Stories by Contemporary Irish Women

Daniel J. Casey, Editor, Linda M. Casey, Editor Syracuse University Press $16.95 (221p) ISBN 978-0-8156-0249-1
In a perceptive if often somber collection of 17 tales, featuring veterans and newcomers alike, Mary Beckett's ``Saints and Scholars'' takes the form of an angry dialogue between a wife and her mother-in-law--bitter, disappointed women mired in a destructive relationship with the man who binds them together. F. D. Sheridan's ``The Empty Ceiling'' conjures a woman deeply disturbed by the bombing death of a boy who retreats into an emotional cocoon. The narrator of Edna O'Brien's ``A Scandalous Woman'' recalls how a childhood friend, beautiful and lively, looked for romance but settled for being ``ruined'' by a bank clerk, eventually succumbing to madness. The speaker concludes that her country is ``a land of shame, a land of murder and a land of strange sacrificial women.'' Clare Boylan's ``Housekeeper's Cut'' strikes a lighter note, as a country wife and a London bachelor learn that in an illicit affair it's easier to love when the loved one is miles away. Daniel Casey co-edited Modern Irish-American Fiction: A Reader ; Linda Casey is a freelance anthologizer. (June)
Reviewed on: 06/05/1990
Release date: 06/01/1990
Genre: Fiction
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