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By the end of their idyll, Billy and Eva were engaged, though she was set to return to County Wicklow. Determined to earn enough money to bring her, her family, and if necessary her entire village back to the U.S., Billy took two jobs, one of which would indenture him for years. But despite the money he sent, Eva never returned, and then was suddenly dead of pneumonia. The true tragedy is that she had simply kept her fare and married someone else--a secret Dennis keeps for the next 30 years as he watches Billy fall into a loveless marriage and the self-administered anesthesia of alcohol.
Alice McDermott's quiet, striking novel is a study of the lies that bind and the weight of familial wishes. She seems far less interested in the shock of revelation than in her characters' power to live through personal disaster. As Dennis's daughter pieces together Billy's real history, she also learns of the accommodations her own family had long made--and discovers that good intentions can be as destructive as the truth they mean to hide. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Well written, but the narrative tends toward repetitive. I found it pretty bleak reading.Published 15 days ago by firstname.lastname@example.org
wonderful story of the Irish in America with all their foibles and how a flawed person can still be loved so much.Published 18 days ago by Ann
This is the first book I've read by Alice McDermott and definitely won't be the last. A writer's writer for sure. Read morePublished 2 months ago by Painted Eye
Awkward, turgid writing. A failed attempt to imitate Anne Tyler. The story is pretty lame in the first place; so you feel all along that your struggle to keep the swirl of... Read morePublished 4 months ago by Cory Cipriani
Alice McDermott keeps you enchanted with her pictorial tales of interesting characters you wished you knew. KayPublished 5 months ago by Kay Murdy
Well written, but I hated the book. It was extremely depressing.Published 6 months ago by Sandra J. Mercer
The ability to believe, and the ability to be deceived?
All fatalism, no joy.
If the author had chosen to offer an uplifting story, I believe she could have... Read more
Wow. This is as good a book as I've read in a long time. Fabulous. This book evokes both a life and an entire community and an entire era, all in a concise package. Read morePublished 7 months ago by Avid Reader