Repetition and the writer
Young John McGahern: Becoming a Novelist by Denis Sampson. Oxford University Press, €26. Reviewed by Tom Mathews.
"John McGahern is a writer's writer," runs the received version. "His prose is that of a poet's." Well, if poetry is "emotion recollected in tranquillity", as Wordsworth would have it, the received version is right on the money. The pared-back language, the morbid sugared with the pastoral, the cynicism morphing into stoicism: all are straight out of Mr Hardy's little black bag. But where is Mr Laurel when he's wanted?
Shakespeare, Joyce and Flaubert are...
Subscribe from just €1 for the first month!
With any subscription you will have access to
Unlimited multi-device access to our iPad, iPhone and Android Apps
Unlimited access to our eReader library
Exclusive daily insight and opinion seven days a week
Create alerts to never miss a subject that matters to you
Get access to exclusive offers for subscribers on gifts and experiences
Get content from Business Post, Business Post Magazines, Connected, Tatler and Food & Wine