Book review — Touching Distance (James CRACKNELL)

Reading this book was always going to have a special meaning to me, as my wife had a stroke about two years ago. Like James and Bev, my wife and I are writing a book together about our experience. We honestly came up with the same chapter layout as them — alternative narrations. In these types of […]

Book review – To Kill a Mockingbird (Harper LEE)

Book review – To Kill a Mockingbird (Harper LEE)

Somehow I escaped reading this essential school text, with its story of racism in 1930s American South. Living in Northern Ireland, I draw parallels with sectarianism, with its similar bigotry and prejudice. To Kill a Mockingbird was part of a Unite Against Hate campaign event at Parliament Buildings in Northern Ireland, which I’ve written about […]

Book review – Paperboy (Tony MACAULAY)

Book review – Paperboy (Tony MACAULAY)

Tony Macaulay is a respected professional community relations and youth worker based in Belfast. For example, he has written independently, “A discussion paper proposing a five phase process for the removal of ‘peace walls’ in Northern Ireland”. This book is his story of being a 12-year-old paperboy, living in the Shankill area of West Belfast. […]

Book review – Kosovo: What Everyone Needs to Know (Tim JUDAH)

Book review – Kosovo: What Everyone Needs to Know (Tim JUDAH)

I was once asked if I thought the Northern Ireland conflict was difficult to comprehend. Not really, I replied. What confounded me was that as so many people within Northern Ireland understood the various factors involved, why work towards any resolution took so long. Put another way, I found comprehending the geo-political situation of former […]

Book review – Eyewitness (Brendan MURPHY)

Book review – Eyewitness (Brendan MURPHY)

I always wanted this book, Eyewitness: Four Decades of Northern Life, by Brendan Murphy, but the original cover price of £30 was a little steep for me. Thankfully, the Bookshop at Queen’s has it discounted to £8. I only had to wait 6 years. It is a brilliant book. Murphy’s photographs may not be the […]

Book review – Ordinary Lives

Book review – Ordinary Lives

Book review: Ordinary Lives by Allan LEONARD for Shared Future News 8 January 2009 In recent years there has been an influx into Northern Ireland of new arrivals from east European countries, as well as more familiar western places of Portugal and Spain.