This site includes the postings from the Irish Aires email list. This includes a listing of Irish/Celtic events in the Houston area and other information that the Irish Aires radio program posts.

Saturday, February 19, 2005

02/19/05 - Read Ireland

To receive these postings via email, click HERE No Message is necessary. Back to Irish Aires Table of Contents Read Ireland Book News ---------------------- A History of Ulster by Jonathan Bardon (Trade Paperback; 25.00 Euro / 30.00 USD / 16.00 UK; 928 pages) Dynamic and volatile, Ulster is brought to life in this meticulously researched history spanning nine thousand years of the politics, culture and economy of the province – the early settlements; the Viking and Norman invasions; the plantations and the Penal Laws; the rise of the United Irishmen and Orangeism; the Act of Union; emigration and the Great Famine; the linen industry and shipbuilding; the Home Rule crisis and partition; the Second World War and the blitz; civil rights and the turmoil of the Troubles. Through a sensitive use of a wide range of sources – contemporary letters and diaries, journals and newspapers, official documents and maps – Jonathan Bardon, author of the acclaimed Belfast: An Illustrated History, captures the energy and the obstinacy of Ulster. Stunning in its scope and elegant in its presentation, this is an authoritative and consistently readable history of the region and its people. ------------------------------- The Atlantean Irish: Ireland’s Oriental and Maritime Heritage by Bob Quinn (Trade Paperback; 25.00 Euro / 30.00 USD / 20.00 UK; 272 pages, with full colour and black-and-white illustrations throughout) Irish identity is best understood from a maritime perspective. For eight millennia the island has been a haven for explorers, settlers, colonists, navigators, pirates and traders, absorbing goods and peoples from all points of the compass. The reduction of the islanders to the exclusive category 'Celtic' has persisted for three hundred years, and is here rejected as impossibly narrow. No classical author ever described Ireland's inhabitants as 'Celts', and neither did the Irish so describe themselves until recent times. The islanders' sea-girt culture has been crucially shaped by Middle Eastern as well as by European civilizations, by an Islamic heritage as well as a Christian one. The Irish language itself has antique roots extended over thousands of years' trading up and down the Atlantic seaways. Over the past twenty years Bob Quinn has traced archaeological, linguistic, religious and economic connections from Egypt to Arann, from Morocco to Newgrange, from Cairo and Compostela to Carraroe. Taking Conamara sean-nos singing and its Arabic equivalents, and a North African linguistic stratum under the Irish tongue, Quinn marshalls evidence from field archaeology, boat-types, manuscript illuminations, weaving patterns, mythology, literature, art and artefacts to support a challenging thesis that cites, among other recent studies of the Irish genome, new mitochondrial DNA analysis in the Atlantic zone from north Iberia to west Scandinavia. The Atlantean Irish is a sumptuously illustrated, exciting, intervention in Irish cultural history. Forcefully debated, and wholly persuasive, it opens up a past beyond Europe, linking Orient to Occident. What began as a personal quest-narrative becomes a category-dissolving intellectual adventure of universal significance. It is a book whose time has arrived. ---------------------------------- Donegal in Old Photographs by Sean Beattie (Trade Paperback; 18.00 Euro / 22.00 USD / 13.00 UK; 144 pages, with photos throughout) Sean Beattie has brought together nearly 200 pictures from the last 150 years, many never published before, to create a photographic portrait of the county of Donegal. From the streets of Donegal town itself to the county's beautiful islands, from schools to farms, from golf courses to bustling markets, from holidays on the beach to poignant images of emigrants aboard ship waiting to leave Ireland for a 'new life', this collection of pictures reveals all aspects of Donegal's life over the last century and a half. It includes images of Eamonn de Valera at Glencolmcille, a rare stereoscopic photograph of the children at Terryone National School in Inishowen and many other fascinating slices of the county's life. ------------------------------------- The Waking of Willie Ryan by John Broderick (Paperback; 12.50 Euro / 15.00 USD / 9.00 UK; 240 pages) Willie Ryan is an old man who arrives back in his home town in 'the great central plain of Ireland', having escaped from the insane asylum where he was wrongfully incarcerated, and unvisited, by his devout Catholic family for twenty-five years. The given reason for his commitment was an attack on his sister-in-law, Mary Ryan, wife of his brother Michael. The true reason: a homosexual affair with a hedonistic young man who introduced him to art, literature and music. When he returns to his family, Mary continues to insist on Willie's insanity. After all, didn't he refuse to go to Confession or to attend Mass during all his years in the asylum? Together with Father Mannix - who was complicit in 'putting away' Willie - she conspires to bring about Willie's reconciliation