Thirty-four year old Luke O’Brien has left the city to live a quiet, bookish life on the River Sullane in County Waterford. Alone in his big house, he longs for a return to his family’s heyday and turns to books—especially Ulysses—for solace and sublimation. One morning a young woman arrives at his door and enters his life, with profound consequences.
A novel that pays glorious homage to Joyce, The River Capture tells of a man’s phenomenal descent into near madness when love is lost. It is about humanity’s capacity for good and evil and what happens when Nature is thwarted. More than anything, it is a book about the life of the mind and the redemptive powers of art.
Mary Costello’s short story collection The China Factory was nominated for the Guardian First Book Award. Her first novel, Academy Street, was shortlisted for the International Dublin Literary Award, the Costa First Novel Prize and the EU Prize for Literature. It won the Irish Novel of the Year Award and the overall Irish Book of the Year in 2014, and has been translated into several languages. The River Capture is her second novel.