An incandescent novel from one of our greatest living novelists (The Times) about the inheritance of trauma, wonder, and love across three generations of women.
Nell McDaragh never knew her grandfather, the famed Irish poet Phil McDaragh. But his love poems seem to speak directly to her. Restless, full of verve and wit, twenty-two-year-old Nell leaves her mother Carmel's home to find her voice as a writer and live a life of her choosing. Carmel, too, knows the magic of her Daddo's poetry—and the broken promises within its verses. When Phil abandons the family, Carmel struggles to reconcile "the poet" with the man whose desertion scars Carmel, her sister, and their cancer-ridden mother. The Wren, the Wren brings to life three generations of women who contend with inheritances—of abandonment and of sustaining love that is "more than a strand of DNA, but a rope thrown from the past, a fat twisted rope, full of blood." In sharp prose studded with crystalline poetry, Anne Enright masterfully braids a family story of longing, betrayal, and hope.