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The Irish Literary Times
Up-to-Date Coverage of The World of Irish Literature
Curated by Gerard Beirne
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Mojo Mickybo by Owen McCafferty

Mojo Mickybo by Owen McCafferty | The Irish Literary Times | Scoop.it
While Owen McCafferty is currently under commission to write the book and lyrics for a musical version of this play, first staged in 1998 by Kabosh, and a film version directed by Terry Loane was released in 2004, the joy of Mojo Mickybo is in the virtuoso performances it inspires and requires from its actors on stage. This production has a pared down staging, with the two actors Chris Grant (Mojo) and Seamus O'Hara (Mickybo) dressed in identical white plimsolls, grey tracksuit bottoms and white t-shirts. The stage is bare except for two chairs with flip chart paper attached to the back, and a screen at the back. The actors, then, have to both create the setting and play the action, switching between numerous roles, across age and gender.
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Niamh Boyce on The Herbalist & How it All Happened

Niamh Boyce on The Herbalist & How it All Happened | The Irish Literary Times | Scoop.it
When I first came across the central idea for The Herbalist, I didn’t even know I wanted to write. I was nineteen and working with old local newspapers, indexing their contents in preparation for computerisation.
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Yeats day – A celebration of the Irish poet takes place in Japan

Yeats day – A celebration of the Irish poet takes place in Japan | The Irish Literary Times | Scoop.it

Yeats Day is an annual festival held in Ireland to commemorate Ireland’s most famous poet William Butler Yeats. It is held in his hometown of Sligo around his birthday 13 June. Given the special connection between Yeats and Japan, the Sligo Yeats Society and the Embassy of Ireland have organised a special event in Japan to showcase this festival, Irish culture and the beautiful region of Sligo which was an important source of inspiration for the great poet.

Talks will be given by authorities on Yeats’ life and works (consecutive interpretation provided in Japanese).

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Mary Shine-Thompson salutes author Deirdre Madden's triumphant new novel

Mary Shine-Thompson salutes author Deirdre Madden's triumphant new novel | The Irish Literary Times | Scoop.it
Deirdre Madden's ninth novel, Time Present and Time Past, is set literally at the dead centre of her characters' lives: at the phase of middle age when they are halfway to the grave.
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Review" The Herbalist by Niamh Boyce

Review" The Herbalist by Niamh Boyce | The Irish Literary Times | Scoop.it

When she wrote this novel, Niamh Boyce couldn't have known that, by the time it was published, abortion would be such a pressing political issue once more in Ireland...

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Waiting For Elvis

Waiting For Elvis | The Irish Literary Times | Scoop.it
Two strange friends wait for the return of the King until kingdom come

 

A park bench. A tree. Evening. Two figures on the margins of society await one endlessly delayed arrival. In Eileen Gibbons’s engaging and delicately wrought play, the odds that the King, Elvis Presley, will keep this appointment are only slightly better than those of Godot showing up. At least innocent newcomer Elizabeth (Gillian McCarthy) seems dimly aware of one inconvenience: his death (“It was on the news”). But Lisa Marie (Anne Kent), a true believer, weathered and terse by her long vigil, has the power of conviction: “It’s all part of his plan.”

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Town and Country: New Irish Short Stories, edited by Kevin Barry

Town and Country: New Irish Short Stories, edited by Kevin Barry | The Irish Literary Times | Scoop.it

The Irish short story “has come alive again and is wriggling and it has about it all the demonic energy (and the undeniable immediacy) of a newborn infant”. It is “pulsing with great, mad and rude new energies”. So writes Kevin Barry in his introduction to Faber’s fourth anthology of Irish stories, and his claim is fully backed up by the 20 tales in his sharp, lively and varied selection...

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Kevin Barry, a king of the language kingdoms

Kevin Barry, a king of the language kingdoms | The Irish Literary Times | Scoop.it
In person, Kevin Barry is as exuberant and sharp as his prose – and his Impac for ‘City of Bohane’ confirms he is a true literary original
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Kevin Barry wins Impac literary award

Kevin Barry wins Impac literary award | The Irish Literary Times | Scoop.it
City of Bohane, thriller set in a futuristic west of Ireland, takes €100,000 prize

 

“It’s a fantastic thrill for me,” said Barry. “It’s a big money prize, and it’s always useful for a poor writer to be put in the vicinity of stacks of cash. It’s an unpredictable life and it’s great to be able to buy time to sit in my little room and invent these demented little words.”

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Picardy – David Farrell / Picardy – Harry Clifton | The Poetry Project

Picardy – David Farrell / Picardy – Harry Clifton  |   The Poetry Project | The Irish Literary Times | Scoop.it
The clouds of Ireland gathered over France

Flights of swallows blowing hot and cold

In their own force-fields and the weightless dance

Of insects before

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Torch – Niamh O’Malley / In Fluntern Cemetery – Philip McDonagh | The Poetry Project

Torch – Niamh O’Malley / In Fluntern Cemetery – Philip McDonagh  |   The Poetry Project | The Irish Literary Times | Scoop.it
In Fluntern Cemetery/Philip McDonagh

Geboren Dublin; Zürich gestorben. So
Narrates a simple gravestone. Some blackbirds,
A squirrel sudden on the frozen snow, 
An emptiness that greets you in those words.

