One May afternoon a few years ago my wife asked me to come for a walk in the woodland just outside Carndonagh, the Donegal town where she was born. She wanted to show me where she and her friends had played when they were children. By the time we reached the…Continue
In April 2004 I was launching my first novel at the Irish cultural centre in Hammersmith, London, when a lady came over to me and shook my hand.
“I think I may be your cousin,” she said. “My name is Ethna Herron. You…Continue
Shortly after the death of Martin McGuinness, I listened to a radio discussion about the Provisional IRA and its origins. Among the contributors was Ruth Dudley Edwards, the self-professed revisionist historian. At one stage in the programme, I heard her say, “I…Continue
In 1961 a great Irish writer called Francis Stuart wrote a novel the like of which had not been seen before. It was entitled Black List Section H, and it didn’t find a publisher for eight years because Stuart had been banished from the literary world. In 1939, shortly before the…Continue