(MODERN: from Last Evenings on Earth, Vintage)
Macabre, playing with a sense of the diabolical lodged in the relationship between two sisters and their need for protection from an unseen enemy and one man’s attempt to provide that. The narrative has an inevitable force that hides nothing, shocks and yet still haunts. The reader is forced to look through the windows of an exposed home fully aware of complicity.
(MODERN: as yet uncollected)
Doyle’s short stories are a wonderful surprise. It’s rare a novelist who can craft them quite as well as this. Here, Doyle explores love. Not new, not erotic, not dysfunctional, not embittered – the usual territory of the short story writer. This is the most difficult love for a writer of all: that of years of intimacy, knowledge and fulfilment. Middle-aged love rendered clear, unsentimental and beautiful.
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