Troubles by JG Farrell
And while one half of Murdoch’s face remained smooth and solemn, the other half lit up with wrinkled glee.
“Can he make it?”
“Afraid not quite, old chap”
Within a few pages of each other, towards the end of the book, these two instances arise which seem to capture the whole so eloquently; a double-faced detective observing the scene of a crime (crime?, crimes?), and a lecherous maths genius finding unexpected delight in the company of a discarded exercise book.
Does one dream of an end still? Yet the ruins smoulder. Is it only the instances of bloodshed, the loss of life that remind most of us ‘the troubles’ is something a little more than a knotty theoretical problem that needs solving; that either side of the lines there are people trying to live their lives?