“It has been a long time since I’ve encountered stories as witty, compassionate, and intellectually scrupulous as Mary O’Donoghue’s. Home and homeland—their push and pull—preoccupy this author, yet never get the better of her.”
“With her delicate touch, keen intelligence, and fine ear for the nuances of language, Mary O’Donoghue explores the restless tension between the pursuit of ‘a brighter life’, and the irresistible pull of home that’s forever fraught with difficulty and complication.”
Written over the course of ten years, while the author has been living in America’s northeast and southeast, Mary O’Donoghue’s stories in The Hour After Happy Hour reach into the wounds of immigration, transit, and exile. Here are modern, surreal dilemmas of rootlessness and failed returns. Here are people in their middle years struggling to be considered, let alone understood, in the fearsome day-to-day of the twenty-first century. Here too are the borders and battlefronts between parents and children. In each of these stories language is a first and last resort, and very sentence holds the force of fate.