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Saturday, April 02, 2005

Read Ireland

To receive these postings via email, click HERE No Message is necessary. Back to Irish Aires Table of Contents ---- To celebrate the 300th Issue of Read Ireland Book News and also the release on the paperback edition of Protestant Boy by Geoffrey Beattie, an eloquently-written and enlightening memoir, Granta ( have generously offered Read Ireland 5 copies to GIVEAWAY to its customers. So the first 5 customers who request a copy will get one FREE – no other purchase necessary. Just send your full mailing address with your email request. Protestant Boy by Geoffrey Beattie (Paperback; 13.50 Euro / 17.00 USD / 9.00 UK; 246 pages) Geoffrey Beattie grew up in the notorious 'murder triangle' in North Belfast, where during thirty years of the Troubles more than six hundred people were killed. Many of his childhood friends ended up dead or in prison, while Beattie himself moved to England, at first to study and eventually to build a highly successful career as a psychologist. On a visit home to see his ailing mother, Beattie begins to explore his Ulster Protestant ancestry and to reflect on the unfashionable and little understood Protestant community. His search takes him to the trenches of the Somme, to the Plantation villages of Ulster; and to Drumcree for the Orange march. And it also takes him deeper into his mother's character: at the heart of the book is an extraordinarily vivid portrait of this opinonated, witty, exasperating Ulsterwoman. Protestant Boy is an honest, beautifully written book about the stories that families and cultures tell themselves, and about the silences that they leave behind. ---------------------------------- Read Ireland Book News - Issue 300 ---------------------------------- W.B.Yeats: A Life II The Arch-Poet by R.F. Foster (Trade Paperback; 25.00 Euro / 31.00 USD / 17.00 UK; 800 pages) The acclaimed first volume of this definitive biography of W. B. Yeats left him in his fiftieth year, at a crossroads in his life. The subsequent quarter-century surveyed in The Arch-Poet takes in his rediscovery of advanced nationalism and his struggle for an independent Irish culture, his continued pursuit of supernatural truths through occult experimentation, his extraordinary marriage, and a series of tumultuous love affairs. Throughout he was writing his greatest poems: 'The Fisherman' and 'The Wild Swans at Coole' in their stark simplicity; the magnificently complex sequences on the Troubles and Civil War; the Byzantium poems; and the radically compressed last work - some of it literally written on his deathbed. The drama of his life is mapped against the history of the Irish revolution and the new Irish state founded in 1922. Yeats's many political roles and his controversial involvement in a right-wing movement during the early 1930s are covered more closely than ever before, and his complex and passionate relationship with the developing history of his country remains a central theme. Throughout this book, the genesis, alteration, and presentation of his work (memoirs and polemic as well as poetry) is explored through his private and public life. The enormous and varied circle of Yeats's friends, lovers, family, collaborators, and antagonists inhabit and enrich a personal world of astounding energy, artistic commitment, and verve. Yeats constantly re-created himself and his work, believing that art was 'not the chief end of life but an accident in one's search for reality': a search which brought him again and again back to his governing preoccupations: sex and death. He also held that 'all knowledge is biography', a belief reflected in this study of one of the greatest lives of modern times. -------------------------------------- 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. --------------------------------- Munster’s Mountains: 30 Walking, Scrambling and Climbing Routes by Denis Lynch (Paperback; 15.00 Euro / 18.00 USD / 10.00 UK; 120 pages) The mountains of Munster stretch from Kerry to Waterford, through Limerick, Cork and Tipperary. For this guidebook the author explored gullies and ridges with a technical/semi-technical element, a level above hillwalking involving scrambling and rock climbing. While including well-known routes, he also describes alternatives, offering a sense of exploration and adventure. Illustrated with maps and photographs, this book offers a range of options for challenging days on the hills and mountains of Munster. ------------------------------------- Grace and Truth by Jennifer Johnson (Hardback; 22.50 Euro / 28.00 USD / 15.00 UK; 210 pages) Sally, an actress, has just returned from a long European tour to her house in Goatstown, and looks forward eagerly to seeing her