Category: Reviews

Making the cure with a local healer

Ireland’s Hidden Medicine: An exploration of Irish indigenous medicine from legend and myth to the present day by Rosarie Kingston (Aeon Books, €19.99/£16.99) This book will be compelling reading for those interested in folk medicine, also known as indigenous or traditional medicine. Such ideas are an important part of our heritage, for some of these ideas…

The devious-minded Duchess of Death 

Agatha Christie: A Very Elusive Woman by Lucy Worsley (Hodder & Stoughton, €23.99/£25.00) Dr Lucy Worsley has become very much a fixture on our small screens, with a distinct penchant for dressing up in period costumes, which to some leaves an impression of history as mere fancy dress with a modern accent, rather than the…

Sensationalistic slant sullies Synge-song scenario

When the inimitable Sam Goldwyn was asked once what was wrong with the American film industry he famously replied, “We need some new cliches”. Writer/director Martin McDonagh, in his ambition to be the Irish Quentin Tarantino, has spent the last number of years providing us with his version of these. He’s unpicked stage-Irishry with some…

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The temptation of power looms large

The media’s obsession with the ‘far right’ tends to give the far left a free pass, which just might be the whole purpose. I’m three episodes into The Walk-In (UTV, Mondays), a gripping true-life drama about efforts to expose the far right group National Action in the UK. Stephen Graham plays campaigning journalist Matthew Collins,…

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Brexit in Boris’s hands

Ireland’s Call: Navigating Brexit, by Stephen Collins (Red Stripe Press / Orpen Press, €19.99 / £19.99) This new book by the Irish Times political columnist is a splendid account of how Brexit was hatched and has become a matter of grave contention. One of the main sources for Stephen Collins’ book is the diary of…