Dans les années 1850, chassé d'Irlande par la Grande Famine, le jeune Thomas McNulty vient tenter sa chance en Amérique. Il rencontre John Cole, qui devient l'ami et l'amour de sa vie. Tour à tour, Thomas et John vont combattre les Indiens des grandes plaines de l'Ouest, se travestir en femmes pour monter des spectacles, et s'engager du côté de l'Union dans la guerre de Sécession. Jusqu'à ce que la violence de la guerre les rattrape...
Sebastian Barry dessine le portrait d'une famille touchante et inhabituelle, composée de ce couple inséparable, de Winona, leur fille adoptive sioux, et du vieux poète noir McSweny, et pose un regard neuf sur une des périodes les plus brutales de l'histoire américaine.
Bien qu'il s'agisse d'une histoire à part entière, nous retrouvons Winona Cole, la jeune orpheline indienne lakota du roman Des jours sans fin, et sa vie dans la petite ville de Paris, Tennessee, quelques années après la guerre de Sécession.
Winona grandit au sein d'un foyer peu ordinaire, dans une ferme à l'ouest du Tennessee, élevée par John Cole, son père adoptif, et son compagnon d'armes, Thomas McNulty. Cette drôle de petite famille tente de joindre les deux bouts dans la ferme de Lige Magan avec l'aide de deux esclaves affranchis, Tennyson Bouguereau et sa soeur Rosalee. Ils s'efforcent de garder à distance la brutalité du monde et leurs souvenirs du passé. Mais l'État du Tennessee est toujours déchiré par le cruel héritage de la guerre civile, et quand Winona puis Tennyson sont violemment attaqués par des inconnus, le colonel Purton décide de rassembler la population pour les disperser.
Magnifiquement écrit, vibrant de l'esprit impérieux d'une jeune fille au seuil de l'âge adulte, Des milliers de lunes est un roman sur l'identité et la mémoire, une sublime histoire d'amour et de rédemption.
Obligée autrefois de fuir l'Irlande et les siens avec son fiancé pour de mystérieuses raisons, Lilly Bere, à quatre-vingt-neuf ans, revit le chemin parcouru depuis son arrivée dans le Nouveau Monde - le côté de Canaan - au rythme des hommes de sa vie. D'une traversée clandestine à leur installation précaire à Chicago, le jeune couple n'aspire qu'à une vie normale. Mais c'est sans compter avec la menace sourde qui pèse sur eux, et qui va pousser Lilly, désormais seule au monde, à s'enfuir à Cleveland. Devenue employée de maison grâce à son amie Cassie, elle y est témoin des injustices et du racisme de la société américaine. Quand elle rencontre le séduisant et énigmatique Joe, elle croit enfin toucher le bonheur du doigt - jusqu'à une explosion pendant laquelle Joe disparaît... Ce n'est là qu'un des nombreux mystères de la vie de Lilly, racontée comme un thriller, et imprégnée d'une infinie douceur.
L'Irlandais Jack McNulty est un 'homme provisoire', tout comme l'ont été ses missions avec l'armée britannique durant la Seconde Guerre mondiale. En 1957, installé à Accra, en proie à l'angoisse et au ressassement, il décide de rédiger l'histoire de sa vie.
Homme ordinaire, aussi héroïque qu'insignifiant, Jack a été le témoin de choses extraordinaires. Il a travaillé et erré à travers le monde, tour à tour soldat, ingénieur, observateur de l'ONU. Son mariage avec Mai, la plus jolie fille de Sligo, est à la fois étrange et tumultueux, mais comme tout le reste, il finira par lui glisser entre les doigts...
Here, now, listen, I'll tell you a tale . . .Daffodils are in bloom as dawn breaks over the foothills of Ballycumber, ushering in hope for a new day and stirring the ghosts of a past fraught with sorrow, anguish and emptiness.In search of advice, young Evans Stafford calls at the home of friend and strong-minded traditionalist, Nicholas Farquhar. The following day, as Farquhar learns the devastating consequences of this meeting, he discovers that his memories and words are governed by a buried history; a force far greater than himself.Sebastian Barry's Tales of Ballycumber premiered at the Abbey Theatre, Dublin, in September 2009.
Annie Dunne and her cousin Sarah live and work on a small farm in a remote and beautiful part of Wicklow in late 1950s Ireland. All about them the old green roads are being tarred, cars are being purchased, a way of life is about to disappear. Like two old rooks, they hold to their hill in Kelsha, cherishing everything. When Annie's nephew and his wife are set to go to London to find work, their two small children, a little boy and his older sister, are brought down to spend the summer with their great-aunt.It is a strange chance for happiness for Annie. But against that happiness moves the figure of Billy Kerr, with his ambiguous attentions to Sarah, threatening to drive Annie from her last niche of safety in the world. The world of childish innocence also proves darkened and puzzling to her, and she struggles to find clear ground, clear light - to preserve her sense of love and place against these subtle forces of disquiet.A summer of adventure, pain, delight and ultimately epiphany unfolds for both the children and their elderly caretakers in this poignant and exquisitely told story of innocence, loss and reconciliation.
