Toibin explores a family suffering from a long estrangement brought back together by a crisis. I related to this on many levels. It is somewhat slow going in the beginning but the stories told by the characters in the middle are worth the wait. There are a lot of Irish references such as places and words that we do not use in English that are a little confusing to the American reader but other than that it was a great read.
I loved this book. It deals with issues between mother, daughter and granddaughter that rang true within my own life. More striking than the writing is what was not said, which we all know can be more powerful. Excellent. I would keep this book, except for the desire to share it with others.
It is Ireland in the early 1990s. Helen,, her mother, Lily, and her grandmother, Dora, have come together to tend to Helen's brother, Declan, who is dying of AIDS. With Declan's two friends, the six of them are forced to plumb the shoals of their own histories and to come to terms with each other. Shortlisted for the Booker Prize.