Irish Novel was a class that I feel I have truly benefited from. I've always been interested in Ireland (being an Irish-American) and it was great to learn about the culture through the novel. Now what was I expecting when I began the course? Faeries and potatoes. Yes, but what I got was much more. I learned about the history and culture of the Irish people. And I'd just like to share two books worth reading from the class.
Reading in the Dark by Seamus Deane
A young boy grows up in Derry, Northern Ireland, haunted by his family's history. By listening to the political, educational, and ghost stories around him he is able to piece together the family mystery and step into adulthood.
"A swift and masterful transformation of family griefs and political violence into something at once rhapsodic and heartbreaking. If Issac Babel had been born in Derry, he might have written this sudden, brilliant book."
The Woman Who Walked into Doors by Roddy Doyle
Another great book that I read was a much more modern book, The Woman Who Walked into Doors. Here, Paula Spencer is a working-class woman left powerless after the abuse of her husband and is left to find control through other aspects of her life. There's also a sequel, Paula Spencer, which takes place ten years later as she attempts to get her life back together again.