CRUEL EASTER by Michael Sandys


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This novel is unsuccessful for the same reason that so many stories of the Irish partition, the ""troubles"" -- the economic, religious, cultural division of the country -- are unsuccessful; they attempt too much. Desmond Farquahar was a renegade- from family, church, state. The ""organization"" in its raids on British installations across the northern border provided for him the means of releasing his pent-up hatred. Everyone in the ""organization"" was there for different reasons: ""Bull"", the sadist, Sylvester, the Communist, Joey, because he worshipped Desmond, and Matt, because his love of country permitted him no compromise. The ""organization"" is finally smashed through betrayal, duplicity of motivation, but in the process Desmond (Dezzy) falls in love with Ismena Robinson, a northern Protestant who had, for love of him, also forsaken family. The author attempts to convey the confirmation of their love through the larger affirmation and promise of the Easter meaning. The effort is as unconvincing as the total work.

Pub Date: April 29th, 1958
Publisher: Pantheon