Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Heard about a Book

I have read high praise for Amongst Women by John McGahern (NPR and The New York Review of Books)—"Amongst that rarest of things in contemporary fiction in English, an achieved and almost perfect work."

Amongst Women:

Desperate to pull their dying father back from the brink, the Moran sisters decide to recreate Monaghan day, the day of his annual reunion with his old colleague McQuaid, the day when he always seemed at his best. An IRA veteran, so disenchanted that he now welcomes his Protestant neighbours, Moran has long exerted a powerful influence over his daughters, continually drawing them back to the family home despite their departures to Dublin and London and the beginnings of their own families. Not so their elder brother Luke who remains resolutely outside the family circle while their younger brother Michael struggles to free himself. This turbulent family is gently restrained by the presence of Rose, Moran’s second wife whose quiet forbearance has become a mainstay of the sisters’ lives. Written in spare, unadorned yet sometimes lyrical prose, John McGahern’s novel depicts a family bound tightly and painfully to a tyrannical patriarch.