His­tory, ad­dic­tion and life through the eyes of a cow


Sunday Independent (Ireland) - Living - - BOOKS -

Cor­po­rate skul­dug­gery, cults and crime are just some of the wide range of sub­jects tack­led in new pub­li­ca­tions over the next six months, writes Hi­lary A White

THE start of any year is al­ways go­ing to be crammed with self- help ti­tles as peo­ple come out of the speed-wob­ble of Christ­mas and New Year. One that stands out, how­ever, will be Slow At Work (Gill Books).

Food writer, events or­gan­iser and gen­eral won­der woman Aoife Mcel­wain sets out her tips on how to “work less, achieve more and re­gain your bal­ance in an al­ways-on world”. Free­lancers, take note.

Where The Past Be­gins (Fourth Es­tate) will see New York Times best­selling au­thor Amy Tan re­count her trau­matic up­bring­ing as the child of Chi­nese im­mi­grants to the US. Open-heart surgery is ex­pected... The same goes for Brave (HQ), the mem­oir of Amer­i­can ac­tress Rose Mcgowan’s early years grow­ing up in a cult.

Arthur Her­man’s 1917 (Harper) looks like a fas­ci­nat­ing his­tor­i­cal and geopo­lit­i­cal in­ves­ti­ga­tion into how Vladimir Lenin and Woodrow Wil­son changed the na­ture of for­eign pol­icy for­ever and ush­ered in a “new world dis­or­der”. mean­while, sees ac­claimed US com­men­ta­tor Joanne Lip­man build on the in­ter­est gar­nered by her Wall Street Jour­nal ar­ti­cle ‘Women at Work: A Guide for Men’ and ex­pand its equal­ity-in-the-work­place man­i­festo.

An is­sue be­gin­ning to come into sharp fo­cus is screen ad­dic­tion — mean­ing that Cather­ine Price’s How To Break Up With Your Phone (Tra-

‘Lynch can al­ways be trusted to weave in hard truths’

peze) is most timely. In it, the sci­ence jour­nal­ist vows to help you con­quer your phone ad­dic­tion in 30 days.

Wak­ing ad­dicts up to the se­ri­ous­ness of their prob­lem might be a chal­lenge, how­ever.

Real-crime in­trigue hope­fully awaits us in The Good Moth­ers ( Wil­liam Collins), Alex Perry’s saga about the heroic women caught at the cen­tre of Italy’s largest mafia fam­ily, the ‘Ndrangheta.

Al­ready peo­ple are get­ting ex­cited about Maybe Es­ther (Fourth Es­tate), best­selling au­thor Katja Petrowskaja’s telling of her fam­ily’s po­si­tion at the cen­tre of 20th-cen­tury Euro­pean his­tory.

Also bound to garner much at­ten­tion is Rebel (Wil­liam Mor­row), a tell-all mem­oir by the great Hol­ly­wood en­fant ter­ri­ble and squan­dered tal­ent, Nick Nolte. A busy month for non-fic­tion, this. De­clan Lynch (of this parish) has be­come one of the fore­most com­men­ta­tors deal­ing with the in­sid­i­ous and ru­inous ad­dic­tion of gam­bling.

In Tony Ten (Gill Books), he teams up with one Tony O’reilly, a post­mas­ter who swiped €1.75m from An Post to fuel his gam­bling. This tale has the look of an eye-wa­ter­ing real-life ca­per — but Lynch can al­ways be trusted to weave in hard truths about this ad­dic­tion’s in­her­ent poi­son.

An­other mat­ter we must face up to is the hor­rors of the Tuam Moth­ers and Ba­bies Home.

Help­ing to lance the boil will be The Great Shame (Gill Books), in which Ali­son O’reilly — the first jour­nal­ist to write about the dis­cov­er­ies there — re­lates the night­mare through the eyes of shunned sin­gle mother, Brid­get Dolan.

Two Sis­ters (Lit­tle, Brown) will see Nor­we­gian war cor­re­spon­dent Asne Seier­stad re­late the story of 19-yearold Ayan Juma and her 16-year-old sis­ter, Leila, who left their Oslo home in 2013 to travel to Syria, spark­ing a pan­icked search by their fa­ther.

Rev­o­lu­tion­ar­ies of a dif­fer­ent kind crop up in War and Rev­o­lu­tion in the West of Ire­land: Gal­way, 1913–1922 (Mer­rion Press), Conor Mcna­mara’s new ex­am­i­na­tion of how the coun­try’s west­ern re­gions dealt with the fall­out from the vio-

Clock­wise from top left, Joanne Lip­man, Rose Mcgowan, De­clan Lynch and above, Brent Pope

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