Killoyle, An Irish Farce

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Book cover German translation book cover (paperback) Book cover (first edition) German translation book cover (hardback)

Roger Boylan's Killoyle, An Irish Farce, published by Dalkey Archive Press, and its sequel, The Great Pint-Pulling Olympiad, published by Grove Press, are a pair of satirical novels that keep alive the spirit of Jonathan Swift, James Joyce, Samuel Beckett, and Flann O'Brien.

 Milo Meet Milo Rogers -- a great headwaiter,
a not-so-great poet (full text of chapter 1 of Killoyle).
 Wolfetone Eavesdrop on Wolfetone's chat with his God
(from chapter 3 of Killoyle).
 Two Strokes   Read the story that grew into Killoyle.
 Deutsch  Find out about the German translations of Killoyle
and The Great Pint-Pulling Olympiad.
 The Great Pint-
 Pulling Olympiad  
Read a synopsis and sample chapter from
The Great Pint-Pulling Olympiad.
 Links Follow hyperlinks to related Web sites.
 Reviews Peruse excerpts from various book reviews.
 Interviews Read interviews and articles on Boylan.
 E-mail Send a message to Boylan.
 Buy Purchase Killoyle online or locate an independent
bookstore in your area that carries it.

Critical Praise

"Killoyle ranks among the most impressive novels written by an American in recent years." Harvey Pekar, Austin Chronicle

"This is a virtuoso performance, filled with truly funny turns of phrase and event." Publishers Weekly

"Comparisons to James Joyce will come inevitably. . . . Boylan proves himself capable of spinning a fabulous yarn, as colorful as it is tangled." The Minnesota Daily

"Pleasure awaits in this hilarious Irish farce, a first novel that captures the absurdly comic spirits of Joyce and Beckett in its depiction of an Emerald Isle town peopled by some most peculiar folk, indeed. Wallowing in such gloomy, traditional Irish concerns as religious angst and too much booze, Boylan's wacky tale is deftly fleshed out with dense footnotes addressed directly to the reader--a clever technique that, in the hands of this skillful writer, helps provide for heaps of hearty laughter amid all the tears. Highly recommended." The Library Journal (starred review)

"Boylan's debut succeeds as a work in which the telling is more important--and more beguiling--than the tale." Kirkus Reviews

"Killoyle, An Irish Farce is a wonderful book following in [the] Anglo-Irish literary tradition. And like its Swiftian and Tristram Shandy forefathers, its characters all appear to be running low on luck, but the book is written with such humor and sympathy that their lives are a joy to participate in . . . Buy this book and read it." Literary Society Review

"I was hooked . . . Boylan writes with wit and a keen eye for the ridiculous." The Irish Emigrant

"To the people of Dalkey Archive Press, Roger Boylan's Killoyle must have looked like the work of Flann O'Brien resurrected in a world long gone PoMo." The Recorder

"A fine first novel, continuing the Dalkey tradition of publishing both Irish humorists and sundry members of the literary avant-garde."  Cups: The Cafe Culture Magazine

"Roger Boylan brings a wholly Irish comic vision to his portrait of [the] small town in Killoyle."   Gazette.Net

"Killoyle is sure to please those enthralled by the tragicomic history of Ireland, as well as those with a bent for rivers of prose in the Joycean mode."  Dallas Morning News

"Boylan's first and very comic novel . . . relates the adventures of a host of ne'er-do-wells [whose] antics are simultaneously laughable and poignant . . . Much of the novel's humor is due to Boylan's unique tone, which gives equal weight to complex emotions and buffoonery . . . His lengthy, rollicking sentences are stories unto themselves, and he experiments with form, plot, voice and character until the last period." Austin American-Statesman

"Killoyle. . . reflects the literary tradition of James Joyce, Samuel Beckett, and Flann O'Brien. . . . the joy of the novel lies in the language. Boylan's style is rich in 'Irishisms' yet clever and original. All in all, Killoyle is a raucous romp of a read." Magill Book Reviews

 Send your comments or questions about Killoyle to Roger Boylan at

U.S.-born, with roots in Ireland and the New York area, Boylan attended university in Ireland and Scotland and lived and worked in those countries and in France and Switzerland before returning to New York in 1978 and, in 1993, moving to Texas, where he now lives with his wife and daughter. His short stories have appeared in various journals, including the Boston Review, the Austin American-Statesman, The Recorder, Scrivener, and The Literary Review. He's also written an number of reviews for the Boston Review New Fiction Forum. He is currently working on the third novel in the Killoyle trilogy, provisionally titled Killoyle Wine and Cheese.

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