Birchwood

John Banville

06 August 2010
9780330372329
176 pages

Synopsis

Told with lyrical prose, John Banville's Birchwood is the elegiac story of the aristocratic decline of an eccentric family riddled with dark secrets.

Once the big house on an Irish estate, Birchwood has turned into a baroque madhouse for its ruined inhabitants. One disaster succeeds another, until young Gabriel Godkin runs away to join a travelling circus and look for his long-lost twin sister. Soon he discovers that famine and unrest stalk the countryside, and Ireland is ruined too.