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, September 17, 2005

Read Ireland

Read Ireland Book News – Issue 320 ---------------------------------- Sinn Fein: A Century of Struggle introduced by Gerry Adams (Large Format Paperback; 25.00 Euro / 30.00 USD / 20.00 UK; 250 pages, with black-and-white illustrations throughout) This book marks the centenary of Sinn Féin. Just published it is a unique record of 100 years of struggle. This book tells the story of the Sinn Féin century in the words of Republicans themselves over the ten decades since the organisation was established. Lavishly illustrated, the book is one of the centrepieces of Sinn Féin’s centenary programme. Introduced by Sinn Féin President Gerry Adams, the book traces the political history of Ireland from 1905 to 2005. It moves from the founding of Sinn Féin to the 1916 Easter Rising, the Black and Tan War, the Partition of Ireland and the Civil War. It speaks with the voice of Republicans in the subsequent years of what James Connolly rightly predicted would be the ‘Carnival of Reaction’ North and South. It gives an insight in the Border Campaign of the 1950s. It records the struggle of Republicans through the Civil Rights Movement, the collapse of Unionist one-party rule, internment, Bloody Sunday and the long and tragic war. It reflects popular resistance to British rule, the heroism of prisoners, culminating in the hunger strikes, and the emergence of Sinn Féin as a strong all-Ireland political party - despite all the efforts of its opponents. Finally it brings us to the peace process and looks forward to the Ireland of Equals now being built by Sinn Féin. ------------------------------------- Baptised in Blood: The Formation of the Cork Brigade of the Irish Volunteers 1913-1916 by Gerry White and Brendan O’Shea (Large Format Paperback; 15.00 Euro / 18.00 USD / 10.00 UK; 128 pages, with photos and illustrations throughout) The euphoria that surrounded the formation of the Irish Volunteers in Dublin in 1913 captured the imagination of the country and a series of similar meetings were organised for other locations throughout Ireland. In Cork a public meeting took place in City Hall on Sunday evening, 14 December 1913. After a very contentious meeting over 500 men enlisted in the new organisation and were constituted as 'The Cork City Corps' of the Irish Volunteers. The fragile unity achieved within the ranks of this countrywide Volunteer movement was shattered by the outbreak of the First World War. Thousands of their number set off to serve with great distinction in the tenth and sixteenth divisions of the British army. The more militant minority, of whom initially there remained only 12,000, refused to follow suit, and dominated by the IRB, they retained the title of 'Irish Volunteers' (Oglaig na hEireann), and set about the daunting task of rebuilding an entire organisation. ------------------------------------ Ireland and the European Union: Nice, Enlargement and the Future of Europe edited by Michael Holmes (Large Format Paperback; 22.00 Euro / 28.00 USD / 15.00 UK; 206 pages) This book analyses Ireland's relationship with the European Union in the wake of Ireland's shock "No" vote to the Treaty of Nice and the major changes in the EU since enlargement; It is the first book to examine the "No" vote in detail, and to look at Ireland's engagement with the issues of enlargement and the negotiation of the draft constitution; Leading academics from Ireland and the UK have combined to provide a thought-provoking book which will be invaluable to anyone interested in contemporary Irish politics and economics, particularly for those interested in the issues of enlargement, the debate about the future of Europe and the relationship between the Union and its member states; It is the first book to analyse the Nice referendums in detail, with chapters exploring opposition to European integration in Ireland and the patterns of public opinion on integration; The book provides an overall assessment of the relationship between Ireland and the European Union ----------------------------------- House of Memories by Alice Taylor (Large Format Paperback; 15.00 Euro / 18.00 USD / 10.00 UK; 280 pages) A novel of rural Ireland in the early 1960s, continuing the story of two neighbouring farms and their feuding families begun in Alice Taylor's earlier works. Following his brutish father's unlamented death, young Danny Conway strives to rescue the family farm from ruin, finding help in an unexpected source. Other challenges face the local community, which already has little to offer young people and now it finds that it is threatened with the loss of its school. The new novel from the bestselling author of The Woman of the House A story of love for the land and of the passions and