"Astronomer's Wife" was published in 1936. It was featured in a collection titled The White Horses of Vienna and Other Stories. The collection established Boyle on the literary scene as a promising talent and was unanimously praised by critics. Readers praised Boyle for the subtle nuances included in her writing.
"Astronomer's Wife" features lighter themes than some of her other works in the collection, such as Death of a Man, which was published in the same year and comments on the growing threat of Naziism. Each story in the collection, however, packs emotional impact and resonance.
Often compared to James Joyce for his use of epiphanies in writing, critics still deemed Boyle's work original enough to leave its own mark on the literary world.