The Paper Man

The Paper Man

‘One of our finest writers’ John Banville

Summary

**A BOOK OF 2023 IN IRISH TIMES, RTÉ GUIDE AND SUNDAY INDEPENDENT**

An unforgettable and sweeping interwar love story, from the Costa-shortlisted and bestselling Irish author of Life Sentences

'Gorgeous' SARA BAUME
'His most ambitious work to date' JOHN BANVILLE
'A beautiful, layered novel' ELAINE FEENEY

1980s Cork. Jack Shine discovers a shoe box full of love letters in his mother's belongings. Rebekah came to Cork alone as a young Jewish refugee from Vienna when the Second World War broke out. She died soon after, and Jack never learned of his father's identity. Why did she keep newspaper clippings about a famous footballer player? Who was 'The Paper Man'?

As Jack uncovers his mother's life, he is transported to 1930s Vienna, a bustling city on the brink of war. At the heart of the action is Matthias Sindelar, one of the most famous footballers in the world, known as 'The Paper Man' because of his effortless weave across the pitch. When Sindelar unexpectedly meets Rebekah, both of their lives are changed forever. As war looms, they must accept that their survival will tear them apart.

Based on true events, The Paper Man is the story of twentieth-century Europe and love against the odds. It is a story that will take Jack far from Cork and all the way back to Vienna, and towards The Paper Man.

Reviews

  • Imaginative, beautifully told... Billy O'Callaghan arranges the story superbly
    Spectator

About the author

Billy O'Callaghan

Billy O'Callaghan is the author of the critically acclaimed novel My Coney Island Baby, which has been translated into nine languages and was shortlisted for the Encore Award 2020. Stories in his collection The Boatman and Other Stories were shortlisted for the Costa Short Story Award and for Writing.ie Short Story of the Year in the An Post Irish Book Awards. He lives in Douglas, a village on the edge of Cork City.
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