West Cork is a magical place. We Irish know this, as do the international celebrities who have been attracted by its beauty and security. The countryside has remained unspoiled and the people unaffected.
A Place Near Heaven is the story of a calendar year in West Cork, told in month-by-month observations of the natural world. Tranquil and beautifully written, it is a book in the finest tradition of writing on rural life and the natural world. In tracing the course of a full year, from January to December, Damien Enright captures the special atmosphere of the world in which he has chosen to live and which he loves with such obvious passion.
A paragraph at random: ‘Yesterday, after the weekend of half light, the weather changed again and it was a beautiful, flashing day, as sharp as Siberia but, down by the south-facing sea, as warm as Spain. Backed into a sunny corner, I again watched the kittiwakes dance over the whitecaps. Sprats, birds and seals were still at Coolbawn strand. Television wildlife, for all its joys, cannot compare with the reality.’
Damien Enright’s writing has drawn praise from Alice Taylor, Aidan Higgins, Tim Severin and Dick Warner, among others. A Place Near Heaven will establish him in the very first rank of Irish nature writers.