The Hard Life: With an Introduction by Jamie O'Neill

Paperback
Two orphaned boys, Manus and Finbarr, descend into the house of the disputatious Mr. Collopy. This is a tale of growing up in the midst of eccentricity: of Mr. Collopy's mysterious humanitarian work on behalf of women; of his progressive-sounding (and often blasphemous) arguments with his priest, Father Fahrt. Manus quickly proves himself a master of business, teaching people by post to walk the tightrope in Edwardian Dublin. He soon dispatches Collopy on a trip to Rome, seeking relief from the unexpected effects of his eldest charge's attempts at pharmaceuticals. Finbarr, meanwhile, watches and waits, a young boy with only the foggiest notion of the world he is describing...