This weekend I took myself off to the wilds of Wicklow with two friends and we hiked the entirety of St Kevin’s Way from Hollywood to Glendalough, crossing the long spine of the mountains that divide the county at the Wicklow Gap. This was the route St Kevin had reputedly taken 1,400 years earlier and the phone signal is as poor now as it was back then – not that St Kevin would have minded, since he was of a bit of a hermit. Indeed, it was rumoured when a woman surprised him in his tiny cave in the cliff above the lake at Glendalough, he shoved her out and she fell into the lake below and drowned. Nobody drowned on our trip, thank God, but we all got our feet wet crossing fast-flowing rivers and were generally tired after walking over 30km in one day!
So it was a while before I picked up a text from Grainne Killeen, hard-working book publicist, telling me to check out the Independent review section. I did not get to it until the following morning, when the review by Anne Cunningham was put up online. It is a very positive and encouraging review – a quick extract:
This book is – among other things – an eloquent protest at the wanton waste of a generation in the name of. . . well, does anybody know what, exactly? Susan Lanigan […] is a gifted young writer, and White Feathers is an admirable debut.
And then just as I was relaxing at home after returning from Wicklow, I got a few emails mentioning a review in the Sunday Times by Amy Nora Fitzgibbon. The book has been chosen as their Choice of the Week in fiction, and the writing is described as vivid and fluid, and [the] characters well-conceived and realistic, while the novel has been referred to as a sweeping tale of love and betrayal, a masterful treatment of the terrible choices forced upon citizens during the Great War. I’ve cropped a screencap kindly taken for me:
These are wonderful endorsements for White Feathers and a great end of the weekend!