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    The Troubles (Phoenix) (Paperback) By (author) J. G. (James Gordon) Farrell

    05

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    DescriptionMajor Brendan Archer travels to Ireland - to the Majestic Hotel and to the fiancee he acquired on a rash afternoon's leave three years ago. Despite her many letters, the lady herself proves elusive, and the Major's engagement is short-lived. But he is unable to detach himself from the alluring discomforts of the crumbling hotel. Ensconced in the dim and shabby splendour of the Palm Court, surrounded by gently decaying old ladies and proliferating cats, the Major passes the summer. So hypnotic are the faded charms of the Majestic, the Major is almost unaware of the gathering storm. But this is Ireland in 1919 - and the struggle for independence is about to explode with brutal force.


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  • J G Farrell's Troubles5

    Terence Jessop Not so much a review; more a song of praise for a memorable book. In a world full of books there are few that I have bothered to read twice, because, once one knows what happens, it is usually hard to derive the same enjoyment from what one is reading for the second time. But when I last read J. G. Farrell's Troubles for the second time some years ago it seemed just as fresh and enjoyable a read. I will never forget the images of the old hotel, the conservatory with its forest of tropical plants bursting through the floor, the flock of elderly female residents and the wonderful dilapidated gardens. If it were a real place, and had not burned down, I would go and stay there in a shot. Whenever I see or read anything about the Irish civil war the image that comes to my mind is that of the major buried up to his neck on the shore with the tide incoming. What a pleasure this book was. For years I have been praising this novel (and its semi sequel The Singapore Grip, which also repaid with pleasure a second read). Praise to Mr. Farrell and regrets that he died so young. What joys his writing would have brought us if he had lived for another thirty years or more. Praise too to the judges of the lost Man Booker Prize for awarding the same to a great book. I think i will just have to read it again.
    Terry Jessop, Sydney. by Terence Jessop

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