The Colony

174

By Audrey Magee

The clarity of Colm Toibin’s prose is blended with the emotional truth of Anne Enright in this stand-out new novel of belonging and loss

He handed the easel to the boatman, reaching down the pier wall towards the sea.

Mr Lloyd has decided to travel to the island by boat without engine – the authentic experience.

Unbeknownst to him, Mr Masson will also soon be arriving for the summer. Both will strive to encapsulate the truth of this place – one in his paintings, the other by capturing its speech, the language he hopes to preserve.

But the people who live on this rock – three miles long and half-a-mile wide – have their own views on what is being recorded, what is being taken and what is given in return. Soft summer days pass, and the islanders are forced to question what they value and what they desire. As the autumn beckons, and the visitors head home, there will be a reckoning.
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