Day three and my choice is by an Irish author (in my opinion some of the best writers come out of Ireland) Niall Williams. His novel “HISTORY OF THE RAIN” is a bitter sweet story set in County Clare, where the author lives. It was long-listed for the BOOKER PRIZE in 2014.


We are our stories. We tell them to stay alive or keep alive those who only live now in the telling. In Faha, County Clare, everyone is a long story…
Bedbound in her attic room beneath the falling rain, in the margin between this world and the next, Plain Ruth Swain is in search of her father. To find him, enfolded in the mystery of ancestors, Ruthie must first trace the jutting jaw lines, narrow faces and gleamy skin of the Swains from the restless Reverend Swain, her great-grandfather, to grandfather Abraham, to her father, Virgil – via pole-vaulting, leaping salmon, poetry and the three thousand, nine hundred and fifty eight books piled high beneath the two skylights in her room, beneath the rain.
The stories – of her golden twin brother Aeney, their closeness even as he slips away; of their dogged pursuit of the Swains’ Impossible Standard and forever falling just short; of the wild, rain-sodden history of fourteen acres of the worst farming land in Ireland – pour forth in Ruthie’s still, small, strong, hopeful voice. A celebration of books, love and the healing power of the imagination, this is an exquisite, funny, moving novel in which every sentence sings.

And this is my Amazon review:

A mesmerising story, written from the point of view of young girl who is confined to her bed. A kaleidoscope of Ireland’s society and recent history, a mixture of myth, legend and literary culture. The girl is a reader and the story is punctuated with references to characters and scenes from novels that she has read. Charming, funny and hard to put down.


Joan Fallon is a writer and novelist living in Spain.