Barbara De Garcia


Connemara: Listening to the Wind – Tim Robinson

7 April 2021
Connemara: Listening to the Wind Book Cover Connemara: Listening to the Wind
Connemara Trilogy
Tim Robinson
Connemara (Ireland)

In 1999, Tim Robinson established himself as one of Irelandas most brilliant nonfiction writers with the two-volume "Stones of Aran," a tribute to the unspoiled wild of Irelandas Aran Islands. With "Connemara," he creates an indelible portrait of a small corner of the world. From the unmarked graves of unbaptized infants to the shimmering peaks of the Twelve Pins, Robinson brings his close attention and dazzling prose to describe the mountains, bogs, shorelines, and landscape of his home and, at the same time, make a great statement about the world at large.

Tim Robinson died in spring 2020. He and his wife had relocated from Connemara to London after Tim developed Parkinson’s Disease. He died of COVID, following the death of…

Contemporary Fiction Literary Fiction Womens Fiction

The Weight of Love – Hilary Fannin

3 July 2020
The Weight of Love Book Cover The Weight of Love
Hilary Fannin
Womens Fiction
Doubleday UK
5 March 2020

'Delicate, powerful, hypnotic.' DONAL RYAN 'An exquisitely written, deeply moving novel about the agonies of love, intimacy, and the harm we inflict upon one another in the name of romance.' LOUISE O'NEILL London, 1996. Robin and Ruth meet in the staff room of an East London school. Robin, desperate for a real connection, instantly falls in love. Ruth, recently bereaved and fragile, is tentative. When Robin introduces Ruth to his childhood friend, Joseph, a tortured and talented artist, their attraction is instant. Powerless, Robin watches on as the girl he loves and his best friend begin a passionate and turbulent affair. Dublin 2017. Robin and Ruth are married and have a son, Sid, who is about to emigrate to Berlin. Theirs is a marriage haunted by the ghost of Joseph and as the distance between them grows, Robin makes a choice that could have potentially devastating consequences. The Weight of Love is a beautiful exploration of how we manage life when the notes and beats of our existence, so carefully arranged, begin to slip off the stave. An intimate and moving account of the intricacies of marriage and the myriad ways in which we can love and be loved. 'An absorbing, cleverly structured, yet very human novel. It is hard to accept that it is Hilary Fannin's first' RODDY DOYLE

This is a first novel that doesn’t read like a first novel. The author is clearly an accomplished writer, a journalist and playwright in Ireland, and now a novelist….

Historical Fiction Literary Fiction

Hamnet – Maggie O’Farrell

23 May 2020
Hamnet Book Cover Hamnet
Maggie O'Farrell
Historical Fiction
Tinder Press
March 31, 2020

A stunning new departure for Maggie O'Farrell's fiction, HAMNET is the heart-stopping story behind Shakespeare's most famous play. On a summer's day in 1596, a young girl in Stratford-upon-Avon takes to her bed with a fever. Her twin brother, Hamnet, searches everywhere for help. Why is nobody at home? Their mother, Agnes, is over a mile away, in the garden where she grows medicinal herbs. Their father is working in London. Neither parent knows that one of the children will not survive the week. Hamnet is a novel inspired by the son of a famous playwright. It is a story of the bond between twins, and of a marriage pushed to the brink by grief. It is also the story of a kestrel and its mistress; flea that boards a ship in Alexandria; and a glovemaker's son who flouts convention in pursuit of the woman he loves. Above all, it is a tender and unforgettable reimagining of a boy whose life has been all but forgotten, but whose name was given to one of the most celebrated plays ever written.

I came to reading this book as someone who is not a Shakespeare aficionado. I have over the years seen various productions of Shakespeare plays, some wonderful, and some…

Contemporary Fiction

Nightingale Point – Luan Goldie

1 May 2020
Nightingale Point Book Cover Nightingale Point
Luan Goldie
Interpersonal relations
July 25, 2019

On an ordinary Saturday morning in 1996, the residents of Nightingale Point wake up to their normal lives and worries. Mary has a secret life that no one knows about, not even Malachi and Tristan, the brothers she vowed to look after. Malachi had to grow up too quickly. Between looking after Tristan and nursing a broken heart, he feels older than his twenty-one years. Tristan wishes Malachi would stop pining for Pamela. No wonder he's falling in with the wrong crowd, without Malachi to keep him straight. Elvis is trying hard to remember the instructions his care worker gave him, but sometimes he gets confused and forgets things. Pamela wants to run back to Malachi but her overprotective father has locked her in and there's no way out. It's a day like any other until something extraordinary happens. When the sun sets, Nightingale Point is irrevocably changed and somehow, through the darkness, the residents must find a way back to lightness, and back to each other. Readers love Nightingale Point: 'A beautiful and heartbreaking story about working-class people and their lives both before and after tragedy' 'I couldn't put it down...a beautiful story of staying strong when it matters most' 'A triumphant debut...This book pops, fizzes and sparkles to life' 'A must-read masterpiece'

This is Luan Goldie’s first novel. She is “an emerging young writer of color”, who is a primary school teacher in England, and her novel is on the 2020…

Historical Fiction Literary Fiction

Actress – Anne Enright

11 April 2020
Actress Book Cover Actress
Anne Enright
W. W. Norton
March 3, 2020

From the Man Booker Prize-winner, a brilliant and moving novel about celebrity, sexual power, and a daughter's search to understand her mother's hidden truths.

Among the images of my mother that exist online is a black-and-white photograph of me, watching her from the wings. I am four or five years of age, and…