Magazine May 28, 2018, Issue

A Master

(Stephen Hird)
Last Stories, by William Trevor (Viking, 224 pp., $26)

William Trevor (1928–2016) was a writer well known in England and his native Ireland, author of a dozen novels and many dozen short stories. I first encountered him unawares in the pages of The New Yorker (all subscribers read it for the cartoons, but some occasionally read more). The story described a group of young people going home from a Dublin club at closing time. The showiest guy beats up another, unsuspecting kid, not in their group, in order to impress the girl he is escorting. But the next day’s paper reveals that the victim, who had a weak heart,

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