By J. L. Carr

ISBN-10: 1590176839

ISBN-13: 9781590176832

In J. L. Carr's deeply charged poetic novel, Tom Birkin, a veteran of the good battle and a damaged marriage, arrives within the distant Yorkshire village of Oxgodby the place he's to revive a lately found medieval mural within the neighborhood church. dwelling within the bell tower, surrounded by way of the resplendent nation-state of excessive summer time, and laboring on a daily basis to discover an nameless painter's depiction of the apocalypse, Birkin reveals that he himself has been restored to a brand new, and hopeful, attachment to existence. yet summer season ends, and with the paintings performed, Birkin needs to depart. Now, lengthy after, as he displays at the passage of time and the facility of artwork, he unearths in his stories a few comfort for all that has been misplaced.

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Don’t get the idea’ – he was out of breath, and his hands flapped – ‘don’t you believe that I’m complaining for the hell of it. I know you don’t have any influence, and you’re just a poor fellow yourself. ’ And he beat the table with his fist several times, not taking his eyes off it as he did so. ‘I’ve served on so many ships in my time’ – and here he reeled off a list of twenty names as if it was a single word, Karl felt quite giddy – ‘and with distinction, I was praised, I was a worker of the kind my captains liked, I even served on the same clipper for several years’ – he rose, as if that had been the high point of his life – ‘and here on this bathtub, where everything is done by rote, where they’ve no use for imagination – here I’m suddenly no good, here I’m always getting in Schubal’s way, I’m lazy, I deserve to get kicked out, they only pay me my wages out of the kindness of their hearts.

Well, you’re right about that,’ said the man with some pride, and carried on tinkering with the lock of a small suitcase, repeatedly shutting it with both hands to listen to the sound of the lock as it snapped shut. ’ asked Karl. ’ Karl asked to reassure himself, as he’d heard a lot about the dangers for new arrivals in America, especially coming from Irishmen. ‘Yes, yes,’ said the man. Still Karl hesitated. Then the man abruptly grabbed the door handle, and pulling it to, swept Karl into the room with him.

I’ve lost my way,’ said Karl. ’ ‘Well, you’re right about that,’ said the man with some pride, and carried on tinkering with the lock of a small suitcase, repeatedly shutting it with both hands to listen to the sound of the lock as it snapped shut. ’ asked Karl. ’ Karl asked to reassure himself, as he’d heard a lot about the dangers for new arrivals in America, especially coming from Irishmen. ‘Yes, yes,’ said the man. Still Karl hesitated. Then the man abruptly grabbed the door handle, and pulling it to, swept Karl into the room with him.

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A Month in the Country by J. L. Carr


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