First Slugger Book Club

I’m on sabbatical next week. Part holiday, part catch up on some offline stuff that need to catch up on. Next you hear from me should be the ‘return to Stormont’ (hammer horror productions). I’m hoping to get a ring side seat in the Great Hall, but it sounds like there’s going to be some stiff competition for places. In the meantime, we start our first installment of the Slugger O’Toole bookclub!The three books featured this month are Seamus Deane’s picaresque masterpiece, Reading in the Dark; David McWilliams’ study of the changing demographics of the Republic, The Pope’s Children; and Brian Lynch’s long poem on Northern Ireland, Pity for the Wicked. All but the last can be bought from Amazon. Lynch’s book can be ordered from ReadIreland. Read along with us (and vote for your favourite) until our podcast discussion towards the end of the month. If there’s enough interest, we may even organise a real time session in Belfast, Dublin or London!

  • The Devil

    Can you make them picture books with big writing and small words for the slugger regulars.

  • ecce romani

    What about suggestions as to the best books on northern ireland politics or autobiographies of our ESTEEMED politicians

    personally i really enjoyed strait left by paddy devlin but thats my opinion.

  • The Devil

    ecce romani,

    I have not read it but would be interested to know if he mentioned an attempted murder he took part in even briefly in the book.

  • ecce romani

    message to satan

    I read the book quite a few years ago and although he doesnt present himself as perfect i dont remember him mentioning any attempted murder but then he wouldnt would he!!

    given that chris ryder wrote the foreward of the book I very much doubt that your insinuation is true unless you have some inside information or just like to spread false accusations

  • The Devil

    He along with another man who shall remain nameless (still alive) jumped over a wall in Ton Street in the lower Falls and into the back alley armed with a Thompson sub-machine gun in order to kill two police men one a plain clothes detective and the other the uniformed officer “Pig” McNielly.
    Fortunately for all four men involved the gun jammed and the two policemen blissfully unaware went about thier buisness, lived long lives “The Pig” seeing out his days peacefully on the Glen Rd in West Belfast. Paddy Devlin went into politics and the un-named individual an extremely wealthy man indeed went to England to earn his fortune.
    The plain clothes detective who incidently was the target of the attack may have been called Coulter or Cahoon not sure which.

  • ecce romani

    i am not keen on unsustantiated accusations but it seems as if you have some local knowledge that I cant dispute one way or another.

    if its true then i am glad the gun jammed as life is precious and although I saw enough death and destruction over the last thirty years there are things i cant forget which i may share with this site when i feel able

  • The Devil

    By the way ecce romani in case you think i was having a pop at Paddy Devlin I just want you to know I wasn’t, what he got up to in the 40s and 50s was no concern of mine.
    I admire his social politics to a fair degree and another little piece of tittle tattle about the man was on more than one occassion while living on the Shaws Rd he put his hand in his pocket to give money for men to bring home to thier wives after they had lost thier wages in the local bookies, whether or not he was ever repaid remains a mystery.

    Although that said I still would have prefered Joe Devlin to Paddy Devlin every time

  • Excellent move Mick – good to see you stayng ahead of the gang. Although can you not sell the books through the site and make a few quid in the process?

  • Cap’n Morgan

    Nothing too big – I just got finished colouring David Beckham’s.

  • missfitz

    So how does this work Mick? We read them and post comments here? Call me gullible, but I just ordered the 2 off Amazon and look forward to reading them

  • susan

    lol @ Cap’n Morgan.

    If Missfitz is in, so am I. I own “The Pope’s Children” — although I’ve never gotten the chance to finish it — and I’ll get the other two.

    How much time do we have?

  • missfitz

    I have an exam next week, so naturally I will get both books read within the week! Any excuse not to study.
    Although ironically I seem to do as much research for slugger answers as I do for queens!