107 of 109 people found the following review helpful
A superbly crafted novel,
This review is from: A Long Long Way (Paperback)
I'm not really one for war novels but was drawn to this because of its focus on Irish soldiers fighting in the Great War against the backdrop of the Easter Rising in their own country (I'm Irish myself) and because it was nominated for the Booker Prize. I whizzed through 'The Da Vinci Code' before this (well, I thought it was about time that I knew what people were going on about) and found it a blessed relief to savour the poetic prose of Sebastian Barry's novel after the dross of Dan Brown's. Barry describes interactions and interiority with poetic insight, so much so that I re-read many passages, just to taste properly all that they had to offer. However, some of his graphic descriptions of the field of battle are stomach-churning - and so they should be. In Willie Dunne, he creates a deeply empathic character whose growing sense of out-of-placeness and disillusionment with the discourses of war build incrementally across the novel. I found the end both shocking and deeply moving. This is a superbly crafted book that I would recommend unreservedly.