Strange Flowers: A Novel (Paperback)

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Longlisted for the Dublin Literary Awards

“Mr. Ryan writes conspicuously beautiful prose… The fleeting happiness and abiding melancholy of the asymmetry, heightened by the intimately rendered surroundings, brings out Mr. Ryan’s most sensuous and emotive writing.” The Wall Street Journal

From the Booker nominated author of From a Low and Quiet Sea, Donal Ryan's new novel follows the Gladney family across three generations seeking the true meaning of what it is to find home and love.

In 1973, twenty-year-old Moll Gladney takes a morning bus from her rural home in Ireland and disappears. Bewildered and distraught, Paddy and Kit must confront an unbearable prospect: that they will never see their daughter again.

Five years later, Moll returns from London. What - and who - she brings with her will change the course of her family's life forever. Beautiful and devastating, this exploration of loss, alienation and the redemptive power of love reaffirms Donal Ryan as one of the most talented and empathetic writers at work today.

About the Author

Donal Ryan is the author of The Spinning Heart, The Thing About December, A Slanting of the Sun, All We Shall Know, and From a Low and Quiet Sea which have all been published to major acclaim. The Spinning Heart won the Guardian First Book Award, the EU Prize for Literature (Ireland), and Book of the Year at the Irish Book Awards, and was longlisted for the Man Booker Prize and the Desmond Elliott Prize. From a Low and Quiet Sea was nominated for the Booker. Donal holds a Writing Fellowship at the University of Limerick. He lives with his wife Anne Marie and their two children just outside of Limerick.

Praise For…

"The novel, as with all Ryan’s work, is tightly compressed, skillfully whittled down to the point where each word carries far more than its weight… Filled with tenderness, and written with the quiet lyricism that has put Ryan on the topmost branch of the flourishing tree of contemporary Irish fiction."
The New York Times Book Review

"The working out of the sadness and secrets of this little family is beautifully done, poignant rather than depressing, and ending on a sweet note. As in his past work, Ryan's prose is a miracle of fluidity, of country talk flowing in and out of people's thoughts, capturing the rural Irish soul in its whole essence as brilliantly as any writer ever has."
Minneapolis Star Tribune

"Ryan (From a Low and Quiet Sea) impresses with this gorgeous and meticulous multigenerational family saga…Fans of Sebastian Barry and Anne Enright will love this delicate and lush portrait." Publishers Weekly

"A must-read." Irish Central

"Here is love as a weapon and a balm. Love as faith, fate and redemption... a gorgeously wrought book - compassionate without dissolving into nostalgia."

"One of the greatest Irish novels of this century so far." Sunday Independent

"Endlessly surprising and incredibly moving." David Nicholls

"A big-hearted, beautiful work of art, full of truth and intensity." Kit de Waal

"Donal Ryan is giving us characters - their angles and their language - that we haven't seen in Irish literature before." Roddy Doyle
Product Details
ISBN: 9780143136392
ISBN-10: 0143136399
Publisher: Penguin Books
Publication Date: June 15th, 2021
Pages: 240
Language: English