Category: Reviews

Sr Wendy and the spirit of art

Sister Wendy’s 100 Best-loved Paintings compiled by Sr Wendy Beckett (SPCK, £25.00) This is both the latest and the last book of the celebrated TV art critic, Sr Wendy Beckett, who died last Christmastide at the age of 88, on the feast of St Stephen. She was not, as many seemed to think, a nun…

The PEN book…mightier than the sword?

A Personal Perspective on Irish PEN by J Anthony Gaughan (Kingdom Books, €15.00) PEN was an international association of writers founded in London in 1921 – the initials stood for ‘Poets, Essayists and Novelists’, but in fact many kinds of writers are now members. The club, as its members thought of it, was intended to…

The human face of the 9/11 tragedy

Fall and Rise: the story of 9/11 by Mitchell Zuckoff (HarperCollins, £25.00) Felix M. Larkin Not very often do I read a book that I know will live forever in my memory. This is one such book. It tells the stories of a few of the victims of the terrorist attacks in America on September…

Panning for gold on the Catholic internet

Some weeks ago I was lucky enough to be present in England’s New Forest for my god-daughter’s first profession as a Dominican sister. Her community, the Dominican Sisters of St Joseph, is a remarkable group of women – warm, supportive, fun, energetic, contemplative and evangelical – and very much a case study in G.K. Chesterton’s…

Good show but a broader canvas needed

In place of religious services on Sunday Mornings, RTÉ 1 has been trying out a new format on an occasional basis. I’m a big fan of Life and Soul, and enjoyed the latest episode last Sunday morning. As usual the focus was on personal stories interspersed with prayers, bible readings and musical interludes. And it’s…

When Ulster armies clashed at night

Nights in Armour by Samuel Thompson (Mercier Press, €14.99) With the question of Ulster back in the fore of European politics, this new novel reminds us of just what the condition were in the grim past of that province that wise leaders in the Republic and the EU, Northern Ireland and Britain should seek to…

Popular lore in field and street

Mainly About Books By the books editor Among the many institutions that derive from the 1920s that still survive to this day the Folklore Department of University College Dublin is the most interesting, and perhaps the most culturally significant. Its productions, such as a recent work on the folklore of our coast-wise fishing communities, often…