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

Friday, May 12, 2017

Smile by Roddy Doyle (2017)

Smile is the ninth novel by Roddy Doyle I have read and posted upon.  Obviously I greatly enjoy and admire his mostly set in Ireland novels.  I have also read a few of his short stories.

Smile focuses on a middle-aged recently divorced man, Victor Forde, on his own for the first time in years.  He has gotten in the habit of going to the same pub every night for a pint.  One evening a man his age, who he does not quite recall, comes over to speak.  It turns out they went to school together, the teachers were Christian Brothers.  The ensuing conversations bring back memories he had not wanted surfaced of sexual abuse by one of the Brothers.  The man had a sister that Victor fancied.

Flashing back to memories of childhood to those of his marriage we learn Victor was a well known radio commentator famous for his shocking remarks.  His wife is a very well known celebrity and a great beauty.

Like his other novels, Smile is very much a dialogue driven work, the conversations are sharp, funny and real.  We are given real insight into Victor.  As you read on you begin to reevaluate your assessment of Victor.

Smile was a great pleasure to read, just as I expected it would be.

I was kindly given a review copy of this book.

Mel u
The Reading Life

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