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Say Nothing: A True Story of Murder and Memory in Northern Ireland

A NEW YORK TIMES TOP TEN BOOK OF THE YEAR

FINALIST FOR THE NATIONAL BOOK CRITICS CIRCLE AWARD

LONGLISTED FOR THE NATIONAL BOOK AWARD 

WINNER OF THE ORWELL PRIZE

BEST NONFICTION BOOK OF THE YEAR – TIME MAGAZINE

A WASHINGTON POST TOP TEN BOOK OF THE YEAR

NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER

Named a best book of the year by The Wall Street Journal, EW, The Economist, The Chicago Tribune, GQ, Slate, NPR, Variety, Slate, TIME, Minneapolis Star Tribune, St. Louis Post Dispatch, The Dallas Morning News, Buzzfeed, Kirkus Reviews, and BookPage

Named a best book of the decade by Literary Hub and EW

“Masked intruders dragged Jean McConville, a 38-year-old widow and mother of 10, from her Belfast home in 1972. In this meticulously reported book — as finely paced as a novel — Keefe uses McConville’s murder as a prism to tell the history of the Troubles in Northern Ireland. Interviewing people on both sides of the conflict, he transforms the tragic damage and waste of the era into a searing, utterly gripping saga.” – New York Times Book Review, Ten Best Books of the Year

From award-winning New Yorker staff writer Patrick Radden Keefe, a stunning, intricate narrative about a notorious killing in Northern Ireland and its devastating repercussions

In December 1972, Jean McConville, a thirty-eight-year-old mother of ten, was dragged from her Belfast home by masked intruders, her children clinging to her legs. They never saw her again. Her abduction was one of the most notorious episodes of the vicious conflict known as The Troubles. Everyone in the neighborhood knew the I.R.A. was responsible. But in a climate of fear and paranoia, no one would speak of it. In 2003, five years after an accord brought an uneasy peace to Northern Ireland, a set of human bones was discovered on a beach. McConville’s children knew it was their mother when they were told a blue safety pin was attached to the dress–with so many kids, she had always kept it handy for diapers or ripped clothes.

Patrick Radden Keefe’s mesmerizing book on the bitter conflict in Northern Ireland and its aftermath uses the McConville case as a starting point for the tale of a society wracked by a violent guerrilla war, a war whose consequences have never been reckoned with. The brutal violence seared not only people like the McConville children, but also I.R.A. members embittered by a peace that fell far short of the goal of a united Ireland, and left them wondering whether the killings they committed were not justified acts of war, but simple murders. From radical and impetuous I.R.A. terrorists such as Dolours Price, who, when she was barely out of her teens, was already planting bombs in London and targeting informers for execution, to the ferocious I.R.A. mastermind known as The Dark, to the spy games and dirty schemes of the British Army, to Gerry Adams, who negotiated the peace but betrayed his hardcore comrades by denying his I.R.A. past–Say Nothing conjures a world of passion, betrayal, vengeance, and anguish.

Reblogged 1 month ago from www.amazon.com

Comments

Anonymous says:

A caveat about a very good book, otherwise worthy of five stars. This book fulfills the needs of many of us who have relied upon limited accounts in US news media to understand the decades of “The Troubles” in Northern Ireland. Its detail complements what I learned during a visit to Northern Ireland in 2010 which helped me to understand the causes and impacts of the strife there and to anticipate the risks to the stability of the intervening two decades of “peace” which are threatened as decisions about post-Brexit borders loom.My caveat about…

Anonymous says:

A must read I visited Northern Ireland as a psychologist, in 1997. I had been working with families of murder victims, and had the chance to learn about the differences between street violence in America and political violence in Northern Ireland. Nothing prepared me for what I found.Keefe’s book is the best book I have read about the reasons for, and impact of, political violence in Ireland. It goes deeper into the minds and lives of IRA operatives than anything I have read. It is terribly…

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