COSTA NOVEL AWARD WINNER
“Startlingly beautiful…Breathtakingly exciting.” –The Guardian
From the two-time Man Booker Prize finalist Sebastian Barry, “a master storyteller” (Wall Street Journal), comes a powerful new novel of duty and family set against the American Indian and Civil Wars
Thomas McNulty, aged barely seventeen and having fled the Great Famine in Ireland, signs up for the U.S. Army in the 1850s. With his brother in arms, John Cole, Thomas goes on to fight in the Indian Wars--against the Sioux and the Yurok--and, ultimately, the Civil War. Orphans of terrible hardships themselves, the men find these days to be vivid and alive, despite the horrors they see and are complicit in.
Moving from the plains of Wyoming to Tennessee, Sebastian Barry’s latest work is a masterpiece of atmosphere and language. An intensely poignant story of two men and the makeshift family they create with a young Sioux girl, Winona, Days Without End is a fresh and haunting portrait of the most fateful years in American history and is a novel never to be forgotten.
Hailed by the San Francisco Chronicle as "the finest book to come out of Europe this year," The Whereabouts of Eneas McNulty is acclaimed Irish playwright Sebastian Barry's lyrical tale of a fugitive everyman.
Sebastian Barry's latest novel, Days Without End, is now available.
For Eneas McNulty, a happy, innocent childhood in County Sligo in the early 1900s gives way to an Ireland wracked by violence and conflict. Unable to find work in the depressed times after World War I, Eneas joins the British-led police force, the Royal Irish Constabulary--a decision that alters the course of his life. Branded a traitor by Irish nationalists and pursued by IRA hitmen, Eneas is forced to flee his homeland, his family, and Viv, the woman he loves. His wandering terminates on the Isle of Dogs, a haven for sailors, where a lifetime of loss is redeemed by a final act of generosity. The Whereabouts of Eneas McNulty is the story of a lost man and a compelling saga that illuminates Ireland's complex history.
Deux frères célibataires, sexagénaires : Mick et Josey. Ce dernier est simple d'esprit. Ils vivent en retraités dans une ferme isolée du côté de Cork. Leurs conversations quotidiennes, au plus près des réalités de la vie campagnarde et du temps qu'il fait, roulent sur le passé et le présent. Leurs parents morts interviennent à leur tour sur scène avec eux. Un défilé un peu chaotique de fantasmes et de réalité lourde.
'As they used to say in Ireland, the devil only comes into good things.'Narrated by Lilly Bere, On Canaan's Side opens as she mourns the loss of her grandson, Bill. The story then goes back to the moment she was forced to flee Sligo, at the end of the First World War, and follows her life through into the new world of America, a world filled with both hope and danger.At once epic and intimate, Lilly's narrative unfurls as she tries to make sense of the sorrows and troubles of her life and of the people whose lives she has touched. Spanning nearly seven decades, it is a novel of memory, war, family-ties and love, which once again displays Sebastian Barry's exquisite prose and gift for storytelling.
Following the end of the First World War, Eneas McNulty joins the British-led Royal Irish Constabulary. With all those around him becoming soldiers of a different kind, however, it proves to be the defining decision of his life when, having witnessed the murder of a fellow RIC policeman, he is wrongly accused of identifying the executioners. With a sentence of death passed over him he is forced to flee Sligo, his friends, family and beloved girl, Viv.What follows is the story of this flight, his subsequent wanderings, and the haunting pull of home that always afflicts him. Tender, witty, troubling and tragic, The Whereabouts of Eneas McNulty tells the secret history of a lost man.
