Author of author of The Good Listener (1999), a life of Helen Bamber, fndr. of Medical Foundation for the Care of Victims of Torture; also A Game with Sharpened Knives (Weidenfeld & Nicolson 2005), 328pp., a study of Erwin Schrodinger at Kinkora Rd., Dublin.
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(See John Banville, A Quantum Leap to Clontarf, review in The Irish Times, 11 June 2005, Weekend) [infra]
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John Banville, A Quantum Leap to Clontarf, review in The Irish Times, 11 June 2005, Weekend: [...] Belton n paints a strong and persuasive portrait of Schrödinger, a man stranded in an alien environment, trying to juggle mind-numbing work with an impossible domestic life and the demands of a young mistress - Sinéad eventually bears his child; in fact, the real Schrödinger had two children with two separate Irish women - while labouring to interpret the wishes and intentions of his patron, the enigmatic and chilly de Valera. It would have been easy to draw portentously symbolic links between Schrödingers life and work, portraying the wife and mistresses in a macroscopic version of microscopic indeterminacy, for instance, but, Belton, displays an admirable restraint, contenting himself with mentions of an old Dublin custom of burying a cat alive in the walls of a building for luck and having a character point out that Irish could be the ideal language for quantum theory. You have to live with uncertainties. There are flashes of quiet wit, too, as when Schrödinger passes a wagon painted with the legend. You know you can rely on the Swastika Laundry. [...; &c.]. Concludes that the book does not fully succeed as a novel and that Belton might have been better advised to write Schrödingers story as non-fiction but commends the treatment of the affair with civil-servant Sinéad for tenderness and sympathy. (p.10; see full text.)
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