“Burke shows again that he’s not just a comic genius, but also a fine dramatic writer and storyteller.” – Booklist. “Prose both scabrous and poetic.” – Publishers Weekly. “Proust meets Chandler over a pint of Guinness.” – Spectator. “Among the most memorable books of the year, of any genre.” – Sunday Times. “A hardboiled delight.” – Guardian. “Imagine Donald Westlake and Richard Stark collaborating on a screwball noir.” – Kirkus Reviews. “A cross between Raymond Chandler and Flann O’Brien.” – John Banville.

Saturday, March 22, 2008

On Celtic Tigers And Wingéd Elephants

It was bad enough seeing all those pink elephants on Paddy’s Day, but then we started seeing Wingéd Elephants – or one, at least, bearing the welcome news that Gerard Donovan has been beavering away over a hot stove-shaped sheet of paper. Quoth the Wingéd one’s blurb elves:
Gerard Donovan, author of JULIUS WINSOME and SUNLESS, examines the changing face of Ireland in YOUNG IRELANDERS, a stunning and elegiac collection of interrelated stories. In this marvellous volume coming in July 2008, Donovan returns to his home country of Ireland with a passion. The stories in YOUNG IRELANDERS shine a fresh light on the New Ireland and how the Irish are coping with its rewards and pressures: immigration, mid-life crisis, adultery and divorce, a lost sense of place and history, and of course, what to do with all that prosperity.
Erm, not at all well, as it happens, and it’ll be interesting to see how many of Donovan’s stories deal with the explosion in crime that has accompanied the Celtic Tiger. Given that the original Young Irelanders were prone to kicking out the jams once in a while, there’s a strong possibility that Donovan will be preaching some kind of radical social consciousness revolution. There’s also a strong possibility that he won’t. Only time, that notoriously prevaricating doity rat, will tell …

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