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.'A stunning achievement ... Barry has written one of the most moving fictional accounts of war that surely must rank alongside those real-life testimonies of Owen and Sasson.' Sunday Tribune'The story grips, shocks and saddens; but most importantly refuses to be forgotten.' The Times'In darkly beautiful, inventive and evocative prose Barry tells the filthy truths of war.' Ireland on Sunday'With disarming lyricism, Barry's novel leads the readers into a hellish no-man's-land, where the true madness of war can only be felt and understood rather than said.' Observer'[It] passionately documents a period of collective sacrifice and courage across Europe and beyond, as well as momentous political upheaval in Ireland.' Time Out'The most remarkable shared imaginative universe in Irish writing belongs to the poet, playwright and novelist Sebastian Barry who, like an archaeologist, has slowly and deftly delved back through his myriad ancestors to let them breathe again ... A Long Long Way is a major novel ... perhaps his greatest work.' Dermot Bolger, Sunday Independent'It is more mature, more modulated, more quietly challenging than any of his fiction heretofore, A Long Long Way therefore deserves to win for Barry a renewed attention.' Irish Times'A deeply moving story of courage and fidelity' J M Coetzee'Many say Sebastian Barry writes like an angel and they are right, provided they remember he is on the side of the angels that fell. He shares his longing that his heroes might roar with a horrified I will not serve. But they do serve and are destroyed. Then his sympathy overwhelms, as it does in A Long Long Way. A possessed, powerful novel.' Frank McGuinness'This is Sebastian Barry's song of innocence and experience, composed with poetic grace and an eye, both unflinching and tender, for savage detail and moments of pure beauty. It is also an astonishing display of Barry's gift for creating a memorable character, whom he has written, indelibly, back into a history which continues to haunt us.' Colm Tobin'The story of young Willie Dunne, caught between the competing and irreconcilable loyalties of family, faith and fatherland, is tragic - as indeed the stories of so many young Irishmen who joined up in 1914 must have been, whether they died or lived. But even more powerful is Sebastian Barry's prose, which fuses the vernacular with the poetic, in a way that is lyrical and yet entirely apt. Willie Dunne's voice, like his dilemmas, has the resonance of authenticity.' Hew Strachan, author of The First World War'As always, I enjoyed the way in which Barry tells the Irish story from a reverse angle, from the un-easy, anti-heroic point of view. He proves once again that the artist makes the best historian, and that the tragic figures who are wrong-footed by history, provide the most compelling account of the past.' Hugo Hamilton
Jack McNulty is a 'temporary gentleman', an Irishman whose commission in the British army in the Second World War was never permanent. In 1957, sitting in his lodgings in Accra, he urgently sets out to write his story. He feels he cannot take one step further, or even hardly a breath, without looking back at all that has befallen him.He is an ordinary man, both petty and heroic, but he has seen extraordinary things. He has workedand wandered around the world - as a soldier, an engineer, a UN observer - trying to follow his childhood ambition to better himself. And he has had a strange and tumultuous marriage. Mai Kirwan was a great beauty of Sligo in the 1920s, a vivid mind, but an elusive and mysterious figure too. Jack married her, and shared his life with her, but in time she slipped from his grasp.A heart-breaking portrait of one man's life - of his demons and his lost love - The Temporary Gentleman is, ultimately, a novel about Jack's last bid for freedom, from the savage realities of the past and from himself.
Praised as a “master storyteller” (The Wall Street Journal) and hailed for his “flawless use of language” (Boston Herald), Irish author and playwright Sebastian Barry has created a powerful new novel about divided loyalties and the realities of war.
In 1914, Willie Dunne, barely eighteen years old, leaves behind Dublin, his family, and the girl he plans to marry in order to enlist in the Allied forces and face the Germans on the Western Front. Once there, he encounters a horror of violence and gore he could not have imagined and sustains his spirit with only the words on the pages from home and the camaraderie of the mud-covered Irish boys who fight and die by his side.; Dimly aware of the political tensions that have grown in Ireland in his absence, Willie returns on leave to find a world split and ravaged by forces closer to home. Despite the comfort he finds with his family, he knows he must rejoin his regiment and fight until the end. With grace and power, Sebastian Barry vividly renders Willie’s personal struggle as well as the overwhelming consequences of war.
Longlisted for the Man Booker Prize, a mesmerizing new novel from the award-winning author of The Secret Scripture
A first-person narrative of Lilly Bere’s life, On Canaan’s Side opens as the eighty-five-year-old Irish émigré mourns the loss of her grandson, Bill. Lilly, the daughter of a Dublin policeman, revisits her eventful past, going back to the moment she was forced to flee Ireland at the end of the First World War. She continues her tale in America, where--far from her family--she first tastes the sweetness of love and the bitterness of betrayal.
Spanning nearly seven decades, Sebastian Barry’s extraordinary fifth novel explores memory, war, family ties, love, and loss, distilling the complexity and beauty of life into his haunting prose.
An epic story of family, love, and unavoidable tragedy from the two-time Man Booker Prize finalist
Sebastian Barry 's novels have been hugely admired by readers and critics, and in 2005 his novel A Long Long Way was shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize. In The Secret Scripture, Barry revisits County Sligo, Ireland, the setting for his previous three books, to tell the unforgettable story of Roseanne McNulty. Once one of the most beguiling women in Sligo, she is now a resident of Roscommon Regional Mental Hospital and nearing her hundredth year. Set against an Ireland besieged by conflict, The Secret Scripture is an engrossing tale of one woman's life, and a vivid reminder of the stranglehold that the Catholic church had on individuals throughout much of the twentieth century.
