Say Nothing

Say Nothing

A True Story of Murder and Memory in Northern Ireland

Book - 2019
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"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 IRA 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 garments--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 IRA 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 IRA 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 IRA 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 IRA past--[this book] conjures a world of passion, betrayal, vengeance, and anguish."--Dust jacket.
"A narrative about a notorious killing that took place in Northern Ireland during The Troubles and its devastating repercussions to this day"-- Provided by publisher.
Publisher: New York :, Doubleday,, [2019]
Edition: First edition
ISBN: 9780385521314
Branch Call Number: 364.152 Keefe 2019
364.1523 K26
Characteristics: xii, 441 pages : illustrations ; 24 cm


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Apr 16, 2019

This book is a tremendous historical look at "The Troubles" in the 60's and 70's and up til now. I heard about the story of this mother being kidnapped from her home right in front of her kids and never being heard from again and wanted to know more about it. No one stepped up to take care of the kids, they were shunned because the father was a Protestant and the mother was a Catholic. They were left to fend for themselves until they were taken into Catholic schools where they were beaten and sexually abused. The bigger picture that is described here helped me finally understand the IRA, the divisions, the Provos, the hostilities handed down from generation to generation and the many people killed, maimed, left fatherless, and living in dire poverty. England was a cruel colonizer of Ireland. Now that Brexit may stir this up again due to establishing a hard border is a horrible thing to contemplate. I encourage anyone Irish, or interested in history, gang wars in Chicago, the role of religion, to read this, it is very enlightening. There are many parallels between this seemingly never ending spiral of distrust and violence between Protestants and Catholics and Britain and Ireland and what happens in our inner cities.


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