review – A Slanting of the Sun by Donal Ryan

A Slanting of the Sun is Donal Ryan's first collection of short stories. It is written in the same beautifully crafted poetic and uniquely Irish prose as his novels. All but one of the twenty stories are told in the first person, each with a distinctive voice. The characters cover a range of ages, sex … Continue reading Book Review – A Slanting of the Sun by Donal Ryan