Review: Last Days in Cleaver Square

Another great review – not mine…


A new book by Patrick McGrath is, I am assured, one of those writers who can pull apart our darkest fears and expose them to us without making us flee them, to paraphrase New Statesman.

I can see why his work is popular. In this story, an old man, Francis McNulty, is coming to terms with the realities of his 1970s life. His daughter is finally moving out. Gillian lives with him in Cleaver Square, the old house McNulty inherited from his father, but she is going to marry, and will move to live with her husband. And since her father is growing more irrational, foolish and drunk, she doesn’t think he should live there on his own. He should join her and her husband in their new, pleasant house in Lord North Street. Sounds like a plan.

Except, of course, it isn’t. McNulty has history in the place in…

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