I do have a fondness for stories set in Eighties Ireland. A reminder of a pretty idyllic childhood. This story opens with the visit of Pope John Paul II to Ireland in 1979. A vast gathering of Mammies and their various offspring in Phoenix Park looking for that Papal blessing. Now that there has been a Polish pope Bridget Doyle is just desperate for her family to produce the next one. Blessing her son’s bed sheets with Papal blessed holy water is bound to guarantee that happens.
Future Popes is Martin’s debut in novel form and this is a beautifully observed story of four siblings and their relationships as they grown up. From the arrival of the triplets under a veil of sadness to the disparate adults scattered around the globe.
It is a book that you need to pay attention to as the chapters do meander through the siblings timeline and it can be difficult to work out which period you are in if you are dipping in and out of this one. Do persevere though as it is a wonderful tale of family and the dreams and expectations that can make life within that unit a lot more challenging.
Supplied by Net Galley and Harper Collins UK in exchange for an honest review.
UK publication date: Aug 23 2018. 448 pages.