Patrick Boyle

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David Jenkins

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Patrick Boyle's collection of short stories, A View from Calvary, presents a … traditional, delicate picture of Ireland. The title piece is a novella dealing with the hypocrisy and fragility of friendship—a recurring theme. A famous composer, convinced that he has found contentment and true comradeship in a remote Irish village, becomes the victim of rumours that he is abusing rather than suffering the little children who come unto him…. Suicide follows.

Mr Boyle writes with quiet precision, infusing his stories with gentle humour and sharp moral criticism, fine descriptive touches and an acid view of the Irish character. But the ironies are perhaps too slight, the twists too predictable to make this more than a pleasant, well-wrought book.

David Jenkins, "Skag Hunting," in New Statesman (© 1976 The Statesman & Nation Publishing Co. Ltd.), Vol. 42, No. 2369, August 13, 1976, p. 216.∗

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