Onwards the blue tram climbed that took me there
And higher; to one who had his eyrie dreamed
Above the Zrichsee, and breathed this air,
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Can't Forget About You by David Ireland

Can't Forget About You by David Ireland | The Irish Literary Times | Scoop.it

For those familiar with his work, the title of David Ireland's new play, written during his tenure as writer-in-residence at the Lyric Theatre, is something of a double-edged sword, referencing not only its central theme of an irresistible - if unlikely - love affair but also the unforgettable content of what has gone before. Ireland, who trained as an actor - and notched up some impressive credits early in his stage career - has amassed a rapidly-growing canon of work since his first play What the Animals Say was produced just four years ago.

 
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With J.P. Donleavy In Ireland

With J.P. Donleavy In Ireland | The Irish Literary Times | Scoop.it
We were in Ireland visiting my dear friend Shaun Beary who owns a beautiful rundown horse farm in County Meath. On the last day of our stay we were invited to meet Michael "J.P." Donleavy, author of The Ginger Man.

 

Mullingar is a long, narrow town and on that day it was raining heavily when we arrived. Shaun was determined that we acquire a copy of The Ginger Man so that the author might dedicate it to us. There were three booksellers in the village and we ran from one to the other without luck or an umbrella. Not only did they not have the work in question, not a single book by Donleavy was to be had in all of Mullingar. This too, for reasons I cannot explain, was also very Irish.

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Imagine The World; The Hay Festival Comes to Kells

Imagine The World; The Hay Festival Comes to Kells | The Irish Literary Times | Scoop.it
The newest Hay Festival will be Hay Festival Kells, to be held this summer from 28–30 June 2013. The full programme was launched internationally at Hay Festival in Wales on Sunday 2 June by Sinead Cusack and is now available at hayfestival.org/kells.
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McCann's 'TransAtlantic' Crosses Fiction And Fact, Ireland And U.S. : NPR

McCann's 'TransAtlantic' Crosses Fiction And Fact, Ireland And U.S. : NPR | The Irish Literary Times | Scoop.it
Novelist Colum McCann decided to write about the ties that bind his homeland, Ireland, with the United States, where he now lives. But he wanted to stay far away from cliches about being Irish-American.
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The Quirke in Banville's genius

The Quirke in Banville's genius | The Irish Literary Times | Scoop.it
This is the sixth Quirke thriller that Black/Banville has produced since the series opened in September 2006 with Christine Falls. The series was interrupted/augmented by Black's The Lemur in 2008, by Banville's amazing The Infinities in 2009 and the gorgeous Ancient Light last year. It is evident that Banville's assumption of a different writing persona has been creatively a smart move, allowing him access to an enhanced productivity in novels that operate at a lower pressure, so to speak, than those he produces under his own name.
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The Factory Girls - Frank McGuinness

The Factory Girls - Frank McGuinness | The Irish Literary Times | Scoop.it
Thirty years after its debut, Frank McGuinness’s play is back on the production line

 

More than 30 years after it was premiered at the Abbey, Frank McGuinness’s rumbustious early play has found a spiritual home among the faded cream tiles, iron pillars and concrete floors of Derry’s long-abandoned City Factory.

From the mid-19th century, thousands of skilled women were employed in this vast, red-brick premises, where they sewed fine white-collar shirts for business executives abroad. McGuinness isolates and dramatises one of many similar tragedies unfolding in the lives of working people since the 1970s.

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John Banville: the movies and me

John Banville: the movies and me | The Irish Literary Times | Scoop.it
It took John Banville three years to write a book, and three days to turn it into his first film script. Money for jam, or beginner’s luck?
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Kevin Barry a worthy winner of the Impac but chosen from a poor shortlist

Kevin Barry a worthy winner of the Impac but chosen from a poor shortlist | The Irish Literary Times | Scoop.it

 this year’s shortlist was one of the most disappointing in the 18-year history of the prize. And this in a year when there were, among the longlist of 154 library nominations, several wonderful novels, including – in my opinion – two worthy winners.

The Libyan writer Hisham Matar’s magnificently elegiac Anatomy of a Disappearance, which goes a long way to explaining the horrors of Libya, towered above all else. Nominated by three libraries, including Cork City Libraries, Anatomy of a Disappearance was the novel that should have won. It was not even shortlisted.

 
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Irish writer Kevin Barry scoops €100,000 IMPAC literary award

Irish writer Kevin Barry scoops €100,000 IMPAC literary award | The Irish Literary Times | Scoop.it
IRISH writer Kevin Barry has won the €100,000 International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award.

He won the prestigious award for his debut novel City of Bohane 

He beat other big names on the shortlist of ten, including Michel Houellebecq and Andrew Miller (both previous winners, as well as the bestselling Japanese writer  Haruki Murakami.

The winning novel is set 40 years into the future in a ruined city on the west coast of Ireland, a place laid waste by gang violence

 
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