EGGSHELLS (Melville Press), by Irish author, Caitriona Lally, is a story about being square in a round world told in a uniquely whimsical manner, which I hope everyone gets the opportunity to read. I’m announcing to all readers of this post that it’s my first pick for “Best Books of 2017!” It tackles loneliness, friendship and even hope, in ways that had me laughing and nearly crying at the same time.
Vivian has never felt as if she belonged, and no wonder. Her parents told her at a young age that she was so odd, she must have been “left by fairies.” Now an adult, the neighbors think she’s crazy, her sister wants nothing to do with her and social workers have written her off as a nuisance.
She believes she’s a changeling so she roams the streets of Dublin, Ireland in search of the portal that will allow her into a place where she fits in. She’s obsessed with signs and words and keeps meticulous lists and hand drawn maps, as she wanders. She decides to change her life and find a friend, a friend specifically named Penelope. She posts an advertisement on a tree and soon a person shows up, well-matched in strangeness, and a friendship begins, as Vivian’s life changes. (Shocker: Her new friend’s name turns out not to be Penelope.)
EGGSHELLS is distinctly Irish. Author, Caitriona Lally, borrows from Irish tradition and folklore and it recalls James Joyce’s, DUBLINERS in the way Vivian travels around Dublin, both passive (on the bus) and active (on foot). EGGSHELLS is Lally’s debut novel and I can’t wait to read what she writes next.
FYI: I love, love, love the cover!
CAITRIONA LALLY studied English Literature in Trinity College Dublin. She has had a colorful employment history (don’t we all?), working as an abstract writer and a copywriter, as well as a home helper in New York and an English teacher in Japan. She has traveled extensively around Europe, Asia, the Middle East, and South America. Caitriona was shortlisted for “Newcomer of the Year” in the Irish Book Awards in 2015.
Connect with Caitriona on Twitter.
Thanks to TLC Book Tours http://www.tlcbooktours.com and Melville House, we have one copy of EGGSHELLS to giveaway. Just tell us something you know about Ireland or The Irish. Perhaps, you are Irish! While reading EGGSHELLS, I just found the city of Dublin so intriguing. I’d love to visit sometime – soon. We’ll announce a winner Monday.