Fiction love object omnivore review

Published on October 21st, 2013


The Love Object by Edna O’Brien

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Blurb: Collected here together for the first time in one beautiful volume are the stories of an expert practitioner of the shorter form. Spanning five decades of writing, The Love Object takes the most memorable and successful stories from collections like A Scandalous Woman and Saints and Sinners; stories such as ‘Shovel Kings’, ‘Irish Revel’, ‘Lantern Slides’ and ‘Paradise’ that have bewitched generation after generation. (Faber & Faber, 2013)

Matthew Dennison, The Sunday Times

The stories assembled here are culled from six collections of O’Brien’s short stories published between 1968 and 2011. Their consistency is not least among their remarkable qualities … Her own writing similarly evokes truths about her version of Ireland. Simultaneously it celebrates the country’s watery natural beauties and exposes the harshness of a climate shaped by the unyielding strictures of the Catholic Church and a pervasive inherited fear of poverty. Against this backdrop, O’Brien anatomises with a forensic eye the yearning for love.

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Lucy Scholes, The Guardian

“In most short story collections there are one or two gems that stand out; in this new edition of Edna O’Brien’s selected works, however, every one of the stories included is a shining example of a master at work.”

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The Independent on Sunday

“A collection of Edna O’Brien’s short stories from across five decades of writing is a treat indeed. O’Brien has an ability to conjure up a whole way of life within a few pages. Her stories are tinged with longing, desire and other complex emotions. The experience of reading this volume after her feted autobiography also means that many details taken from her own life, from excision of abcess to relationship with mother, are easily recognisable.”

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