Books

For Two Thousand Years

Mihail Sebastian (and others)

'Nothing I have read is more affecting than Mihail Sebastian's magnificent, haunting 1934 novel, For Two Thousand Years' - Philippe Sands, Guardian Books of the Year

A prescient interwar masterpiece, available in English for the first time

'Absolutely, definitively alone', a young Jewish student in Romania tries to make sense of a world that has decided he doesn't belong. Spending his days walking the streets and his nights drinking and gambling, meeting revolutionaries, zealots, lovers and libertines, he adjusts his eyes to the darkness that falls over Europe, and threatens to destroy him.

Mihail Sebastian's 1934 novel was written amid the anti-Semitism which would, by the end of the decade, force him out of his career and turn his friends and colleagues against him. For Two Thousand Years is a lucid, heart-wrenching chronicle of resilience and despair, broken layers of memory and the terrible forces of history.

Notes from a Turkish Whorehouse

Philip Ó Ceallaigh

A performance artist opens his chest and displays his beating heart on stage. A young man walks through the hills of south-west Romania, where the locals have peculiar ideas about gold. On the morning of a medical examination, a woman tries to coax her husband off the roof. A smuggler pays off an old debt to his sister and resigns himself to a life of honest toil in the mine-shafts of his home town. A mysterious rodent named Brigitte enters the lives of two old men. And, in the astonishing long story 'In the Neighbourhood', the inhabitants of a crumbling tower-block go about their business, unforgettably. The stories of Philip Ó Ceallaigh create a world that is utterly original and yet immediately recognizable - a world of ordinary people grappling with work and idleness, ambition and frustration, wildness and sobriety, love and lust and decay. Scabrously honest, screamingly funny and beautifully crafted, Notes from a Turkish Whorehouse is a brilliant debut from a writer who cannot be ignored by anyone who cares about the art of fiction.

The Pleasant Light of Day

Philip Ó Ceallaigh

Philip Ó Ceallaigh's first collection of stories, Notes from a Turkish Whorehouse, established him as one of the most vital and distinctive new voices in fiction. The Pleasant Light of Day confirms his enormous talent and presses brilliantly into new territory. Whether he is imagining a father and son walking the streets of Cairo or concocting a hilarious parody of a certain wildly popular inspirational writer from Brazil, Philip Ó Ceallaigh is a writer who demands to be read.

Biography

Philip Ó Ceallaigh, a native of County Waterford, currently lives in Bucharest. His first collection of stories, Notes from a Turkish Whorehouse, won the Glen Dimplex New Writers Award for fiction and was shortlisted for the Frank O'Connor International Short Story Award. Philip won the Rooney Prize, which is awarded annually to an Irish writer under forty, in 2006.