Book Review. A Derry Tale. John Doyle. 

​This begins in a macabre way and then extends into a more family type drama, with signs that this is set in the past, rather than the present or future.

The first chapter alone is a well written story and, as it details the tale of John, his siblings and parents, could stand alone. I like it tells us of the present moment and also of the moment when his mother dies. I feel this might have been unnecessary, as it gives the reader no incentive to carry on reading. The narrative jumping back and forth is something that often takes place and can be confusing.

This is a story of Catholics, Protestants, poverty, sexual abuse and even, briefly, a transgender person. I feel like I have read similar books to this. I am not sure if this is an autographical novel or not. I find it strange that the front cover is so at odds with the content. It’s misleading.

It feels more like a collection of short stories, some more entertaining than others and can be shocking, even distressing.

If you’re interested in history or Irish history, I would recommend you read this.

Available on 


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