'Father,' I said, feeling I might as well get it over while I had him in a good humour, 'I had it all arranged to kill my grandmother.'
Praised as Ireland's Chekhov, Frank O'Connor was a modern master of the short story. From an amateur brass band divided by partisanship to English soldiers who befriend their Irish captors, and from a child's comic confession to the end of a small-town friendship, these four humorous and tragic stories refract universal truths through the prism of 20th-century Ireland.
This book contains The Cornet-Player Who Betrayed Ireland, Guests of the Nation, A Story by Maupassant, and First Confession.
Frank O'Connor was the pseudonym of Michael O'Donovan who was born at Cork in 1903. Largely self-educated, he began to prepare a collected edition of his works at the age of twelve and later worked as a librarian, translator and journalist. When he was interned by the Free State Government he took the opportunity to learn several languages, but it was in Irish that he wrote a prize-winning study of Turgenev on his relase. He lived in Dublin and had an American wife, two sons and two daughters. He published Guests of the Nation, his first book, in 1931, and then followed over thirty volumes, including "My Oedipus Complex" and "First Confession", in addition to several short stories and plays. O'Connor published works of fiction and non-fiction continuously from the 1930s to the 1960s. He died in 1966.