“Barry's collection of stories crackles with intelligence, wicked humor, and the woes of modern life. Populated by misfits, hapless husbands, and characters whose worst enemies are themselves, the 13 stories that make up this collection are compulsively readable and, like all great fiction, seem effortless. Barry loves the cadence and sound of human speech and his ear for dialogue and narrative is astounding. The stories brim with humor and lines so quotable they demand to be read again. Barry puts a beating heart into each of these stories, a collection that is a must for fans of Irvine Welsh and V.S. Pritchett.”
— Mark Haber, Brazos Bookstore, Houston, TX
Kevin Barry's deliciously wicked collection Dark Lies the Island delivers on the many reckless promises made by his virtuosic and prizewinning debut novel, City of Bohane. It firmly establishes him as both a world-class word slinger and a masterful storyteller.
Kevin Barry is the author of the novel City of Bohane, winner of the International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award, and the story collection There Are Little Kingdoms. He lives in County Sligo, Ireland.
“[Kevin Barry] isn't sparing with his powers. Even his throwaway lines are keepers.” —The New York Times
“He does humor. He does high drama. He even dabbles in horror (of a kind). And he can handle just about any other narrative form you might think of.” —Star Tribune (Minneapolis)
“Barry's best short stories are like a spade to the face . . . [He] earns comparison with the great and shamefully neglected V. S. Pritchett, whose short stories also employed pronounced comic means for serious, compassionate ends.” —The Guardian
“Outstanding . . . [These] stories triumph . . . They are funny, sad, troubling, illuminating, often in equal measure.” —Financial Times
“By the end of a story, Barry has me in full sympathy with someone I might edge away from on the train. His regard for characters big and small and capacity to be funny without playing them for cheap laughs recalls George Saunders.” —The New York Times Book Review
“Stealthy and shimmering . . . Darkness abounds in these thirteen stories, though it takes its different forms: vileness, foreboding, ignorance, isolation, self-delusion, despair.” —The Boston Globe
“Barry is a prose wizard whose stories pulse on the page with all the humor and viciousness of life itself.” —Sam Lipsyte, The Millions
“[Kevin Barry's] prose is almost literally indescribable . . . It's not hard to see a devoted following accrue around this singular talent.” —Irish Independent
“A startlingly unique voice.” —Observer (London)