Synopses & Reviews
"One of the masters of the short story".--NEWSWEEK. "In almost all the stories in this excellently balanced collection O'Connor's people explode from the page. The nice are here and the nasty: the gentle, the generous, the mean, the absurd, those rich in dignity, those without a shred of it. . . . Without adornment, he simply tells the truth".--WASHINGTON POST BOOK WORLD.
"Frank O'Connor is a modern master of the short story whose new collection could not be more welcome, since these exuberant and consistently excellent stories spanning three decades come from books now out of print. Although O'Connor writes from his own perspective as an Irish Catholic, his humanity is broad enough that the world he re-creates becomes our world, even if we are neither Irish nor Catholic. Exploring almost the whole of Irish society during the early part of the century, O'Connor draws his priests, children, young men, and middle-aged women with equal deftness, humor, and compassion. His subjects range from small to large, from the domestic rivalry in the gem, 'My Oedipus Complex,' to the Anglo-Irish conflict in his best-known story, 'Guests of the Nation.' More often, O'Connor will intertwine these subjects, as in the bittersweet 'Uprooted.' O'Connor's language is unfailingly true to the wit and vitality, harshness and music of the Irish tongue. Even when reading these stories silently to ourselves, we cannot help but feel we are hearing them. In the end, the vision of Ireland they give to us is full and rich and unforgettable." Reviewed by Daniel Weiss, Virginia Quarterly Review (Copyright 2006 Virginia Quarterly Review)