jealousies it can inspire. A moving story, too, of bereavement and grief. No one knows the warp and weft of country life as Alice Taylor does, and she has a unique ability to capture its rhythms and cadences. Following his brutish father's unlamented death, young Danny Conway strives to rescue the family farm from ruin; when all seems hopeless, help comes from the most unexpected quarter. ------------------------------------- Booking Passage: We Irish & Americans by Thomas Lynch (Hardback; 19.00 Euro / 24.00 USD / 13.00 UK; 300 pages) In February of 1970, Thomas Lynch, aged twenty-one, bought a one-way ticket to Ireland. He landed in the townland of Moveen, at the edge of the ocean in West Clare, outside the thatched cottage that his great-grandfather - another Thomas Lynch - had left late in the nineteenth century with a one-way ticket to America. Tommy and Nora Lynch, his elderly, unmarried, distant cousins welcomed the young American 'home'. In the words of the author, 'it changed my life'. He inherited the 'home place' when Nora died in 1992. In the three decades since that first landing and in dozens of return trips to Moveen, Lynch learned to look for the larger world inside the small one, the planet in the local parish; to find, as Montaigne wrote, 'the whole of Man's estate' in every man. Lynch's poems and essays, widely published around the world, have made known the debt he owes to Ireland and the Irish. Booking Passage is part travelogue, part cultural study, part memoir and elegy, part guidebook for what Lynch calls 'fellow pilgrims' working their way through their own and the larger histories. ------------------------------------- County Donegal Railways Companion by Roger Crombleholme (Large Format Paperback; 23.00 Euro / 29.00 USD / 16.00 UK; 112 pages, with black-and-white illustrations throughout) An illustrated history with scale drawings of locomotives, railcars and wagons featured on one of Irelands most popular narrow gauge railways. A book for the railway modeller and railway historian alike. ---------------- Available Again: ---------------- Michael Collins: A Biography by Tim Pat Coogan (Paperback; 20.00 Euro / 26.00 USD / 13.00 UK; 510 pages, with black-and-white photo insert) When the Irish nationalist Michael Collins signed the Anglo-Irish Treaty in December 1921, he observed to Lord Birkenhead that he may have signed his own death warrant. In August 1922 that prophecy came true when Collins was ambushed, shot and killed by a compatriot, but his vision and legacy lived on. This biography presents the life of a man whose idealistic vigour and determination were matched by his political realism and organizational abilities. The author's previous books include "Ireland Since the Rising", "On the Blanket" and "The IRA". ---------------------------------- The Day Michael Collins was Shot by Meda Ryan (Paperback; 10.00 Euro / 13.00 USD / 7.00 UK; 215 pages) Solves the mystery surrounding the ambush and killing of Michael Collins. The author Meda Ryan drawing on eye-witness accounts never before published, painstakingly reconstructs, in minute-by-minute detail, the last four days of Michael Collins's life and follows, mile by mile, his fatal journey through his home county of Cork. ------------------------------------- Concise History of Ireland by Sean Duffy (Large Format Paperback; 17.00 Euro / 22.50 USD / 12.00 UK; 250 pages, with full colour photos, maps and illustrations throughout) This attractive one-volume survey tells the story of Ireland from earliest times to the present. The text is complemented by 200 illustrations, including maps, photographs and diagrams. Sean Duffy, the general editor of the bestselling Atlas of Irish History , has written a text of exceptional clarity. Duffy stresses the enduring themes of his story: the long cultural continuity; the central importance of Ireland's relationships with Britain and mainland Europe; and the intractability of the ethnic and national divisions in modern Ulster. As a specialist in medieval Irish history, he gives the earlier period its due treatment - unlike most such surveys - thus introducing these recurring themes at an early stage. ----------------- New in Paperback ----------------- Maeve Brennan: Wit, Style and Tragedy: An Irish Writer in New York by Angela Bourke (10.00 Euro / 13.00 USD / 7.00 UK; 330 pages) The first book about Maeve Brennan, the recently rediscovered New Yorker writer from Ireland, who wrote like an angel, and looked like a fashion model, but became homeless in Manhattan in the 1970s and died forgotten in 1993. Born in Dublin in 1917 to politically active parents, Maeve Brennan's childhood in Ireland was moulded by the cultural ideologies of nationalism and lit by the creative energy of the Abbey and Gate theatres. She was seventeen when