Image from Amazon
Sorry about the delay in this post. I intended to finish it last night but came home with a stinking cold which made me want to do nothing more energetic than sitting on the sofa staring blindly at the TV.
Synopsis (from Amazon)
One of the most vivid and realised characters of recent fiction, Willie Dunne is the innocent hero of Sebastian Barry’s highly acclaimed novel. Leaving Dublin to fight for the Allied cause as a member of the Royal Dublin Fusiliers, he finds himself caught between the war playing out on foreign fields and that festering at home, waiting to erupt with the Easter Rising. Profoundly moving, intimate and epic, A Long Long Way charts and evokes a terrible coming of age, one too often written out of history.
Note: I finished this book the day before I went on holiday, and have read 4 other books since so this review may be a little sketchy.
As far as first world war stories go this one was fairly typical. Guy goes to war, people die, you know the drift. There was the added element of the hero coming from Ireland, but to be honest that element wasn’t very well explored. Willie was rather politically unaware which meant he had little to debate when it came to joining up, or being in the army in general. There were a couple of points where he seemed to have some sort of moral dilemma but they weren’t very well explored and given little page time.
As far as a war story you could do worse, but there are also plenty you should read first. As far as Sebastian Barry goes he has written better (my favourite of what I have read being The Secret Scripture
). If you want a war novel with an Irish outlook however I imagine there could well be a better one out there.