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What’s new: latest Irish books and music

February 16, 2011

By Staff Reporter

DELIVER US FROM EVIL

Peter King

Move over Holmes and Watson and make way for Sean Cross and Bill Clinton. Yes indeed, Congressman Cross and the former president go about solving the mysterious death of an IRA informer in this, the second page-turning thriller from real-life Rep. Peter King. Cross, of course, is a thinly disguised King and this is a work of fiction, but there are so many real life characters jumping off the pages of this imaginative tale of murder and political intrigue that the reader will have to frequently check the front cover where it says, in small type at the bottom, “a novel.” Roberts Rinehart (1 [800] 462-6420 or www.roberts-rinehart.com) 326 pp. $24.95.

MAKING SENSE

OF THE TROUBLES

The Story of the conflict

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in Northern Ireland

David McKittrick and David McVea

The duo who brought us the compelling book “Lost Lives” have teamed up again to produce an important work that explains the background to, and course of, the recent Troubles in Northern Ireland. McKitterick is one of the most experienced and respected journalists that the North has produced in the last 30 years, while McVea is a widely respected academic. The authors have concentrated on making this book both readable and balanced in tone and as such it will have great appeal to the non-specialist reader. The book includes at one end a backgrounder to the Troubles spanning the period 1921-63. It concludes with a concise chronology spanning the years 1920-2001. Ivan R. Dee publishers, Chicago ([312] 787-6262, www.ivanrdee.com). 356 pp. $27.50.

CAROLAN’S GIFT

A Tribute to the

Legendary Irish Bard

Various artists

Eighteenth century Irish traditional/baroque composer Turlough O’Carolan was as prolific as he was musically gifted and his legacy is presented anew in this CD featuring some of the Celtic Chamber Folk genre’s finest musicians. In the lineup under the collective heading of Maggie’s Music Artists are players such as Sue Richards and the Ceoltoiri Celtic Ensemble. Harp, Irish flute, fiddle, hammered dulcimer and piano are but some of the instruments in play in this 14-track collection. Available in stores or directly from Maryland-based Maggie’s Music at toll-free 1 (877) 624-4436 or www.maggiesmusic.com.

AMERICAN CATHOLIC LAY GROUPS

AND TRANSATLANTIC SOCIAL

REFORM IN THE PROGRESSIVE ERA

Deirdre M. Moloney

A lengthy title but a timely subject given the present drama affecting the Catholic Church and the ever more complex binds linking Catholic clergy and laity. Moloney covers the period from 1880 to 1925, a time when lay Catholics in America, many of them belonging to a growing Catholic middle class, both competed with and walked in lockstep with established Protestant social reformers. Some, according to the cover notes, even challenged members of the Catholic hierarchy. The author is associate professor of history at St. Francis University in Loretto, Pa. University of North Carolina Press, P.O. Box 2288, Chapel Hill, NC 27515. 267 pp. $19.95.

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