‘They hear a noise that initially they take for seagulls screaming…’

‘Now Kirby tells their tale at greater length in The Optician of Lampedusa. Though a small book, just 120 pages between its hard sea-blue covers, this is no extended exercise in reportage. Instead, Kirby tells it as a moral tale, following events through the eyes of the fastidiously ordinary optician never named in the text and thereby transformed into an everyman.’

‘In the days before the rescue, he watches at a distance as migrants arrive on his island, staying briefly before being transferred to the mainland. They encroach on his horizon only in that they deter the summer visitors on whom the island’s economy depends. They are problems, not human beings.’

Read more in The Guardian’s review of Emma Jane Kirby’s The Optician of Lampedusa here: https://www.theguardian.com/books/2016/oct/09/optician-of-lampedusa-emma-jane-kirby-review

Book your place at our free event here: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/cardiff-booktalk-the-optician-of-lampedusa-by-emma-jane-kirby-registration-169502190615

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