BOOK REVIEW / In Brief: The fallen by John Mackenna, Blackstaff pounds 6.95

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The Independent Culture
The milieu is Dublin and its environs, thus immediately evoking shades of Joyce. The title-story, which details the doomed love affair between a First World War soldier and his colleen back home, even goes so far as to deliberately echo 'The Dead'. But MacKenna is his own man. His characters often look back in cold old age on summery youth. Epiphanies are described in a spare style which manages to make even the simplest activities - cycling, swimming, gardening - seem sensuous. An impressive collection.