A cursed place: Small Things Like These, by Claire Keegan, reviewed

Claire Keegan’s tiny, cataclysmic novel takes us into the heart of small-town Ireland a few decades ago, creating a world that feels in certain respects dead and buried but whose legacy the country is still processing. This is Ireland before the boom and bust of the Celtic Tiger; before the insidious, everyday power of the Catholic church began to be eroded by the exposure of multiple abuse scandals; before its population voted overwhelmingly in favour of marriage equality and access to abortion. Yet in other respects the life it describes is familiar, and the Wexford town of New Ross, dominated by the River Barrow and governed by the rhythms of