I Will Sing My Songs for You


Simon - christened Steven Kelly - is a successful musician and front man of Simon and the Heartbeats. A songwriter in need of a break, he rents a cottage in the rural Inishowen of Donegal County looking to reconnect with his art. There he meets Marie-Clare, who tends bar at the local pub and has little interest in the celebrity. Undaunted, Simon instigates what becomes a romantic relationship, climaxing during the storm which is destined to change their fate.


Mr. McGilloway tells a tale with a unique storyline. He obviously has a generous familiarity with Ireland, the music, and the people, which shows on the page. While the plot is interesting with flowery characters, the secondary characters quickly overshadow the main outline of this work of fiction. Though Simons choices and actions affect many, those details quickly eclipse those that should hold center stage. Marie-Clares voice is lost among the multiple points of view of the lesser important characters leaving the reader in confusion as to what, in particular, he or she should be rooting for the main character to achieve. 


Mr. McGilloways personal accomplishments come into play in his novel but his strengths lie elsewhere. Still, for the reader yearning for a taste of the real Ireland, they may find it here and enjoy the glimpse inside from that of a native eye.


Shaunna Gonzales