Short Stories, Irish literature, Classics, Modern Fiction, Contemporary Literary Fiction, The Japanese Novel, Post Colonial Asian Fiction, The Legacy of the Austro-Hungarian Empire and quality Historical Novels are Among my Interests

Monday, February 18, 2013

The Van by Roddy Doyle

The Van by Roddy Doyle  (1991, 193 pages, book three of The Barrytown Trilogy)

The Barrytown Trilogy

Please consider participating in Irish Short Story Month-March 1 to March 31-

The Van is the eighth novel by Roddy Doyle I have read.   Obviously I like and respect his work  a lot.    The Van is the last in a series of novels, The Barrytown Trilogy, about a working class family in Dublin, the Rabbitte family.  In the final book of the trilogy the father of the family, Vernon, and his best friend Bimbo set up a food van selling fish, chips, burgers, candy bars and a few other things.   I think this is my favorite novel of the trilogy but I really enjoyed them all.

It was so much fun to see the lads take a horrible looking van and turn it into a very much profit making food van.   There are, as we always find in a Doyle novel, lots of great conversations, lots of drinking and lots of people using the word "f**k" in various variations.    I am assuming it is normal in the setting in which this novel is written for a father to use this expression with his children but it seems a little shocking at times and would be considered appalling in the Philippines.  
Watching the food van business develop was just great fun and really pretty exciting.   I felt great when they started making strong money and worried when hooligans attacked the van out of pure meanness   Watching the interplay of the characters was a great treat and Doyle is brilliant at that.   There is still a lot of life in the Rabbitte family and I hope to read more about them one day in a future book.

The next Doyle book I hope to read is his Booker Prize Winning Paddy Clarke Ha Ha.

I really hope to see the movies made from his books one day also.

I will post on his short story "Animals" during Irish Short Story Month.

Mel u


valerie sirr said...

The Van is fun and I enjoyed the film too, but I prefer Paddy Clarke...Enjoy!

Mel u said...

valerie sirr-I am really looking forward to Paddy Clarke-I think I will have once this is completed read all of his novels-kind of sad feeling!