I picked up my current book because it is a collection of short stories. The review quote from The Times on the back cover alerts me to the fact that “Eddie Virago’s back. The hero of Joseph O ‘ Connor’s widely acclaimed novel Cowboys and Indians features in the first of thirteen stories that make up True Believers.
In some ways this collection takes me out of my comfort zone and also remains there. The stories deal with ordinary people and the everyday pain of ordinary life. Admittedly several are set in Northern Ireland and chronicle a way of life with which I am unfamiliar but underneath and within every story is a pervading sadness which is not far from all our lives. The stories deal with people leaving, being left or thinking of leaving. People looking back to where they came from and to where they are going and trying to make sense of it all.
True Believers was Joseph O’Connor’s second published work. I am tempted to look out for other writings by him, there are quite a few. Here is what I can choose from:
Cowboys and Indians. 1991
Finbar’s Hotel (serial novel, with others)1997
Red Roses and Petrol1995
The Weeping of Angels1997
Even the Olives Are Bleeding: The Life and Times of Charles Donnelly. 1992
The Secret World of the Irish Male (humorous essays)1994
Sweet Liberty: Travels in Irish America.1996
The Irish Male at Home and Abroad (humorous essays)1996
As a reward for reading through that list, I throw in a “did you know”.
Did you know one of his siblings is the musician Sinead O’Connor?