William Trevor is a master of contemporary fiction. He writes with equal authority about the frustrations of life in remote corners of Ireland, and the hollowness of life is prosperous London suburbs. An Anglo-Irishman, Trevor is admired on both sides of the Atlantic, and both sides of the Irish Sea.
In William Trevor: A Study of His Fiction, first published in 1990, Gregory Schirmer analyses Trevor’s novels (such as A Standard of Behaviour and Fools of Fortune) and short stories in detail. He argues that Trevor’s writing is important, both in terms of its mastery of fictional techniques and of the profoundly moral vision that informs it. His view of twentieth-century men and women is subtle and complex, generated by the tension between a humanistic faith in compassion and "connection", and an opposing, more realistic assessment of contemporary society as alienated and disconnected.
Table of Contents
Acknowledgements; 1. "Only Connect": Introduction 2. "A Farce in a Vale of Tears": The Early Novels 3. "The Odour of Ashpits": The Middle Novels 4. "Other People’s Pain": The Late Novels 5. "Such Tales of Woe": The Short Stories 6. "The Weight of Circumstances": The Irish Fiction; Notes; Index