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But Come Ye Back

3.48 of 5 stars 3.48  ·  rating details  ·  61 ratings  ·  15 reviews
For thirty-some years, Lyle has made a life for his family working as an accountant. But when he retires, his Irish-born wife, Mary, wants to leave America and go home -- where the ocean is near and the butter has flavor.

Somewhat grudgingly, Lyle agrees, but during their years in Galway, they discover that the surprises of life are not over. Going home is more complicated
ebook, 288 pages
Published October 13th 2009 by HarperCollins e-books (first published December 23rd 2003)
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Ron Charles
The emerald moors of Ireland lie a long way from the wheat fields of Carbondale, Ill., where Beth Lordan teaches writing. But this masterful storyteller knows all about spanning distances that seem unfathomable. Her new novel, inspired by a sabbatical in Galway, records the persistence of affection between a man and woman who remain strikingly different over their 30-year marriage.

But Come Ye Back opens on the day Mary and Lyle move into their new, very old home. Lyle has retired recently, and M
Joan L
Why isn't Beth Lordan better known? I love her wise and elegant and layered stories, the way she so makes us want to know more about her characters, the way they are flawed and human and familiar, the way their lives are messy and hopeful and mysterious. Lordan's books should be added to all sorts of "Best of --- " lists.
Loved these short, simple stories, so ordinary you would wonder who would care but care I did. Poetic prose weaves simplistic thoughts and events into a beautiful tapestry of life.
Cathy Hall
Nov 12, 2007 Cathy Hall rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Old married couples
When I read my synopsis of this book, I remembered it clearly, which is saying quite a bit. It says I really liked this quiet, deeply-moving novel about Lyle and Mary Sullivan. So much so, that years later, the imagery of Ireland returns to me. The story of a husband who takes his wife for granted until the day he loses her and can no longer do so. The author brilliantly captures the essence of that adage, "you never appreciate what you have till it's gone."
I loved this gentle look at a marriage in the later stages of life. It was fun to read one chapter at a time, and see how each one told a whole story, but also, together, how they made up a book that was somehow greater than the sum of its parts. Very endearing, a bit sad at times. The descriptions of Ireland as seen by adults returning to it late in life were well crafted: I felt like I was there with Mary and Lyle!
Described as a novel in stories and that is so true. Each chapter is like a short story and the novel just grows from there. A love story of sort. But much more real. I found myself growing to love all the characters and hating to see it all come to an end.
Amanda Westmont
I started this as a research book for a novel I'm writing. I'm trying to find good examples of Irish accents in dialogue, but this book didn't seem to have any and I couldn't get into it for any other reason.
This was a beautiful book - the characters were well written and the situations they found themselves in were, although ordinary, still fascinating. A great love story, actually, several great love stories.
A lovely story set in Ireland about a couple (in their 60's who've come back to Ireland to live. It's told in stories, sort of like Olive Kittredge, except that Mary and Lyle are in every story.
Amazing portrayal of the complexity of long-term relationships. The characterization is subtle and absolutely authentic. I sunk deeply into this story and into its characters.
Oct 31, 2008 Heather rated it 1 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Heather by: book club
Shelves: fiction, 2007
Had it's redeeming qualities after the book club discussion but I didn't enjoy the book itself.
Marital relationships are complicated even after many years together.
I have nothing positive to say about this book.
Bronwen Stair
Aug 20, 2007 Bronwen Stair rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: a good family story
Shelves: fiction
Going back home is never what we expect it to be.
A little confusing to read
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