on 12 February 2012
This is an amazing book which is typical of Michael O'Brien. His Island of The World is one of the best books I have ever read, and The Fathers Tale is on a par with that. As usual for O'Brien there are religious themes threaded into the tale,but in the subtle way that leads you to ponder them in new ways.
on 18 January 2016
I have just finished this wonderful book! Like all O'Brien's novels, it builds up very slowly and then takes off - by the time I got to the last four or so chapters, it had me in tears - God is so good, in spite of all that the darkness keeps on throwing in. There is a compassion and an awareness of grace in this novel that cannot fail to change the reader - IF the reader is open to receive the blessing. BUT just like Irina in the story, one can remain closed no matter what kinds of beauty come knocking at one's door.
on 2 August 2013
I am only a few dozen pages into this book but I have found it difficult reading.
The writing is over the top, confusing at times with all the multi-syllabic terminology, wandering all over the place, often going off at a tangent from the main story to indulge in philosophical musings.
Using nick-names for adults (Toffee! Worm!) is embarrassing to read.
Though repeatedly reminding us that funds are short, our hero thinks little of hopping on a plane to take him half around the world, then wonders what he is going to do in Helsinki.
As a Catholic myself, I find his constant references to Catholic religious practices also embarrassing.
And quoting poetry to someone you hardly know, and in the middle of a dance, is just not believeable.
Shall I go on?
I'd be wanting my money back?