Reader’s Advisory: The Secret Scripture By Sebastian Barry

October 14, 2011

Sebastian Barry’s wonderful novel, The Secret Scripture, (nominated for the 2008 Man Booker Prize) was released with an audio version gorgeously narrated by Wanda McCaddon. We heartily recommend it as it’s one of the best audiobooks we’ve heard. The audio version is available on our Overdrive downloadable service as well as on CD in the Library.
Plot summary: Roseanne McNulty, once one of the most beautiful and beguiling girls in County Sligo, Ireland, is now an elderly patient at Roscommon Regional Mental Hospital. As her hundredth year draws near, she decides to record the events of her life, hiding the manuscript beneath the floorboards. Meanwhile, the hospital is preparing to close and is evaluating its patients to determine whether they can return to society. Dr. Grene, Roseanne’s caretaker, takes a special interest in her case. In his research, he discovers a document written by a local priest that tells a very different story of Roseanne’s life than what she recalls. As doctor and patient attempt to understand each other, they begin to uncover long-buried secrets about themselves.

Barry has written additional novels following the McNulty family members and has a recently published novel, On Canaan’s Side that has also enjoyed rave reviews and garnered a nomination for the 2011 Man Booker Prize.