On Canaan's Side

On Canaan's Side
Sebastian Barry
Reviewed by Andy Murray
Faber
Thu, 04/08/2011
9780571226535
£16.99

Eighty-year-old Lilly Bere's epic story begins at the end, just as she is struggling to come to terms with the last great tragedy in her life: the suicide of her grandson. Shadows in the present and ghosts from the past weave threads of both sadness and strength through her tale, which spans eight decades, numerous wars and two continents. This deep, affecting novel can easily be read in one sitting, thanks to Sebastian Barry's seemingly effortless, flowing prose, and his creation of such layered and damaged characters.

A story that stays with you well after the final page, On Canaan's Side is an ethereal and evocative journey into a woman's losses, loves and surpassing endurance.

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