On Canaan's Side: A Novel

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Penguin, Sep 8, 2011 - Fiction - 272 pages
23 Reviews
Longlisted for the Man Booker Prize, a mesmerizing new novel from the award-winning author of The Secret Scripture. Sebastian Barry's latest novel, Days Without End, is now available. 

A first-person narrative of Lilly Bere’s life, On Canaan’s Side opens as the eighty-five-year-old Irish émigré mourns the loss of her grandson, Bill. Lilly, the daughter of a Dublin policeman, revisits her eventful past, going back to the moment she was forced to flee Ireland at the end of the First World War. She continues her tale in America, where—far from her family—she first tastes the sweetness of love and the bitterness of betrayal.

Spanning nearly seven decades, Sebastian Barry’s extraordinary fifth novel explores memory, war, family ties, love, and loss, distilling the complexity and beauty of life into his haunting prose.

 

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - petterw - LibraryThing

On Canaan´s Side is a story about the significance of a seemingly insignificant life, of selfless kindness and reckless selfishness, of how wars, any wars, wreck lives, both of people fighting and ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - vguy - LibraryThing

Brilliant and brilliantly read by Grania ?? Narrated by a simple warm-hearted woman who loses men to almost all the wars of the 20th century,from WW1 to Iraq including the Irish troubles on the way ... Read full review

Contents

First Day without Bill
Fourth Day without Bill
Seventh Day without Bill
Tenth Day without Bill
Thirteenth Day without Bill
Fifteenth Day without Bill
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About the author (2011)

Sebastian Barry was born in Dublin in 1955. His plays include Boss Grady's Boys (1988), The Steward of Christendom (1995), Our Lady of Sligo (1998), The Pride of Parnell Street (2007), and Dallas Sweetman (2008). Among his novels are The Whereabouts of Eneas McNulty (1998), Annie Dunne (2002) and A Long Long Way (2005), the latter shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize. His poetry includes The Water-Colourist (1982), Fanny Hawke Goes to the Mainland Forever (1989) and The Pinkening Boy (2005). His awards include the Irish-America Fund Literary Award, The Christopher Ewart-Biggs Prize, the London Critics Circle Award, The Kerry Group Irish Fiction Prize, and Costa Awards for Best Novel and Book of the Year. He lives in Wicklow with his wife Ali, and three children, Merlin, Coral, and Tobias.

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