LYNCH, Patricia: The Bookshop on the Quay.
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LYNCH, Patricia. The Bookshop on the Quay. Illustrated by Peggy Fortnum. London:
Dent, 1956. First edition. pp. vi, 186. Green cloth, title in gilt on spine. A fine copy in priceclipped pictorial dust jacket. Scarce. See illustration on previous page.
Patricia Lynch (1898-1972), children's author, was born in Cork, her childhood memories began in her scholarly grandfather's tall, ramshackle house in the city, overlooking the Lee, where her lovely, enigmatic mother tells her tales of Irish legend and of the roving father she does not remember, and where she attends convent school, or plays truant, with dear Dinny, the washer-woman's small son, and gets lost, and is brought home by the tinkers. The family moved to London, she was educated there and in Scotland and Belgium. Her first book won the Tailteann silver medal in 1932. She wrote over fifty books which were translated into many European languages.
The story opens in the living-room of the Four Masters' Bookshop on Ormond Quay in Dublin on an autumn evening when the bookseller Eugene O'Clery, his wife Eilis, his schoolboy son Patrick, his nine-year-old daughter Bridgie, with her beloved cat Mog and her rag-doll Migeen, together with the O'Clery's faithful old servant the widow Flanagan, are seated for high tea, reading books propped against milk-jugs (the room is full of books) or staring out at the traffic by the Liffey, and at the people haunched against the cold east wind blowing in from Dublin bay.
Into the setting, with the picturesque figure of Dean Swift and the misty spire of St. Patrick's in the background, comes the young hero of the story, Shane Madden, an orphan who has run away from his home in the country in search of his dashing but unreliable hero, uncle Tom.
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