The Use of Reason
In June, 2006, Picador launch Picador Shots, a new series of pocket-sized books priced at £1. The Shots aim to promote the short story as well as the work of some Picador's greatest authors. They will be contemporarily packaged but ultimately desposable books that are the ideal literary alternative to a magazine.
Colm Toibin's 'The Use of Reason' is one of the short stories that will published in his new collection, Mothers and Sons, this autumn. The Irish connection is the story of a small time criminal who finds himself in too deep by stealing not just cash or jewellery - easy to take, easy to get rid of quickly - but four extremely valuable paintings. How do you quickly get rid of a Rembrandt, Gainborough and two Guardis without getting caught, particularly in the climate of 1980's Dublin where you are being watched at all times. Can he trust the two clean-cut dutchmen who have come to do a deal? Can he trust his friends, his partners in crime, indeed his mother...?