her father was appointed to the Irish Legation in Washington DC, where he was Irish Minister throughout World War II. Maeve wrote fashion copy at Harper's Bazaar until 1949, when William Shawn invited her to join The New Yorker. Tiny, impeccably groomed, and devastatingly witty, in William Maxwell's words, 'to be around her was to see style being invented'. Her richly textured fiction criticism and 'Talk of the Town' pieces, published in the 1950s and '60s, during The New Yorker's most influential period, offer unsparing portraits of the Ireland she had left and the America she inhabited. As this richly researched and wide-ranging book makes clear, Maeve Brennan's effect on the people who met her, her eye for human behaviour, clothing and domestic settings, her memory of home and her courageous life as a woman alone in metropolitan America make her an icon of the twentieth century. ------------------------------------ Highlights from the Previous Issue: ------------------------------------ An Irish History of Civilization: Volume One by Don Akenson (Hardback; 35.00 Euro / 42.00 USD / 25.00 UK; 826 pages) St Patrick catching sight of Ireland for the first time as he is taken there as a prisoner...Joyce and Yeats eating sticky buns in a Dublin cafe...There has never before been an Irish history book remotely like this one, composed as a vast mosaic of incidents, encounters and vignettes. It is not so much a 'history of Irish civilization' as an 'Irish history of civilization'. In telling a wide range of stories about the Irish everywhere this historical-fictional account of the Irish peoples around the globe from the time of Christ to 1969 opens up the really big issues - the relationship between the minute particulars and the larger patterns which gradually become apparent. The stories themselves are by turns funny, acerbic, ironic, score-settling - never quite what they seem at face value. They are also deeply informed by the author's vast knowledge of Ireland, its history and its diaspora. For once the hyperbole is true - after this book, Irish history will never be the same again. ------------------------------------ The Squad and the Intelligence Operations of Michael Collins by T. Ryle Dwyer (Paperback; 13.00 Euro / 17.00 USD / 10.00 UK; 270 pages) In 1919, Michael Collins conceived of a scheme to knock out the eyes and ears of the British Administration at Dublin Castle by undermining and terrorising the police so that the British would react blindly and drive the Irish people into the arms of the Irish Republican Army. The Bureau of Military History interviewed those involved in this scheme in the early 1950s with the assurance that the material would not be published in their lifetimes. A few of the contributions were made available by the families of those involved, but the bulk of them have only recently been released. This the first book to make use of those interviews. It makes fascinating, almost unique reading, because they contain first-hand descriptions in which men speaking candidly of their involvement in killing selected people at close range. As a result it throws a considerable amount of new light on the activities of the Squad and the intelligence operations of Michael Collins. ---------------------------------- Dictionary of Munster Women Writers, 1800-2000 edited by Tina O’Toole (Hardback; 30.00 Euro / 36.00 USD / 24.00 UK; 325 pages) The subjects range from well-known figures like Kate O'Brien or Nuala Ni Dhomhnaill, to a host of forgotten or neglected writers, singers or storytellers, and some brought to public notice for the first time. The Dictionary interprets "writers" very broadly, and includes unpublished diaries, journals, and letters, together with plays, documentaries, film-scripts and journalism, cookery books and manuals, as well as fiction and poetry. Many of the Irish language entries relate to contributions to the folk and song traditions rather to more conventional forms of writing. The project has been devised, in part, as a feminist recovery of women's writing, especially over periods when the surrounding society and culture had a distinctly patriarchal character (and women, for example, often wrote under male pen-names or anonymously), but it also offers a rich source work for those interested in local or regional identities, and a wide range of literary issues and figures. In conjunction with (and profoundly influenced by) the Field-Day Anthology of Irish Writing: Irish Womens' Writing and Traditions, this Dictionary will stimulate further research and inquiry and be an indispensable source book for many decades to come. ----------------------------------- Dublin: A Cultural and Literary History by Siobhan Kilfeather (Paperback; 19.00 Euro / 27.00 USD / 13.00 UK; 300 pages) This book is a history