husband, Charlie, again. When Charlie announces that he’s leaving her, Sally, devastated and furious, makes him pack his bags at once. But maybe, she wonders later, she really is too hard to live with? Weighed down by the unspoken secrets of two generations, and hoping for some glimmer of comfort, Sally turns to her grandfather, the frosty old Bishop she has never really known. Exercising breathtaking control, the author writes about a subject society would prefer to forget, and is able to make the reader laugh and gasp with horror in equal measure. This novel is an unforgettable, powerful and compassionate work from one of Ireland’s finest writers. ------------------------------------ The Real Chief: Liam Lynch by Meda Ryan (Paperback; 16.00 Euro / 19.00 USD / 11.00 UK; 220 pages) With the aid of Liam Lynch's personal letters, private documents and historical records, The Real Chief, traces the turbulent career of one of Ireland's greatest guerilla commanders from his birth in 1893 until his death twenty nine years later in the civil war when he ws killed in action on the Knockmeadlown mountains. ------------------------------------ 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. -------------------------------------- Limerick Boycott 1904: Anti-Semitism in Ireland by Dermot Keogh and Andrew McCarthy (Trade Paperback; 20.00 Euro / 25.00 USD / 15.00 UK; 161 pages) This book contains selected documents which indicate that even before 1904, concerns existed in official circles regarding alleged activities of Jewish traders – supposedly selling recycled tea and getting a lien on land and property. This prompted Dublin Castle to investigate the activities of the Jewish community in 1903. In January 1904, the Jewish community in Limerick experienced a backlash in the form of violent assaults, economic boycott and social ostracisation. Keogh and McCarthy explore why this happened, why these events in Limerick remained a localised event and the consequences for the Jewish community. --------------------------------------- Famine in Cork City by Michelle O’Mahony (Paperback; 17.00 Euro / 21.00 USD / 12.00 UK; 190 pages, with black-and-white photo insert) One hundred and sixty years ago Ireland’s Great Famine began. Within five years, some two and half million people had died. Thousands had fled to the hated workhouses, hoping desperately for some relief. This book sheds light on the horrific physical conditions of the inmates in one such workhouse, Cork Workhouse (now St. Finbarr’s Hospital), and explores the tragic effects of the famine as they unfolded in the city. ---------------------------------- From Civil Rights to Armalites: Derry and the Birth of the Irish Troubles 2nd edition by Niall O Dochartaigh (Paperback; 26.00 Euro / 33.00 USD / 19.00 UK; 333 pages) From Civil Rights to Armalites traces and analyses the escalation of conflict in Northern Ireland from the first civil rights marches to the verge of full-scale civil war in 1972, focusing on the city of Derry. It explains how a peaceful civil rights campaign gave way to increasing violence, how the IRA became a major political force and how the British army became a major party to the conflict. It provides the essential context for understanding the events of Bloody Sunday and a new chapter brings significant new material to the public debate around the Bloody Sunday Inquiry. ---------------------------------- New in Paperback This Week: A Dark Day on the Blaskets by Micheal O Dubhshlaine (Trade Paperback; 15.00 Euro / 18.00 USD / 10.00 UK; 255 pages) In the summer of 1909, Eibhlin Nic Niocaill arrived on the Dingle Peninsula in the extreme south-west of Ireland. One of the finest scholars in the new national movement, she had come from Dublin to study the West Kerry dialect of Irish. Here she explored the countryside and traveled to the Great Blaskeet, spending an intense, mystical month on the island, meeting the inhabitants, whose lifestyle had changed little in 200 years. This book is a fascinating insight into Blasket Island life, life on the mainland, and life in Dublin in the early part of the last century. ---------------------------------- Rebels by Peter De Rosa Paperback; 13.00 Euro / 15.50 USD / 8.50 UK; 535 pages Rebels tells the exciting story of Easter 1916, a key date in the history of Irish Republicanism. The IRA always claim their authority comes from the martyred heroes of 1916. This book will enable the reader to judge finally whether this claim is true or not. ------------------------- Highlights from Issue 299 ------------------------- Read Ireland Book News - Issue 299 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. --------------------------- Heroic Option: The Irish in the British Army by Desmond and Jean Brown (Hardback; 40.00 Euro / 