Seamus Deane's "Reading In the Dark" Book Review by Champ

Seamus Deane's "Reading In the Dark"
This paper reviews Seamus Deane's "Reading In the Dark", a complex novel about a child's reaction to reading a book about Northern Ireland.
# 98757 | 3,205 words | 3 sources | MLA | 2007 | US
Published on Oct 16, 2007 in English (Analysis) , Literature (European (other))

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This paper relates that Seamus Deane's novel "Reading in the Dark" is part autobiographical and many of the recounted intricate events actually have taken place. The author points out that the text is partially a Bildungsroman because, in the first part of the narrator's life it recounts many obstacles; however, unlike in a Bildungsroman, the greatest part of these obstacles remain unresolved as the story comes full circle and the reader finds the narrator in the very same place. The paper concludes that "Reading in the Dark" is an excellent source of historical documentation on Irish culture because the history of the boy's family parallels the history of Ireland itself in its troubled past, full of violence and political secrecy. The paper includes several quotations.

From the Paper:

"The novel revolves around a mystery that makes it resemble a detective story to a certain extent: the disappearance of Uncle Eddie, who is supposed to have been an informer for the IRA. The truth emerges gradually, and the boy narrator who tries to make sense of his family's story is not fully aware of the whole truth until the last part of the novel. The maze of facts and secrecy that involve almost all the members of the boy's family, both close and distant, already plunges the reader into the troubled and heavy atmosphere that the novel is charged with from beginning to the end."

Sample of Sources Used:

  • Cleary, John. Literature, Partition and the Nation-State: Culture and Conflict in Ireland, Israel and Palestine. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2002
  • Deane, Seamus. Reading in the Dark. New York: Vintage, 1997
  • Gerry Smith. Space and the Irish Cultural Imagination. New York: Palgrave, 2001

Cite this Book Review:

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Seamus Deane's "Reading In the Dark" (2007, October 16) Retrieved July 09, 2020, from

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