WHERE HAVE YOU BEEN? no. 4 in the Irish Times bestseller list


WHERE HAVE YOU BEEN?, a collection of short stories from critically acclaimed, prize-winning author Joseph O'Connor has reached no. 4 in the Irish Times bestseller list. In his first collection of stories in twenty years O'Connor tackles  themes that highlight the confusion of living and the complexity of relationships, while covering a breadth of time periods and vividly fascinating locations. His characters leap off of the page and walk the tight rope of comedy and melancholy; never leaning too far to one side.

WHERE HAVE YOU BEEN? is published by Harvill Secker and was published on 4 October.


'Written with assurance and tenderness…O'Connor's characters are never inarticulate; even when they want to hide their true feelings, words pour out. They throw off sentences as if by doing so they might throw a bridge over a gulf and reach understanding. This is exhilarating. Often, however, one senses that the characters are conducting soliloquies rather than seeking to communicate with another. This is Dickensian, in the true sense of that word…All the stories are good, but the novella is very good. It convinces from its first sentence…This is as persuasive as the opening of a Chekhov story…full of lovely, delicate perceptive stuff. Joseph O'Connor is in the tradition of masterly Irish writers of short fiction.' -- Allan Massie, Scostman.com

'Humour...obliquely provides a cover for confronting readers with the darkness of the soul. …an exhilarating array of sharp dialogue and biting one-liners .. his fiction charts the fragility of relationships, the cruelty of chance and circumstance throwing people together only to shatter their lives, the nightmare of distrust and guilt stirred by memory, and the stark fear of separation and being left alone in the stillness of the night.  Where Have You Been? is his first collection of short stories for 20 years and reasserts a mastery of the form.' -- Irish Independent