The Queen of Dirt Island

The Queen of Dirt Island

From the Booker-longlisted No.1 bestselling author of Strange Flowers

Summary

From the award-winning, Booker longlisted author of the number one bestseller, STRANGE FLOWERS, a searing, jubilant novel about four generations of women and the love and stories that bind them.

'One of the finest novelists writing today... a haunting, exquisite masterpiece.' RACHEL JOYCE

'A generous mosaic of a novel about the staying power of love and pride and history and family' COLUM McCANN

'Beautiful, compassionate ... Donal Ryan at his inimitable best.' MAGGIE O'FARRELL

The Aylward women are mad about each other, but you wouldn't always think it. You'd have to know them to know - in spite of what the neighbours might say about raised voices and dramatic scenes - that their house is a place of peace, filled with love, a refuge from the sadness and cruelty of the world.

Their story begins at an end and ends at a beginning. It's a story of terrible betrayals and fierce loyalties, of isolation and togetherness, of transgression, forgiveness, desire, and love. About all the things family can be and all the things it sometimes isn't. More than anything, it is an uplifting celebration of fierce, loyal love and the powerful stories that last generations.
_________

'Beautifully poised, sad, poetic and human....I loved every single line.' IAN RANKIN

'His paragraphs are unnoticeably beautiful, his heart always on show' ANNE ENRIGHT

'Endlessly surprising and incredibly moving' DAVID NICHOLLS

'A life-enhancing talent' SEBASTIAN BARRY

'I would struggle to think of any other Irish author working today who writes with as much compassion as Donal Ryan' LOUISE O'NEILL

Reviews

  • This is a generous mosaic of a novel about the staying power of love and pride and history and family. While Donal Ryan is never afraid of "all the meanness and sorrow of the world," he also manages to excavate the thrilling beauties that hold us together. He manages, with wit and grace, to illuminate the anonymous corners of human experience and get at the underworld of our souls.
    COLUM McCANN

About the author

Donal Ryan

Donal Ryan is an award-winning author from Nenagh, County Tipperary, whose work has been published in over twenty languages to major critical acclaim. The Spinning Heart won the Guardian First Book Award, the EU Prize for Literature (Ireland), and Book of the Year at the Irish Book Awards; it was shortlisted for the International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award, longlisted for the Man Booker Prize and the Desmond Elliott Prize, and was voted 'Irish Book of the Decade'. His fourth novel, From a Low and Quiet Sea, was longlisted for the Man Booker Prize, shortlisted for the Costa Novel Award 2018, and won the Jean Monnet Prize for European Literature. His most recent novel, Strange Flowers, was voted Novel of the Year at the Irish Book Awards, and was a number one bestseller. Donal lectures in Creative Writing at the University of Limerick. He lives with his wife Anne Marie and their two children just outside Limerick City.
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