As tender as it is heartbreaking, this is a brilliant debut from an exciting new voice in Irish fiction. Mark Casey has left home, the rural Irish community where his family has farmed the same land for generations, to study for a doctorate in Dublin, a vibrant, contemporary city full of possibility. To his father, Tom, who needs help baling the hay and ploughing the fields, Mark's pursuit isn't work at all, and indeed Mark finds himself whiling away his time with pubs and parties. His is a life without focus or responsibility, until he meets Joanne Lynch, a trainee solicitor whom he finds irresistible. Joanne too has a past to escape from and for a brief time she and Mark share the chaos and rapture of a new love affair, until the lightning strike of tragedy changes everything. "Solace" is a work to be admired for its spare, intense lyricism, its range, and its deeply compassionate portrayal of life as it is lived now.
Winner of the Bord Gáis Energy Irish Book Awards Sunday Independent Best Newcomer of the Year Award for 2011 and shortlisted for the Irish Book Awards Hughes & Hughes Irish Novel of the Year Award for 2011.