Soon to be a film starring Jessica Chastain and Vanessa Redgrave.
From his grave in the precincts of Canterbury Cathedral, Dallas Sweetman is called to give account. He tells a story of love and death, jealousy and miraculous happenings, of the divided loyalties of Protestants and Catholics in the Elizabethan Age. Before us, his judges, Dallas seeks to justify the actions of his life. But is he telling the truth? And can he be forgiven?The lost tradition of staging new plays at Canterbury Cathedral, most famously T. S. Eliot's Murder in the Cathedral, was revived with the premiere of Sebastian Barry's Dallas Sweetman in September 2008.
A stunning new novel from the two-time Man Booker shortlisted author of The Secret Scripture
In this highly anticipated new novel, Irishman Jack McNulty is a 'temporary gentleman'-'an Irishman whose commission in the British army in World War II was never permanent. Sitting in his lodgings in Accra, Ghana, in 1957, he's writing the story of his life with desperate urgency. He cannot take one step further without examining all the extraordinary events that he has seen. A lifetime of war and world travel-'as a soldier in World War II, an engineer, a UN observer-'has brought him to this point. But the memory that weighs heaviest on his heart is that of the beautiful Mai Kirwan, and their tempestuous, heartbreaking marriage. Mai was once the great beauty of Sligo, a magnetic yet unstable woman who, after sharing a life with Jack, gradually slipped from his grasp.
Award-winning author Sebastian Barry's The Temporary Gentleman is the sixth book in his cycle of separate yet interconnected novels that brilliantly reimagine characters from Barry's own family.
It is 1959 in Wicklow, Ireland, and Annie and her cousin Sarah are living and working together to keep Sarah's small farm running. Suddenly, Annie's young niece and nephew are left in their care.
Unprepared for the chaos that the two children inevitably bring, but nervously excited nonetheless, Annie finds the interruption of her normal life and her last chance at happiness complicated further by the attention being paid to Sarah by a local man with his eye on the farm.
A summer of adventure, pain, delight, and, ultimately, epiphany unfolds for both the children and their caretakers in this poignant and exquisitely told story of innocence, loss, and reconciliation.
Celebrated children's writer Hans Christian Andersen arrives, unannounced, for a stay at Gad's Hill Place in the Kent marshes - home to Charles Dickens and his large, charismatic family.To the lonely and eccentric guest, the members of Dickens' household seem to live a life of unreachable bliss. But with his broken English, Andersen doesn't at first see the storms brewing within the family: undeclared passions, a son about to go to India, and a growing strangeness at the heart of Dickens' marriage.Andersen's English by Sebastian Barry premiered at the Theatre Royal, Bury, in February 2010 in a production by Out of Joint.
See, love between a man and a woman, it's - private. It happens where you never do see it. In rooms.Italy 1 - Ireland 0...The score that marked Ireland's demoralizing exit from Italia '90 took its toll. No more so than for Janet and Joe Brady of Parnell Street who lost far more than the match that night. Some years on, Joe and Janet reveal the intimacies of their love and the rupture of their marriage, through interconnecting monologues that also evoke their life-long love affair with Dublin city itself.Sebastian Barry's explores with vivid tenderness the devastating effects of public and private acts of violence. This is an intimate, heroic tale of ordinary and extraordinary life on the streets of Dublin.Fishamble's world premiere of The Pride of Parnell Street opened at the Tricycle Theatre, London, and as part of the Dublin Theatre Festival at the Tivoli Theatre, Dublin, in September 2007.
Whistling PsycheA dark night, an old waiting room and two supposed strangers eager to reach their destinations. In the cold hours that rest between nightfall and daybreak, silent questions prompt unexpected revelations. Two souls share a passion for reform, but only one - Miss Nightingale - has been honoured. The other, Dr Barry, would never receive the same acclaim, but notoriety came after death and for a very different reason . . .Whistling Psyche premièred at the Almeida Theatre, London in May 2004.Fred and Jane explores the deep and sustaining friendship between two nuns, Anna and Beatrice, as they recall the trials and joys of religious life.'This is Barry at his best: evocative, gentle, suffused with the beauty of the simple and the joy of turning the strange into the familiar.' Sunday Tribune'A rare delight. A clear-running joy.' Sunday Independent'A triumph in its own right.' RTEFred and Jane premièred at Bewley's Cafe Theatre, Dublin in 2002.