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Liam O'Flaherty (1896–1984)

Author of The Informer

83+ Works 1,259 Members 19 Reviews 3 Favorited
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About the Author

Liam O'Flaherty (aka Liam Ó Flaithearta) was a significant Irish novelist and short story writer and a major figure in the Irish literary renaissance, born August 28, 1896, died September 7, 1984. At the age of 12, he went to Rockwell College. This was followed by enrollments at Holy Cross and show more University College, Dublin. In 1923, O'Flaherty published his first novel, Thy Neighbour's Wife, thought to be one of his best. In 1935, his novel The Informer (for which he had been awarded the 1925 James Tait Black Memorial Prize for fiction) was made into a film by John Ford. (Bowker Author Biography) show less
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Works by Liam O'Flaherty

The Informer (1925) 368 copies
Famine (1937) 229 copies
Insurrection (1951) 59 copies
Skerrett (1998) 50 copies
The Short Stories (1956) 42 copies
The Assassin (1928) 40 copies
Dúil (1953) 31 copies
The Black Soul (1928) 24 copies
Return of the Brute (1929) 22 copies
Thy Neighbour's Wife (1923) 21 copies
Mr. Gilhooley (1931) 20 copies
The Wilderness (1978) 20 copies
Liam O'Flaherty: the Collected Stories, Volume 1 (1999) — Author — 17 copies
Land (1946) 16 copies
Shame the Devil (1934) 15 copies
Selected Stories (1958) 14 copies
The House of Gold (1929) 13 copies
Spring Sowing (1926) 10 copies
The ecstasy of Angus (1931) 10 copies
The Puritan (2001) 9 copies
The Sniper (1923) 6 copies
I Went To Russia (1991) 6 copies
Two Years 5 copies
The Martyr (1933) 4 copies
Meistererzählungen. (1993) 4 copies
Short Stories: v. 1 (1970) 3 copies
Deseo (2012) 3 copies
O Delator 2 copies
Hambre 2 copies
The Fairy Goose (1927) 2 copies
Darkness (2014) 2 copies
The test of courage (1977) 2 copies
Silbervogel (2008) 2 copies
The Tent (1926) 2 copies
Irish Short Stories. Irische Kurzgeschichten. (1993) — Author — 2 copies
The assassin 1 copy
Kitlik (2022) 1 copy
El Delator 1 copy
The Sniper 1 copy
Les amants (2001) 1 copy
L'âme noire (2000) 1 copy
Lakota 1 copy
Tiergeschichten (1991) 1 copy
The Brute 1 copy

Associated Works

The Oxford Book of Short Stories (1981) — Contributor — 510 copies
75 Short Masterpieces: Stories from the World's Literature (1961) — Contributor — 295 copies
A Treasury of Short Stories (1947) — Contributor — 291 copies
A World of Great Stories (1947) 258 copies
The Penguin Book of Irish Fiction (1999) — Contributor — 149 copies
Great Irish Short Stories (1964) — Contributor — 142 copies
The Penguin Book of Irish Short Stories (1981) — Contributor — 129 copies
Classic Irish Short Stories (1957) 117 copies
Great Irish Detective Stories (1993) — Contributor — 89 copies
The Treasury of English Short Stories (1985) — Contributor — 84 copies
The Bedside Book of Famous British Stories (1940) — Contributor — 66 copies
Great Irish Short Stories (Dover Thrift Editions) (2005) — Contributor — 58 copies
Modern Irish Short Stories (1957) — Contributor — 42 copies
Great Irish Stories of the Supernatural (1992) — Contributor — 38 copies
Great Short Stories of the World (1965) — Contributor — 25 copies
Designs in Fiction (1968) — Contributor — 20 copies
Short Stories II (1961) — Contributor — 18 copies
Favorite Animal Stories (1987) — Contributor — 11 copies
Twelve Short Masterpieces (1986) — Contributor — 7 copies
The Literary Horse: Great Modern Stories About Horses (1995) — Contributor — 6 copies
Thirteen Short Stories (1968) — Contributor — 5 copies
The Best British Short Stories of 1923 (1923) — Contributor — 5 copies
The stars the world and the women (1930) — Foreword — 4 copies
The Furnival book of short stories (1932) — Contributor — 3 copies
Tredive mesterfortællinger — Author, some editions — 3 copies
American Aphrodite (Volume One, Number Two) (1951) — Contributor — 2 copies
American Aphrodite (Volume Three, Number Eleven) (1953) — Contributor — 2 copies
Charles' Wain. A Miscellany Of Short Stories (1933) — Contributor — 1 copy


Common Knowledge



Folio Archives 342: The Informer by Liam O’Flaherty 1961 in Folio Society Devotees (October 2023)


A page turner. The structure flows seamlessly from the victim to the informer and then back and forth from informer to Republican punisher. The desperate seedy town, the interior thought process of both characters is wonderfully woven. Quite a good read.
“He felt moved by an uncontrollable impulse. All his actions had completed themselves before his mind was aware of them. His mind was struggling along aimlessly in pursuit of his actions, impotently deprecating them and whispering warnings. But it was powerless.” 46… (more)
BookyMaven | 5 other reviews | Dec 6, 2023 |
This short story collection was published in 1926. The stories are almost all "naturalist" (I don't know if that's a real term) in style. Some of the stories depict small town/rural Irish life of the era, and some actually see the world through the eyes of animals: a cow in a fever over the loss of her calf, a young seagull learning to fly, a rabbit being chased by a young boy and his hunting dog. The human-centric stories show us events like a humorous hoax perpetrated by one villager over his neighbors over a so-called treasure, group of villagers waiting anxiously on shore, hoping against hope that their friends, sons, husbands will return from the days' fishing expedition despite a fierce, unexpected storm that has suddenly blown their way, snipers on opposite roofs--and opposite sides--during the 1916 Easter Uprising. The two best stories are the collection's first and last. The opening title story shows us the first day of married life of a young farming couple. Clearly in love and exulting on their strength and energy for the day's tasks, the day passes wonderfully. And yet we are clued into the lifetime's worth of repetition and labor awaiting the two. The final story, "Going Into Exile," brings us the moving tale of a loving farming family whose two oldest children are about to depart, probably forever, for America. For the most part beautifully and simply written, in this collection O'Flaherty has provided us a vivid, humorous and affection (if occasionally melancholy) picture of life in rural Ireland during the early 20th century.… (more)
rocketjk | Apr 24, 2023 |
ritaer | 1 other review | Apr 29, 2021 |
In 1920s Dublin, among the revolutionaries fighting for the Communist cause, the ultimate sin is to be an informer. Gypo Nolan knows this, but when there’s a £20 reward for information relating to his former friend Frankie and he can’t even afford a bed in the doss house, survival takes precedence over this principle. From this act, others follow: Nolan’s pursuit by the forces in the revolutionary party, his own guilt over informing on his friend, and the living conditions of the down-and-out in Dublin.

This was certainly a fast-paced book and full of slap-bang action pieces. The atmosphere of paranoia is well done too, and the squalor of the living conditions is captured somewhat vividly. And the scene in the fish and chip shop made me hungry! However, the descriptions for some of the characters, particularly the women and Nolan himself, felt patronizing (referring to Nolan as an animal or a brute rather than a human being), and Gallagher is a self-absorbed, sociopathic creep who receives way too much air time. So it’s not a book that I plan to reread.
… (more)
rabbitprincess | 5 other reviews | Nov 29, 2020 |



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