Colum McCann (1965, Ireland/New York) is one of the greatest living, actually, check that, one of the greatest Irish writers of all time. His stories sometimes extremely poetic, sometimes they are sparse, caught between Joyce and Hemingway, but the common thread is empathy, the empathy we feel towards his characters. Do yourselves a favor and read his stories. And novels. The sooner the better. Sapienti sat.