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By: Siofra O’Donovan

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‘A well-crafted, intelligent story. There is much to admire in O’Donovan’s novel: her treatment of memory and the tricks it can play give the story its shape; her writing is confident and her descriptions powerful, often beautiful. Malinski is a strong debut that marks O’Donovan as a writer to watch.’ – The Irish Times

‘Audacious … O’Donovan’s debut is compelling and full of promise.’ – Irish Independent

‘The language of the novel is porcelain, eerie and crystal. One feels that each word is an exact choice. At the heart of this novel are the great human themes: love, betrayal, hatred, blame, and memory. O’Donovan gets under the skin of her characters and they are sensitively and acutely portrayed. It is refreshing to see such a fine Irish novel take the stage from this side of the Irish Sea.’ – Sunday Business Post

Two young brothers in Lvov, separated by war. Henryk, imprisoned by theNazis with his mother in the family home, flees with her ahead of the advancing Soviets, eventually settling in Ireland. Stanislav takes refuge with an aunt in Krakow, where he lives out the decades of his life. Half a century later, after the fall of communism, Stanislav receives a letter: Henryk, who now styles himself Henry Foley, is coming for a visit.

Malinski is a novel of memory and loss, an exploration of the ways in which human beings invent themselves and imagine other people’s lives. It is written with a concentrated grace that announces Siofra O’Donovan as a major new talent in Irish fiction.

SIOFRA O’DONOVAN was born in Dublin in 1971. She has lived and worked in Poland and northern India.

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1 review for Malinski

  1. Lilliput Press

    “Unequivocally the best first novel I have read, this study of how we are shaped by our past and by the forces of history reveals Siofra O’Donovan as an extraordinarily talented storyteller. The story of two brothers, separated as children in wartime Poland by the blind forces of history, is darkly humorous and deeply touching. Stanislav ekes out a grey existence in Krakow, Henryk lives with his refugee mother in Ireland, both maimed by the horrors of their past. The lives of the two brothers, and their strategies for living with the terrible burden of memory, are presented with infinite sympathy through their own eyes as boys and men. Only with the overthrow of Communism in Poland can the two be reunited and hope of redemption finally be granted. Ms O’Donovan combines references to Polish and Irish history and legend with an ability to conjure up the past so vividly you can taste it. The language is skilfully chosen and worked to evoke by turns laughter and sadness, horror and hope. This is one novel that will leave you wanting more.” DARA CONNOLLY

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Weight 0.5 kg

220 x 140mm, 224pp