Boxer Frances Michael McTigue hailed from Kilnamona, Co. Clare and in 1923, at the height of the Irish Civil War, a bitterly divided people managed to set their differences aside to watch him go 20 rounds before the guns started firing and the bombs started exploding again. It took a particular kind of talent to call a halt to that tragic slaughter, and McTigue was made of the right stuff. Bloody Canvas tells his story, how an underdog became world champion in one of the most bizarre world title fights ever witnessed. McTigue lived a hard but fascinating life, and his story takes us from rural Ireland to Jazz Age New York to the privations of the Great Depression. Gallimore has restored a champion to his pedestal and rescued his reputation from obscurity. Dufour Editions, $26.95.
Why all Irish men’s beards are red