Reading in the Dark

Front Cover
Vintage International, 1998 - Fiction - 245 pages
9 Reviews
Seamus Deane's first novel is a mesmerizing story of childhood set against the violence of Northern Ireland in the 1940s and 1950s. The boy narrator grows up haunted by a truth he both wants and does not want to discover. The matter: a deadly betrayal, unspoken and unspeakable, born of political enmity. As the boy listens through the silence that surrounds him, the truth spreads like a stain until it engulfs him and his family. And as he listens, and watches, the world of legend - the stone fort of Grianan, home of the warrior Fianna; the Field of the Disappeared, over which no gulls fly - reveals its transfixing reality. Meanwhile the real world of adulthood unfolds its secrets like a collection of folktales: the dead sister walking again; the lost uncle, Eddie, present on every page; the family house "as cunning and articulate as a labyrinth, closely designed, with someone sobbing at the heart of it." Seamus Deane has created a luminous tale about how childhood fear turns into fantasy and fantasy turns into fact.

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - WorldInColour - LibraryThing

'Reading In The Dark' is a childhood story, and in many ways a coming-of-age story of an unnamed Irish boy. The main narrative features a family secret, of which everyone thinks they know the truth ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - PilgrimJess - LibraryThing

This book rather strikes me as a 'marmite' book, you will either love or hate it depending on your taste. However, it could also be desribed as an onion as it peels back differing layers revealing the ... Read full review

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About the author (1998)

Seamus Deane was born in Derry in 1940. He is the author of a number of books of criticism and poetry, as well as the general editor of The Field Day Anthology of Irish Writing. He currently teaches at the University of Notre Dame.

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