Reviews

Praise for Jamie O’Connell’s writing:

‘A very enjoyable book… beautifully designed… a great introduction to [Joyce’s] genius. It’s great.’

Michael Bradley, The Arts Show, BBC Radio Ulster on Best-Loved Joyce

 

‘A beautiful and accessible introduction to the writings of James Joyce.’

irishinterest.ie on Best-Loved Joyce 

 

‘O’Connell writes with tenderness and attention, earnestly describing a world in which belief systems have crumbled, where families are in denial about what has destroyed them, where internet sex turns out to be just as vacuous as it sounds, and where commitment to love and friendship is often hazardous.’

The Irish Times on Some Sort of Beauty

 

 ‘…a fresh, engaging and powerful set of stories.’

The Sunday Independent on Some Sort of Beauty

 

‘A stunning debut from a writer of great talent and courage’

Éilís Ní Dhuibhne, author of Shelter of Neighbours, on Some Sort of Beauty

 

‘…youthful, uncanny and highly sophisticated stories. “Demain” and “Some Sort of Beauty” are very sharp and very thorough, all of it written with ink on the red stiletto’

Thomas McCarthy, poet and author of The Merchant Prince, on Some Sort of Beauty

 

‘Jamie O’Connell takes us on an exhilarating road-trip through the trials and triumphs of being young, Irish, ambitious and gay… Very enjoyable. Remarkable for a first book. Great things may be forthcoming.’ 

Books Ireland (September 2012) on Some Sort of Beauty

 

‘immensely enjoyable and incredibly frank’

Dr Eibhear Walshe, Senior Lecturer of English Literature, University College Cork, on Some Sort of Beauty

 

‘I’ve been reading O’Connell’s book… and can attest to how well written it is. In terms of subject matter it is something brand spanking new in Irish short fiction: Celtic Tiger cubs do drugs, have gay sex, wear Prada with pride, and have secretive competitive friendships. The title story is about Jehovah’s Witnesses, surely a first in an Irish short story.’

Nuala Ní Chonchúir, author of Mother America, on Some Sort of Beauty

 

‘…lyrical, distilled, illuminating, some of them unnerving and above all, brave… O’Connell’s fiction is emotionally clear, direct, unshowy, and is the consequence of work, work and more work, as well as huge talent.’

James Ryan, University College Dublin, on Some Sort of Beauty

 

‘…there is a cadence to his debut: a rise and levelling and fall, melodies which recur, a satisfying tempo…a broadly harmonious collection, and my admiration is wholehearted.’

Sara Baume, Southword Journal, on Some Sort of Beauty

 

‘…the power of the book is in the perspectives it chooses, and the very direct way in which O’Connell goes straight to the emotional centre of each story. Family, love, travel, art, sex – he dives straight in there and he has something to say about all of them. This is a good book, from a writer with a great future.’

Keith Ridgway, author of Hawthorn & Child, on Some Sort of Beauty

 

‘Some stories stay with you, and this was one of those stories… with a voice comparable to those created by Roddy Doyle or Pat McCabe.’

Michael O’ Ruairc, writer and historian, introducing ‘On Eating Grass’ (taken from Some Sort of Beauty) at the Irish Writers’ Centre (Spring 2011)

 

‘an impressive maturity of insight and control of language.’’

Kevin Power, author of Bad Day in Blackrock, on A Curious Impulse

 

‘this rich, diverse sparkling anthology is a great testimony to the talents of its twelve contributors’

James Ryan, Lecturer of Creative Writing, University College Dublin, on A Curious Impulse