Say Nothing by Patrick Radden Keefe

Staff Pick

Patrick Radden Keefe’s Say Nothing: A True Story of Murder and Memory in Northern Ireland (Doubleday, $28.95) begins with the kidnap and murder of a mother of ten by members of the IRA. Keefe uses this incident as a jumping off point to tell the larger story of the violent confl ict that wracked the country during the Troubles, in the 1970s and ‘80s. Keefe also introduces the glamorous Dolours Price, who joined the IRA after her attempts at non-violent protest were met with hatred and bloodshed. Responsible for some of the high-profile bombings in London, Price became the face of the radical chic IRA fighter, close to Gerry Adams and other political fi gures in Sinn Féin. Altogether, the events in Say Nothing put a human face to the yearslong struggle in Northern Ireland, showing the extreme brutality of both sides in the conflict.


Say Nothing: A True Story of Murder and Memory in Northern Ireland By Patrick Radden Keefe Cover Image
ISBN: 9780385521314
Availability: Special Order—Subject to Availability
Published: Doubleday - February 26th, 2019

Time Song: Journeys in Search of a Submerged Land -- Julia Blackburn

Staff Pick

Blackburn’s beautiful and empathetic narrative uses memoir, travel, and several sciences to investigate the nature of time by way of an exploration of Doggerland, the submerged landmass that until 6,000 years ago connected Britain to Europe. A phenomenon as well as a casualty of climate change, Doggerland, which at various periods was a savannah and a frozen steppe, existed only vaguely until North Sea trawlers began hauling up bones, fossils, and tools in the early 20th century. Fascinated with “trying to see through the fact of absence” to what is over yet still exists, Blackburn traveled through Denmark, Holland, and the British coast, talking with archeologists, geologists, and fossil collectors about the deep past. She’s a meticulous observer and her narrative is full of wonderful details, from the laminations that preserve imprints of footsteps or raindrops from tens of thousands of years ago to the rhino fossil with bits of hawthorn in its teeth. Intertwined with these field expeditions are Blackburn’s more personal excavations of time. Revisiting places she once lived, she’s plunged into a past that has all the immediacy of the present; just as when she holds an ancient artefact or repeats an African folktale, she’s struck by the simultaneity of different times. This includes the intimation that “time passes backwards as well as forwards,” and Blackburn’s effort to think her way into the lives of the Doggerlanders as they saw their homeland drowning gives a taste of what people in low-lying areas are beginning to face now as the climate undergoes its next, wrenching upheaval.

Time Song: Journeys in Search of a Submerged Land By Julia Blackburn, Enrique Brinkmann (Illustrator) Cover Image
ISBN: 9781101871676
Availability: Special Order—Subject to Availability
Published: Pantheon - August 6th, 2019

Who Killed My Father -- Edouard Louis

Staff Pick

In Who Killed My Father, Edouard Louis has created both a tender love letter from a son to his father, chronicling the timeline of their strained and yet loving relationship, and a searing indictment of the French government’s policies against the poor and the marginalized. In this slim volume, less than a hundred pages in total, Louis navigates between two modes: loving melancholy for his father of which he writes: “I knew I loved you, but I felt a need to tell other people that I hated you” and seething anger for the upper and the ruling class who are indifferent towards the poor and marginalized. Who Killed My Father is required reading for our troubled times where political awareness must be matched with empathy and love.


Who Killed My Father By Edouard Louis, Lorin Stein (Translated by) Cover Image
By Edouard Louis, Lorin Stein (Translated by)
ISBN: 9780811228503
Availability: Special Order—Subject to Availability
Published: New Directions - March 26th, 2019