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"Surprising and Satisfying Conclusion"
I have read all three of Trevor Summons' books having just completed "Transposition". "Requital" (a wonderful synonym for retaliation) flowed smoothly between past and present to its surprising and satisfying conclusion. In "McConnells", Trevor provides us unique insight to the history of Ireland and its people. "Transposition" is the story of two boys orphaned during WW II with another most satisfying finish. They are all different and excellent in every way. All three added to my knowledge of the Irish and English people from the earliest times; through the transportation to Australia, and up to the days during and after WW II. Count me among those anxiously awaiting his next book.
Alan Walters (Escondido, Ca.)
“An Interestingly, Entertaining, Informative Read”
If you enjoy reading the style of the books by Wilbur Smith and find them difficult to put down, I would recommend this book by a new author, Trevor Summons.
No, it is not about Africa, it is set around the Irish problems of 200 years ago and the problems of the present. It is written in an interesting flip flop manner which relates the problems of olden times and the present.
It is a very interesting read which I recommend to anyone who enjoys a good read with an interesting twist. I am looking forward eagerly to Trevor Summons next book which, I hope, will not be long coming.
What better recommendation can I make?
Tony Stracey (Empuriabrava, Spain) November 15, 2003
“A Worthwhile Read”
An engaging story of multigenerational Irish players reminiscent of tales by Leon Uris. Taking place in modern times with effective flashbacks to the 1700-1800's, Summons weaves the storyline “from the inside” of the Irish underground experience. Most definitely a worthwhile read.
Kevin McNally (Los Angeles, CA), November 10, 2003
“A First Class First”
A book you could easily pass by if only looking at the front cover and deciding it's not for you. By reading the back cover, you realize that this is not a simple story based on either historic Ireland or Northern Ireland in the recent past. However, until you read the book, you will not appreciate how historic facts and recent events have been expertly blended into two separate, alternating stories. Both plots are informative, exciting and emotive in their own rights.
One of the most readable and un-put-down-able books I have read. It appears that this is a first from Trevor Summons. I cannot wait for the next one!
David Young (Watford, England), May 26, 2003
1992, Belfast. Meet Mitch O'Doule, full colonel and member of the war council, tired of the violence of the IRA, violence that has escalated now that the “younger element” is involved. Before there were attacks on infrastructures and property; now there are plans for attacks against innocent people. Involved since age 15, Mitch wants out after 30 years. He has money, but no wife or family. But how to disappear? How to survive being a traitor?
1786. Meet Paddy O'Doule, Mitch's great-great-great-grandfather who has to leave his small village, wife and four children, because his brother wants to divide their farm and go it alone. Paddy has to go to see the agent in Belfast, a day's journey away. When in Belfast, the O'Doule thirst takes over, and he loses all his money. Worse yet, he is followed and “pressed” into the royal navy. Paddy's life will one day come to affect Mitch's life.
Chapters alternate between Mitch and Paddy, and both men in this adventure story deal with culture conflicts and identity and other crises. The reader will discover what it might be like to struggle against violence while one's life work is intertwined with it. He will also discover what it must have been like for the sailors in the new land, “Down Under.” Plot twists will keep you engaged as Chief Gunner Sande, who is sheer evil, keeps appearing in Paddy's life. Will Mitch find love with Margitte, a “broker of sorts who gets interested parties together”? This is a first novel by author, Trevor Summons, with, I hope, many more to follow.
Mary H. Thompson (Canoga Park, Ca United States), August 31, 2001
“A Good Read-Time Well Spent”
First time author Trevor Summons has come up with a thoroughly enjoyable book. A story with in a story. Using fictional characters in a historical venue. Mr Summons is obviously very familiar with the histories of both Ireland and England. Taking the lives of two men, related but separated over 200yrs. The author clearly shows how unsuspecting and uneducated men were literally kidnapped into service on the Kings ships and the hardships they endured. Entwined in this history we see a high ranking IRA officer, so tired of the “cause” wanting to break free and start a new life away from Ireland. Mr Summons does and excellent job in character development and is very detailed in his descriptions. He clearly allows you to visualize his characters. I found Requital to be both historical and timely. I would certainly recommend this book. It will enlighten you and entertain you. Mr Summons' abilities warrant future works.
Mike Covolo (Omaha, NE USA), August 2, 2000
“A Book Worthy of One's Time”
Requital offers to the reader all the attributes of a well-written book. The book tells the stories of two men of the O'Doule family of Ireland with some 200 years in separation of the times they live(d) in. Paddy O'Doule's story is a genuine tragedy of a life lost under the English persecution of his people over 200 years ago. In contrast, his future relative Mitch O'Doule's story is that of a man desperate to escape from a failed life centered on Irish hatred for the English, no small feat to someone so entrenched in the IRA's hierarchy as he is.
What is truly refreshing about the book is the manner in which the struggles of the protagonists are brought to the reader on a more personal level, and thusly, are far more engaging. In regards to Mitch's story, the book is not a shallow rendition of terrorist practices as one finds in books like Patriot Games or Clear and Present Danger, but actually a story of conflict told on a rather intimate level. By that same token, Paddy's story centers on the expertly detailed continuous mistreatment he receives at the hands of English authority, and his ultimate descent into having a pathological hatred for that same English authority. What I found most admirable about the work were the things that it avoided having. The romantic subplot was free from being contrived or sappy in nature. Unlike the aforementioned works of Clancy, Requital is not plagued with technical or historical inaccuracies. The author is obviously well-educated in the historical period that Paddy O'Doule existed in, and his thoroughness in articulating the day-to-day life of Mitch O'Doule is both engrossing and by no doubt realistic. In addition, I was pleased with how the author's original idea and technique of telling two related stories kept from being a rubbishy gimmick that one might have thought it was (as I did) when reading the author's description of his own work. I highly recommend this book to anyone seeking something more than the incomplete and hollow works so often found at their bookstore. PS: In regards to the accuracy for which I have praised this book, I invite anyone to find the one small (and rather irrelevant) historical misinformation that exists within it. Enjoy!
SE CHAZ@aol.com (Genoa, Italy), June 27, 2000
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