Tag Archives: Books

“The Classic book of American short stories” published by Oxford and with an introduction by Douglas Grant, 1990.

The fourteen short stories in Oxford’s 1990 collection highlight the diversity of life in the burgeoning United States. It is not a pretty picture. The stories contained within are loosely chronological from mid nineteenth to twentieth century: Nathaniel Hawthorne “My … Continue reading

Aside | Posted on by | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Learning from our past: how the tale of “CuChulainn” can show us some ways forward…

Introduction:   I am fascinated by what values my Irish ancestors saw as worthy of mythologizing. After examining these qualities, I believe our past may offer an insight into how we might behave in the future. Have we lost touch with some … Continue reading

Aside | Posted on by | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Review: “More than this” by Patrick Ness

Ness has written a bleak, coming-of-age science fiction thriller where the protagonists’ emotions swirl around in a dizzying eddy of uneasy teenage sensations. Strange feelings jolt around while an awkward journey of self-discovery unfolds. “More than this” is set in … Continue reading

Aside | Posted on by | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Review: “Judging Dev” by Diarmaid Ferriter

From the early 1990’s, De Valera’s reputation began to take such a relentless battering, it seemed that a complete downgrading of his status in Irish history had taken place. Did it begin with Tim Pat Coogan’s 1993 biography? Possibly.  His … Continue reading

Posted in Biography, Book review, Books, Democracy, Diarmaid Ferriter, Eamon De Valera | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Review: Ernest Hemingway: “For whom the bell tolls”

I must confess that I am not an unbiased reader of Hemingway as he is one of my favourite authors. His direct and distinctly lyrical style, even when documenting the violent and harsh side of life, is inspired. Frequently whilst … Continue reading

Posted in Book review, Ernest Hemingway, For whom the bell tolls | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Review: Fyodor Dostoevsky “The Gambler”

Dostoevsky’s novella had several themes I thought worthy of a blog post: degenerate gambling, national identity, class and love. He is a lyrical writer, the prose sinuous and elegant.   Degenerate gambling:   The Dickensian name of the town where … Continue reading

Posted in Democracy, Dostoevsky | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Review: “Broken Vows. Tony Blair. The tragedy of power”.

I was 17 when Tony Blair first got elected in that magnificent landslide in 1997. I was transfixed by the jubilant and ecstatic celebration of democracy; that sea of red flags. Blair was young, articulate and in touch with an … Continue reading

Posted in Democracy | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment