Did you fail the cynic test?

I was delighted to come across a review in the Irish Echo Australia by Frank O’Shea.

In the feature, Travels in the Interior, he shares his thoughts on Night Boat to Tangier, by Kevin Barry and A Thousand Roads Home!

Remember, that your local bookshop will happily order in a copy of any book for you,
if they don’t have it in stock! Let’s try to #ShopLocal in 2020!

So much modern fiction is grim and serious that it is good to be reminded that you can have a story where the characters are good people overcoming difficulties. That is certainly the case in this fine novel by Wexford writer Carmel Harrington. I was surprised to learn that it is in fact her seventh book and that she has a dedicated international following.

What makes the book so special is the cast of characters, believable people facing situations that are real.

Frank O’Shea, Irish Echo Australia

To read the full review, click here. But I would like to share this final paragraph in his review, that made me particularly happy. I’m very glad that Frank failed this test and so many more of you too.

If I describe this as a charming story, there is a danger that I may appear to be diminishing it. But it is the kind of book that attracts words like uplifting, warm, endearing, an old-fashioned feel-good story, the kind that will bring tears. It could serve as a good way to test whether you can call yourself a cynic: for the record, this reviewer failed that test.

Frank O’Sheal, Irish Echo Australia


  1. That is a beautiful sentence, Carmel, and has moved me quite profoundly. I was honoured to be praised by the same reviewer some years back. He understood the work, which is always the best praise.

    May we never pass the cynicism test.

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