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The Winner of Sorrow Paperback – February 1, 2009
Intrusion: A Novel
A loving couple, grieving the loss of their son, finds their marriage in free fall when a beautiful, long-lost acquaintance inserts herself into their lives. Learn More
From Publishers Weekly
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"If you want the low-down and high-down on the delicate, brutal reality of a poet's life, you must read The Winner of Sorrow." --Paul Durcan
"An exceptional Irish writer." --Thomas Kilroy, Irish Independent
Top Customer Reviews
I wish this book had received more attention, though I can understand why not. A fictional retelling of the life and times of 18th century English poet William Cowper. Zzzzzzz. What would one say to excite the market? That Cowper's work was highly popular in its day? That he was a precursor of Wordsworth, Shelley & Co? That some of his phrases, namely "God works in mysterious ways," remain commonplace? That a few of the weighty anthologies of English poems contain one or two of his works? That he was a pal and sometimes collaborator on hymns with the priest who wrote "Amazing Grace?"
The blurbs on this site tell the story; no need for me to go into it, except for this observation: Lynch has created a memorable character. His Cowper has a personality that is often found in life, but rarely as the title character of a novel. He stands for all brilliant but ineffectual, self-centered, seemingly humble men whose inaction and indifference poison the lives of those around them, mostly the women who are infatuated with him. He is a taker. And though he is also insane, he is not insane enough to escape regret.
Lynch turns Cowper's life into a magical conveyance to another time. His insights and brilliant prose style create vivid mental images. He performs the service that serious readers ask of novelists: fool me with your art into discovering the truth about the Big stuff: god, love, death and life with its poles of torment and ecstasy.
This was Lynch's first novel. He said in an interview posted online that he had long admired Cowper's work and spent five years researching and writing the book.Read more ›