I thoroughly enjoyed reading this novel by William Trevor, who died a few months ago. My brother Kevin recommended him to me as I had not previously read any of his work. It’s an old fashioned love story that is beautifully crafted. The construction of Trevor’s sentences and their nice finishes glided me effortlessly through the story, whilst I eagerly waited for the next part to unfold, keen to soak up his beautiful storytelling skills; because it was apparent to me from the outset that I was going to enjoy this story, which was set in rural Tipperary in the 1960s.
It tells the story of Ellie, a young girl who grew up in an orphanage, and now married to an older widower farmer, who although kind to her was dull and predictable. One summer Ellie meets Florian, a photographer who is half Irish and half Italian, from another village a few miles away. He was in the process of selling up his family home and moving abroad after his parents died. But before he goes, Ellie and he share a summer of blissful passion and love before the time comes for them to make up their minds about whether they have a future together or apart.
Trevor was 81 years of age when this novel was first published in 2009. By then he had written dozens of novels and short stories during a lifetime of creative output. He understood the Irish psyche and this novel is full of wit and idiosyncrasies associated with Irish culture. I can definitely recommend this novel to you and I hope to read more of Trevor’s novels in the future now that he has entered my reading domain and have sampled his excellent writing.
© Declan Henry