with the church. For Willie's enemies, nothing evil has happened as long as it is not seen to have happened. But through Willie's piercing vision, we see the truth - his brother Michael's grief and remorse; his nephew Chris's fear of freedom; and the perceptiveness of asylum nurse Halloran. When Willie knows he is about to die, he agrees to a private family Mass, setting the stage for a confrontation with Father Mannix - one which will pitch moral integrity against the 'petty bourgeois snobbishness, hypocrisies and pretensions' of the 'little grocer's republic' of 1950s Ireland. ----------------------------------- The Pilgrimmage by John Broderick (Paperback; 12.50 Euro / 15.00 USD / 9.00 UK; 190 pages) Julia Glynn is the very model of a 'prim and well-conducted' bourgeois Catholic wife, a regular Mass-goer and president of her local charitable society. Her crippled husband Michael is the richest man in town, held in awe by bankers and bishops alike. In his illness he is dutifully tended to by the household manservant Stephen Lydon and by his handsome young nephew Doctor Jim. As Michael's condition worsens, their friend Father Victor proposes a pilgrimage to Lourdes. When Julia begins receiving a series of obscene anonymous letters detailing her sexual infidelities with Jim, her suspicions fall on the 'sinister' Stephen. And what connection do Stephen and Michael have with the suicide of local boy Tommy Baggot, a well-known figure within Dublin's secretive homosexual community? Why does she find herself both attracted to and repelled by Stephen? As the day of departure to Lourdes approaches, John Broderick probes into the heart of an Irish small town that is 'as watchful as the jungle', stripping his characters of their 'respectable clothes' to reveal their true selves in all their selfishness and 'elemental sensuality'. The Pilgrimage's depiction of sexual need and the 'petty vices' of 1950s Ireland led to its banning by the Irish Censorship Board on its original publication in 1961. Under the title The Chameleons it sold over 100,000 copies in America. This re-issue restores Broderick to his rightful place alongside John McGahern and Brinsley MacNamara, taking a new generation of readers on a unique 'pilgrimage of the body' -------------------------------- Children of Eve by Deirdre Purcell (Trade Paperback; 16.50 Euro / 20.00 USD / 11.00 UK; 372 pages) Eve Moraghan broke one of the great taboos when she abandoned her children as toddlers. Now adults, Arabella, Willow and Rowan have heard nothing of their mother since the day she walked out the door, headed no one knows where. Why she went, they just don't know. But now, it seems, they're about to find out. Their mother's been in an accident, and she's sent word that she wants to see her children. Their first reaction is to tell her to forget it. She gave up on them - why should they jump when she says so? And yet somehow they each find themselves on that plane, making the journey that will tell them what their past was all about - and open new doors into the future. --------------------------------- Heaven Lies About Us by Eugene McCabe (Trade Paperback; 19.00 Euro / 24.00 USD / 12.00 UK; 310 pages) In these twelve stories, Eugene McCabe plumbs the soul of the Irish border counties, where confusion, divided loyalties, and heightened emotions are part of everyday life, whether that life is lived in the aftermath of 'the Great Hunger' or in the face of sectarian bitterness, suspicion and conflict. A master of arresting dialogue and intimate characterisation, celebrated as a major playwright and author of one of the most important Irish novels of the last fifty years, McCabe demonstrates his outstanding gift for short fiction in this revelatory and haunting collection. ------------------------------ The Dublin Review Number 18 Spring 2005 edited by Brendan Barrington (Paperback; 7.50 Euro / 10.00 USD / 5..00 UK; 110 pages) This issue contains: Two Visits to Kosovo by Molly McCloskey; Solus Rex: Fiction by Patrick Fitzgerald; Shylock’s Lament by Harry Clifton; ‘Foreignism’: A Philadelphia Diary by Vona Groarke; House of Hutchinson, House of Murphy by Rosita Boland; Barcelona, 1975 by Colm Toibin; How to eat a fir-tree and keep yr lips moist: fiction by Tom Mac Intyre; Labyrinth of the revolution by Justin Quinn. ------------------------------------------ Thank you for your support! It is important that if you are considering ordering any of these books that you do so through Read Ireland in order that the service and the newsletter continues! To order books from the Read Ireland Book Review you can send an email to the order department at: Please be sure to include your mailing address and credit card details. You can of course also post your order to: Read Ireland, 392 Clontarf Road, Clontarf, Dublin 3,Ireland. Telephone and Facsimile number is: +353-1-853-2063. Read Ireland Web Site Home Page: All Prices and Rates are in Euro (US Dollar and UK Sterling prices are guidelines based on current exchange rates.) Euro prices on books reviewed above are firm. Post + package is charged at cost. Back to Irish Aires Table of Contents To receive these postings via email, click HERE No Message is necessary.
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