Book One Hundred 2014:
It seemed only appropriate to finish off an incredible year and a huge project with something Irish and appropriate. I’m glad I did.
He didn’t give himself an easy editorial job, you know, but Tom Morris’s collection of what he calls “cover versions” of the original stories in Joyce’s Dubliners is a combination of the interesting, the bizarre and the downright brilliant. Each either retells, reshapes or just takes a jumping off point from the original story they’re based on.
They vary wildly from John Kelly, Andrew Fox, Mary Morrissy and Sam Coll’s great modernisations of A Little Cloud, After The Race, An Encounter and Grace through Evelyn Conlon’s deft telling of the other half of Two Gallants, John Boyne’s riff on Araby and Belinda McKeon’s Counterparts all the way to the genuine brilliance of Paul Murray’s A Painful Case and Donal Ryan’s Eveline.
It’s one of those books that I feel I should genuinely press into the hands of others. If you’ve never read the original it stands all by itself, if you have there are so many other layers that reveal themselves as you go along. Top stuff.