One day, years after he's moved away from his childhood home in rural Ireland, Dermot Healy returns to care for his ailing mother. Out of the blue she hands him the forgotten diary he had kept as a fifteen-year-old. He is amazed to find the makings of the writer he has become, as well as taken aback at the changes his memory has wrought upon the events of the past. Here is the seed of his story-the vision of the boy meets the memory of the man-which creates a stunning, illusory effect. The strange silhouettes who have haunted his past come back to inhabit these pages: his father, a kind policeman who guides him back to bed when he stumbles down the stairs sleepwalking; his mother, whose stories young Dermot has heard so often that he believes they are his own; or Aunt Masie, whose early disappointment in love has left her both dreamy and cynical. In this billowing and expansive series of recollections, Healy has traced the very shape of human memory.
"synopsis" may belong to another edition of this title.
Dermot Healy is a poet, a playwright, and a novelist. His short-story collection Banished Misfortune won two Hennessy Awards and the Tom Gallon Award. His novels include Fighting with Shadows and A Goat's Song. He is a member of Asodana, the academy of distinguished Irish writers. He lives in Sligo, Ireland.From Kirkus Reviews:
Eschewing straightforward chronicle, Irish poet and novelist Healy (A Goat's Song, 1995), born in 1947, re-creates his upbringing through a series of impressionistic word-pictures and characterizationsmost poignantly of his father, a policeman who retired early due to ill health. Writes Healy, taking his bearings here, ``What happened is a wonder, though memory is always incomplete, like a map with places missing.'' The young boy felt trapped with his family's move from the small village of Finea to the town of Cavan, where they lived above the busy bakery-tearoom operated by his aunt Maisie and his mother, Winnie. He and his father were both sleepwalkers, seeking escape in night dreams (``most nights we set off for Finea''). Healy gives little description of how he grew to be a man in London, though he does allow a self-deprecating glimpse ahead to the writer who returns home to find himself fabricating, to the editor of the local paper, a literary success he's not yet achieved. Thematically and stylistically, Healy's talents are ever on display here; the occasional sustained heroic catalogue of Cavan, for examplethe author piling clause upon vivid clause, like so many layers of frostingproviding technical tours-de-force; though his later experience at Saint Patrick's Secondary College, rendered primarily through re-created diary entries, is far less memorable. In closing as he flash-forwards to the 1990s and his return to Cavan to care for his aged mother, infirm and losing her faculties, Healy evokes the surprising bawdiness of the old woman's humor and ruminates on an imaginary place, Hy Brazil, like another Atlantis rising out of the sea, out beyond where the author lives, in North Sligo. The island, he concludes, is, like life, ``peopled with uncertainties.'' With his descriptive talent and his knack for making comedy out of tragedy, Healy has written a beautiful, imaginative, full- blooded memoir. -- Copyright ©1998, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.
"About this title" may belong to another edition of this title.
Book Description Mariner Books, 2000. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Bookseller Inventory # DADAX0156011646
Book Description Harvest Books, 2000. Paperback. Book Condition: New. book. Bookseller Inventory # M0156011646
Book Description Harvest Books, 2000. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Never used!. Bookseller Inventory # P110156011646
Book Description Harvest Books. PAPERBACK. Book Condition: New. 0156011646 New Condition. Bookseller Inventory # NEW7.0034796