One City One Book
This post is for my friend, DeNel, who will no doubt be curious about the 2014 book selection for Belfast’s Once City One Book: it is David Park’s, The Poet’s Wife.
Sorry, no Kindle version available yet.
In interviews with a select group of Northern Irish authors, playwrights, arts administrators and, television presenters about other book recommendations from Northern Ireland, the titles (below) were mentioned; some were mentioned more than once. Probably because of the age of most of those who were asked, the books seem to disproportionately reflect Northern Ireland’s ‘troubles.’ Not surprisingly, [insert loud sigh], more men than women were asked to share their recommendations and, the single book authored by a woman would likely be classified as Young Adult, Romance. (Somewhere, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie is sighing aloud too, and saying – again – that a novel doesn’t only have to be about one thing. But no one appears to be listening…)
This doesn’t take anything away from The Poet’s Wife, which I am planning to read. But, despite this list, there is no shortage of women writing in Northern Ireland. The local writing group is a good example of this. However, to read this rather predictable list, you’d think that it would be a very good idea for men to write about women, and for women who write, to publish on another planet.
The Truth Commissioner, David Parks
Number 5, Glenn Patterson
Across the Barricades (Young Adult), Joan Lingard
Little Girl Lost, Brian McGilloway
The Doctor’s Wife, Brian Moore
The Lonely Passion of Judith Hearne, Brian Moore
My Lady of the Chimney Corner, Alexander Irvine
Divorcing Jack, Colin Bateman
Cure, Carlo Gebler
The Wayward Man, St. John Irvine