Review 1588: This Is Happiness

My first introduction to Niall Williams was his wonderful novel History of the Rain. That was so good that I confess to having found Four Letters of Love slightly disappointing, just because it wasn’t as good. This Is Happiness, however, is a gem of a novel.

As an old man, Noe Crowe recollects the summer when he was 17. He has been banished to the small village of Faha in West Clare County, because he left seminary school. While living with his grandparents, Ganga and Doady, he’s supposed to find his way back to God.

First, it stops raining, in a village where it always rains. Then Christie arrives to help install the electricity. Christie, we sense, is a charismatic individual with lots of stories to tell. He has come with a mission, and it’s not electricity. He has heard Annie Moonie lives in Faha, and he wants to apologize to her for leaving her at the altar 50 years before.

In the meantime, Noe, in a village studded with eccentric characters, finds he has fallen in love with Sophie Troy, the doctor’s youngest daughter, or is he in love with Sophie and Charlie Troy, or is it with Sophie, Charlie, and Ronnie, all three of the doctor’s daughters?

The novel starts out funny and charming and it just gets better. Hoorah for another fine book by Niall Williams.

Related Posts

History of the Rain

Four Letters of Love

Nightingale Wood

7 thoughts on “Review 1588: This Is Happiness

  1. Jane December 10, 2020 / 11:27 am

    I love Ireland and I love 17, so you had me hooked at the very beginning!

    • whatmeread December 10, 2020 / 11:32 am

      I do? Then also read History of the Rain by the same author.

      • Jane December 11, 2020 / 11:08 am

        Thank you, it’s on the list too!

  2. Christine December 10, 2020 / 11:38 am

    This sounds delightful! I’ve never heard of Niall Williams and will have to check him out.

  3. Izabel Brekilien December 11, 2020 / 2:52 am

    Maybe this would be a good read for the next Irish readathon.. Thanks for sharing 🙂

    • whatmeread December 11, 2020 / 10:46 am

      I think it’d be a good choice.

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