REVIEW- Young Skins by Colin Barrett


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“So much of friendship is merely that: the saying nothing in place of something.”

Colin Barrett, Young Skins (2013)

Colin Barrett’s understanding of human interaction knows when to make itself known. The writer himself certainly knows how to pack a punch. Young Skins is his debut short story collection, consisting of seven separate stories set in the fictional Irish town Glanbeigh. It’s a place where the same families have lived (and failed to leave) for generations. A sense of static, of stagnation transcends the collection. These are individuals who have rarely travelled outside their own county, whose minds never wander further than the bustling hub of Dublin but who, despite their shared struggle to untangle themselves from the confines of their lives, are each wonderfully different. I had a particularly softness for Bat in Stand Your Skin because although he is physically intimidating, he has a tenderness that the more delicately-formed lack. Hiding away from the town on his roof, drinking cans of beer he felt real, and I felt sorry for him. Continue reading “REVIEW- Young Skins by Colin Barrett”