The Spinning Heart
by Donal Ryan
Winner of the Guardian First Book Award 2013
Longlisted for the Man Booker Prize 2013
Winner of Book of the Year at the Irish Book Awards 2012
“My father still lives back the road past the weir in the cottage I was reared in. I go there every day to see is he dead and every day he lets me down. He hasn’t yet missed a day of letting me down.”
In the aftermath of Ireland’s financial collapse, dangerous tensions surface in an Irish town. As violence flares, the characters face a battle between public persona and inner desires. Through a chorus of unique voices, each struggling to tell their own kind of truth, a single authentic tale unfolds.
The Spinning Heart speaks for contemporary Ireland like no other novel. Wry, vulnerable, all-too human, it captures the language and spirit of rural Ireland and with uncanny perception articulates the words and thoughts of a generation. Technically daring and evocative of Patrick McCabe and J.M. Synge, this novel of small-town life is witty, dark and sweetly poignant.
Donal Ryan’s brilliantly realized debut announces a stunning new voice in literary fiction.
Ronan O'Gara: Unguarded
by Ronan O'Gara
Ronan O'Gara has been at the heart of Munster and Irish rugby for the past fifteen years. Now, as he comes to the end of a glittering playing career, it is time for him to reflect on those many successes and occasional failures with the straight-talking attitude that has become his trademark. Never one to shy away from the truth, the result is Ronan O'Gara: Unguarded.
Packed full of anecdotes and analysis of the teammates O'Gara has been proud to share the shirt with, and of the coaches he has played under - often in controversial circumstances - this is the definitive record of an era when Munster rose to triumph in Europe, and Ireland to win the Grand Slam, before crashing down to earth again. It is simply the must-have rugby book of the year.
Savita: The Tragedy that shook a nation
by Kitty Holland
Seventeen weeks pregnant and facing a miscarriage, Savita Halappanavar and her husband Praveen walked into an Irish maternity ward in October 2012. Unwittingly, the couple also walked into that deeply controversial arena in which Ireland’s legislative position on abortion remained unresolved.
A week later, Savita was dead from septicaemia. Reports of her death and of the refusal to allow Savita a termination of her pregnancy sent shockwaves across Ireland and around the world. Once again the subject of abortion was catapulted to the very top of the agenda in Ireland. With the pro-life and pro-choice camps claiming the moral high ground, both sides in the bitterly contested battle sought to appropriate Savita’s story and her image.
In the midst of the ensuing rage and furore, the marches and protests, the threats and counter-threats that exploded across political and media platforms, Savita and the complete circumstances of her death were lost.
In Savita: The Tragedy That Shook A Nation, Kitty Holland addresses this imbalance as she reveals the truth behind the headlines and explores many unanswered questions: Who was Savita? How significant was it that she was a non-Irish, non-Catholic woman in search of help on Irish soil? And how did her husband and her community’s reaction to her death shape the parameters of the debate which followed? Holland’s exposé also looks at how the tragic circumstances of Savita’s death played a part in compelling the Irish Government to finally legislate on abortion and how activists on each side succeeded or failed in shaping that legislation.
The Thing About December
by Donal Ryan
‘He heard Daddy one time saying he was a grand quiet boy to Mother when he thought Johnsey couldn’t hear them talking. Mother must have been giving out about him being a gom and Daddy was defending him. He heard the fondness in Daddy’s voice. But you’d have fondness for an auld eejit of a crossbred pup that should have been drowned at birth.’
While the Celtic Tiger rages, and greed becomes the norm, Johnsey Cunliffe desperately tries to hold on to the familiar, even as he loses those who all his life have protected him from a harsh world. Village bullies and scheming land-grabbers stand in his way, no matter where he turns.
Set over the course of one year of Johnsey’s life, The Thing About December breathes with his grief, bewilderment, humour and agonising self-doubt. This is a heart-twisting tale of a lonely man struggling to make sense of a world moving faster than he is.
Donal Ryan’s award-winning debut, The Spinning Heart, garnered unprecedented acclaim, and The Thing About December confirms his status as one of the best writers of his generation.
Day By Day
by Sister Stan
Sister Stan's new book, Day By Day offers words of wisdom that will inspire and comfort you on your journey through life. Thoughtful and reflective, it draws upon some of the most enlightened figures from both the past and the present as it gently guides you through your day.
Also included here are thought-provoking contributions on a range of subjects, including gratitude, belonging, friendship, courage and daring, from influential figures such as Abbott Mark Patrick Hederman, leading psychologist and founder of Headstrong, Dr Tony Bates, poet Brendan Kennelly, and producer/director Lelia Doolan – each helping Sister Stan to create an invaluable treasury for our times.