BookBrowse Reviews Midwinter Break by Bernard MacLaverty

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Midwinter Break

by Bernard MacLaverty

Midwinter Break by Bernard MacLaverty X
Midwinter Break by Bernard MacLaverty
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     Not Yet Rated
  • First Published:
    Aug 2017, 208 pages
    Paperback:
    Sep 2018, 208 pages

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Book Reviewed by:
Rebecca Foster

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In MacLaverty's quietly beautiful fifth novel, a retired couple faces up to past trauma and present incompatibility during a short vacation in Amsterdam.

Northern Ireland's Bernard MacLaverty is the author of five novels and multiple short story collections. The main characters of his new book, Midwinter Break, are Stella and Gerry Gilmore, an Irish couple who live in Scotland and are in perhaps their late sixties or early seventies. Stella, a former English teacher, has thrifty, precise habits and solves crossword puzzles to keep her mind sharp. In the years since he retired as an architect, Gerry, once thoughtful and enthusiastic, has started drinking to excess; it's now rare for him to be without a bottle of whiskey to hand.

This short novel opens on the night before Stella and Gerry set off for the Netherlands on a brief vacation, and ends in the airport on their way back home. The limited time span and settings – the couple's home in Glasgow plus various locations in Amsterdam, mostly interiors – are ...

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