47.00 USD / 25.00 UK; 330 pages, with photo insert) It is a curious paradox that, while for many centuries there has been deep antagonism between the British and the Irish, the latter have fought the former's wars with exemplary courage and tenacity. This has never been better demonstrated than when, as a result of the Irish regiments' superb service in the South African War (Boer War) at the end of the 19th Century, Queen Victoria ordered the formation of the Irish Guards in 1900 as a mark of the Nation's gratitude. Even after the trauma of Partition, Irishmen continued to serve in Irish regiments in large numbers and the tradition continued today. Indeed during the Second World War a very significant number of the most influential generals were of Irish extraction. ------------------------------ Nationalism and the Irish Party: Provincial Ireland 1910-1916 by Michael Wheatley (Hardback; 70.00 Euro / 85.00 USD / 50.00 UK; 295 pages) In this book, Michael Wheatley examines Irish politics in the last years of the Union, before war and uprising transformed Irish and British politics. Focusing particularly on the Irish Party, he provides a detailed, scholarly analysis and challenges the view that the party was doomed. ------------------------------ Conquering England: Ireland in Victorian London by Fintan Cullen and R.F. Foster (Trade Paperback; 20.00 Euro / 25.00 USD / 13.00 UK; 80 pages, with 50 colour and black-and-white images) Under the Union between Britain and Ireland in 1801, the two countries were engaged in a relationship that was quarrelsome, contentious and in many ways interdependent. Yet it also provided a wider arena for certain ambitions in literature, politics and the arts. Irish talent was exported to London in the nineteenth century; by the turn of the twentieth it was being imported back to an Ireland undergoing political radicalisation and a cultural renaissance. This book, which accompanies a National Portrait Gallery exhibition, explores the Irish presence in London during the Victorian period, focusing on prominent individuals including the writers Oscar Wilde, W.B. Yeats and G.B. Shaw; theatrical impresarios such as Bram Stoker; history painters such as Daniel Maclise; charismatic politicians such as Charles Stewart Parnell and colourful journalists such as T.P. O'Connor. Through these influential individuals, the changing perspectives on Ireland that developed during the second half of the nineteenth century are revealed. ------------------------------------- World War I: 1914-1918: Ireland’s Memorial Records (on CD-ROM) compiled by the Committee of the Irish National War Museum (CDROM; 100.00 Euro / 130.00 USD / 70.00 UK) The objective of this volumes is to preserve the names of over 49,000 Irishmen who lost their lives fighting in the Great War, World War I, 1914-1918. The collection was compiled by The Committee of the Irish National War Memorial under the direction of the Earl of Ypres. It is the most complete record known to exist and was published in 1923. This record is unique in many ways. Firstly, not only does it record the names of the dead, it also records their rank, regiment, date of death and regimental number. In most cases the soldier’s county or place of birth and the place and date of death are recorded. All 32 counties in Ireland lost men in the Great War. More than 5,000 from Antrim, 4,800 from Dublin and 3,000 from Cork alone. Indeed it is likely that every village, town and city in Ireland at the time was touched in some way by the loss. ----------------------------------- At Arm’s Length: Aristocrats in the Republic of Ireland by Anne Chambers (Hardback; 20.00 Euro / 26.00 USD / 14.00 UK; 210 pages) The integration of the aristocratic order into the political and social structures of the Republic of Ireland has taken longer than elsewhere. Since Irish independence from Britain a gulf existed between them and the rest of Irish society that was more pronounced and fundamental than the mere social divide usually found between aristocrat and commoner in other countries. In Ireland the 'Us and Them' mentality that existed between Irish aristocrats and the rest of the population has more to do with history and politics than with social status, privilege or material wealth. -------------------------------------- Thank you for your support! I respectfully reequest 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 - simply return the Newsletter by clicking your reply button, deleting the books you do not want and leaving the books you want to order. Alternatively, 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 and slightly discounted from the prices listed on the website. 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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