Kevin Barry - book author
Kevin Barry is an Irish writer. He is the author of two collections of short stories, and the novel City of Bohane, which was the winner of the 2013 International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award.
Kevin Barry is the author of books: Night Boat to Tangier, City of Bohane, Beatlebone, Dark Lies the Island, There are Little Kingdoms, Town and Country: New Irish Short Stories, The Coast of Leitrim, Beer Trip to Llandudno, The Shortlist: The Sunday Times EFG Private Bank Short Story Award 2012, Winter Pages vol 1
Forty years in the future. The once-great city of Bohane on the west coast of Ireland is on its knees, infested by vice and split along tribal lines. There are the posh parts of town, but it is in the slums and backstreets of Smoketown, the tower blocks of the Northside Rises and the eerie bogs of Big Nothin' that the city really lives.
For years, the city has been in the cool grip of Logan Hartnett, the dapper godfather of the Hartnett Fancy gang. But there's trouble in the air. They say his old nemesis is back in town; his trusted henchmen are getting ambitious; and his missus wants him to give it all up and go straight... And then there's his mother.
City of Bohane is a visionary novel that blends influences from film and the graphic novel, from Trojan beats and calypso rhythms, from Celtic myth and legend, from fado and the sagas, and from all the great inheritance of Irish literature. A work of mesmerising imagination and vaulting linguistic invention, it is a taste of the glorious and new.
It is 1978, and John Lennon has escaped New York City to try to find the island off the west coast of Ireland he bought eleven years prior. Leaving behind domesticity, his approaching forties, his inability to create, and his memories of his parents, he sets off to calm his unquiet soul in the comfortable silence of isolation. But when he puts himself in the hands of a shape-shifting driver full of Irish charm and dark whimsy, what ensues can only be termed a magical mystery tour.
Beatlebone is a tour de force of language and literary imagination that marries the most improbable elements to the most striking effect. It is a book that only Kevin Barry would attempt, let alone succeed in pulling off—a Hibernian high wire act of courage, nerve, and great beauty.
A kiss that just won't happen. A disco at the end of the world. A teenage goth on a terror mission. And OAP kiddie-snatchers, scouse real-ale enthusiasts, and occult weirdness in the backwoods.
Dark Lies the Island is a collection of unpredictable stories about love and cruelty, crimes, desperation, and hope from the man Irvine Welsh has described as 'the most arresting and original writer to emerge from these islands in years'. Every page is shot through with the riotous humour, sympathy and blistering language that mark Kevin Barry as a pure entertainer and a unique teller of tales.
Published in 2011, New Irish Short Stories, edited by Joseph O'Connor, has sold over 10,000 copies to date and featured Kevin Barry's 'Beer Trip to Llandudno' - winner of the 2012 Sunday Times EFG Short Story Prize - as well as stories by William Trevor, Dermot Bolger and Roddy Doyle which went on to be Afternoon Readings on BBC Radio 4.
‘Beer Trip to Llandudno’ was the winner of the Sunday Times/EFG Private Bank short story prize, and is taken from Kevin Barry’s collection Dark Lies the Island, available now in both physical and digital editions.
This is a limited edition Waterstones exclusive.
Kevin Barry is the IMPAC-award winning author of the novels Beatlebone and City of Bohane and the story collections Dark Lies the Island and There are Little Kingdoms. He edited Town and Country: New Irish Short Stories for Faber and Faber.
Olivia Smith has published widely as an academic. She is currently working on a project on Irish Law and Irish Letters.
Contributors and interviewees include:
Jeppe Gjervig Gram
Mary-Kate O Flanagan