Old God’s Time
A hugely moving novel of memory, love, mystery and reckoning, from one of our most soulful living writers.
There were no saints in any era, Tom knew, just good men and bad, and sometimes both in the one bottle. Retired policeman Tom Kettle is enjoying the quiet of his new home, a lean-to annexed to a white Victorian Castle in Dalkey overlooking the sea. For months he has barely seen a soul, but his peace is interrupted when two former colleagues turn up at his door to ask questions about a decades-old case. A traumatic case which Tom never quite came to terms with. His peace is further disturbed by a young mother and family who move in next door, a woman on the run from her own troubles. And what of Tom’s family, his wife June and their two children?
A beautiful, haunting novel, in which nothing is not quite what it seems, Old God’s Time is about what we live through, what we live with, and what will survive of us.
‘His work reminds us how much we need these rare gifts of the natural storyteller.’ – TESSA HADLEY
‘Barry is the laureate of empathy.’ – Sunday Independent ‘Sebastian Barry faces down the most challenging of subjects with an unflinching pen, using blood for ink. Yet at its heart, Old God’s Time is also a love story, of two souls bonded by trauma. Narrated by a retired guard who begins to lose control of his fragile senses as his past clashes with the present, it is shocking, stunning and extraordinarily brave. Barry has once again written a character for the ages.’ – Liz Nugent