of Dublin, with a remarkable feel for the way the past is embodied in bridges and alleyways, sculpture and slums. But in classical Dublin manner it also ambles and diverges, pausing to illuminate the reader about a whole range of subjects from duels to theatres, maternity hospitals to prisons, the Book of Kells to Bono, Politics, industry, painting, architecture, feminism, poetry, famine, armed insurrection: these are a mere handful of the topics explored in this extraordinarily rich account. Like all the finest surveys, it combines a deep affection for its subject with an astutely critical eye. There are a good many guides to contemporary Dublin, and a shelf-load of histories of the place; but to combine the two, as Kilfeather has done in the spirit of this series, is a rare achievement. -------------------------------- Celtic Angels by Donald McKinney (Trade Paperback; 17.00 Euro / 23.00 USD / 11.00 UK; 286 pages) Top Celtic expert reveals how to forge a long-term, life-changing relationship with your own Celtic angel. Angels have long been a source of protection, comfort, wisdom and joy, providing guidance and helping us to discover the connection between our day-to-day existence and our spiritual needs. For the ancient Celts, angels were a part of everyday life and were often thought of as a confidant, companion and counseller all in one. These powers of companionship, guidance and inspiration are needed now more than ever in our demanding modern world. In this illuminating guide, Donald McKinney reveals the secrets of the spiritual world inhabited by the Celtic angels, their role in the lives of the ancient Celts, and how to seek out and work with your personal angelic guide. Everyone's angel is waiting to help - with anything from day-to-day problems, to accessing your ancestors, to exploring your personal spiritual path through life. ------------------------------- The Transformation of Ireland 1900-2000 by Diarmaid Ferriter (Paperback; 20.00 Euro / 26.00 USD / 13.00 UK; 884 pages) In 1900 Ireland was a restless, impoverished, neglected corner of the British Empire. By 2000 it had become the 'Celtic Tiger'. How did this happen? And what of those who lived through it? In the first comprehensive account of Ireland in the twentieth century, Diarmaid Ferriter draws together the complex threads that make up Ireland's story- from the high drama of its politics, to the 'hidden pasts' drawn from memoirs and previously unused sources; from the bitter struggles over the North to religion, literature, family and football. ---------------------------------- An Atlas of Irish History by Ruth Dudley Edwards (Large Format Paperback; 23.00 Euro / 29.00 USD / 15.00 UK; 300 pages) The history of Ireland and its people is one of incredible richness and variety. Combining over 100 beautifully crafted maps, charts and graphs with a narrative packed with facts and information, An Atlas of Irish History provides coverage of the main political, military, economic, religious and social changes that have occurred in Ireland and among the Irish abroad over the past two millennia. Ruth Dudley Edwards uses the combination of thematic narrative and visual aids to examine and illustrate issues such as: the Viking invasions of Ireland the Irish in Britain pre- and post-famine agriculture population change twentieth-century political affiliations. This new third edition has been comprehensively revised and updated to include coverage of the many changes that have occurred in Ireland and among its people overseas. Taking into consideration the main issues that have developed since 1981, and adding a number of new maps and graphs, this new edition also includes an informative and detailed section on the troubles that have been a feature of Irish life since 1969. ------------------------------------ Thank you for your continued support. It is vital for the continuation of this service! I respectfully request that if you are considering ordering any of these books that you do so through Read Ireland. I very much appreciate your patronage. To order books from the Read Ireland Book Review – simply return the Newsletter by clicking your reply button. Please delete 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: or We have added a new feature to the Read Ireland website. It is a page listing ONLY the newest books added to or updated on the website. This new feature page will itself be superseded at least 3 times per month. It is the perfect way to keep abreast of what is happening in the world of Irish Interest publishing. Please visit often! If we can be of any further assistance, please do not hesitate to contact us. Thank you very much for your continued support and custom. Sincerely, Gregory Carr @ Read Ireland
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