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#20 Eiléan Ní Chuilleanáin's Poetic Licence Earned

City of Books

Release Date: 01/28/2021

#41 LOVE AND LOSS show art #41 LOVE AND LOSS

City of Books

As Somerville and Ross they were a dynamic literary partnership. When Ross died, Edith Somerville convinced herself they could continue to collaborate on books - by communicating beyond the grave through spiritualism. Martina Devlin talks about her novel Edith, set in 1921-22 against a backdrop of civil unrest leading to Irish independence. It follows Edith’s attempts to save both home – Drishane House – and literary career. She is interviewed by fellow novelist Nuala O'Connor. Edith: A Novel by Martina Devlin is published by The Lilliput Press. More here:

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#40 Sara Baume on Stepping Back show art #40 Sara Baume on Stepping Back

City of Books

Sara Baume is unafraid to use her own life in her writing, while insisting on its status as fiction. She does it again in her new book Seven Steeples, a gentle and thought-provoking novel spanning seven years. It’s about a couple and their two rescue dogs who drop off the radar and live a quiet life doing as little harm to the planet as possible. “Everything I write is always an extremity of my actual existence. It’s sort of like a smudged out version of us, I suppose,” says Sara, who moved to the countryside 11 years ago and currently lives with her partner in West Cork. She also...

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#39 Gen Z Surfers On Social Media Sharkfest show art #39 Gen Z Surfers On Social Media Sharkfest

City of Books

If you think you’re obsessed with being online, you should meet the characters in début author Catherine Prasifka’s novel None of This Is Serious. Her book deals with the preoccupations of Gen Z, coming of age right now. Despite their shiny new lives, they fear a lifetime of being locked out of home ownership, and worry about whether the planet can survive. Above all, they think long periods interacting with social media platforms is time well-spent. “We’ve only had the internet for thirty years and we’ve only had the social internet for half of that time," says Catherine. "And...

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#38 Marching To Her Own Beat show art #38 Marching To Her Own Beat

City of Books

“The past is never dead. It’s not even past,” said William Faulkner – and the past is ever-present, but with a twist, in Rosemary Jenkinson’s short story collection Marching Season. The Belfast playwright and short story writer tackles rioting, bonfires to mark the Twelfth of July, TED talks, and one-night-stands and threesomes in her no-holds-barred stories. Here, Rosemary also reflects on the numbing effect of cancel culture and discusses her own experience. Marching Season is published by Arlen House

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#37 Breaking Point: Burned Out and Bottoming Out show art #37 Breaking Point: Burned Out and Bottoming Out

City of Books

Everyone is talking about Edel Coffey’s debut novel which deals with Forgotten Baby Syndrome, every exhausted-by-the-juggle parent’s nightmare. Breaking Point tells of a high-powered career woman who accidentally leaves her baby in the car on a boiling hot day – with tragic consequences. Amid the guilt and grief, she is put on trial for manslaughter. Inspired by a true story. For more on Breaking Point:

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#36 Making Music With Birds And Bugs show art #36 Making Music With Birds And Bugs

City of Books

“Birds sing because they have to – because they must,” says the man who knows more than most about the subject, Professor David Rothenberg, an American musician, philosopher and writer whose books include Why Birds Sing, Nightingales in Berlin and Bug Music.  “Birdsong is the real classic music, this is oldest music we know. It’s been around so much longer than the human species – it’s stood the test of time,” he says. “It’s in their very nature to need to sing, just like humans need to make music – we just have to do it. It’s part of the very essence of being a...

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#35 Learwife - Hatching and Hoping show art #35 Learwife - Hatching and Hoping

City of Books

“I had to create her out of nothing,” says JR Thorp of her debut novel Learwife, which explores the untold story of King Lear’s wife.

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#34 Carlo Gébler on the Power of Greek Myths show art #34 Carlo Gébler on the Power of Greek Myths

City of Books

Famously, King Oedipus killed his father and married his mother. That's what everyone knows about the Greek myth. But Carlo Gébler sets out to humanise the story.

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#33 BIG TOP, BIG DREAMS - SARAH WEBB show art #33 BIG TOP, BIG DREAMS - SARAH WEBB

City of Books

A chance meeting with a circus professor fired Sarah Webb’s imagination and led to her latest novel.

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#32 Myth-Making Michael Collins show art #32 Myth-Making Michael Collins

City of Books

Michael Collins is the the Irish Civil War's most famous casualty but there is a lot of “what-if-ery”about him, says Ireland’s best-known historian Diarmaid Ferriter.

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Poet Eiléan Ní Chuilleanáin talks about a time when books were banned in Ireland.

And how her mother, distinguished children's writer Eilís Dillon, had a cupboard of them which she handed out to the family.

“It was, of course, nonsensical that they were banned," says Eiléan.

“You had to go out and get them quickly when they were first published."

Eiléan was recently named winner of China’s prestigious 1573 International Poetry Award.

Produced and presented by Martina Devlin.

Music by Daragh Dukes.

Eiléan's Collected Poems spanning more than half a century available from the Gallery Press website here: https://www.gallerypress.com/authors/m-to-n/eilean-ni-chuilleanain/