Roundup of the latest and greatest Irish books
Barbieri’s characters are nothing if not memorable, particularly the members of the group that gives the book its title. There’s Bernie, a widow, and Aileen, who seems helpless in the face of her teenage daughter’s growing independence. There’s also Moira, who is trapped in an abusive relationship.
Meanwhile, it just so happens there’s also a fellow Kate meets, an artist, who perhaps could use a lady friend to overcome some of his own past traumas.
The “Lacemakers of Glenmara” is not exactly for everyone. But those who enjoy a colorful romantic yarn will eat it up.
$24.99 / 268 pages / Harper
"A Saint on Death Row" by Thomas Cahill
In 2003, best-selling author Thomas Cahill (“How the Irish Saved Civilization”) was in Texas. A retired Irish Catholic judge named Sheila Murphy recommended he pay a visit to a convicted murderer named Dominique Green. He did not encounter a cold-blooded killer but, instead, what Cahill calls “A Saint on Death Row,” the title of his latest book.
Green was arrested at the age of eighteen following the shooting of a man during a robbery, and was sentenced to the death penalty despite a lack of evidence.
“A Saint on Death Row: The Story of Dominique Green” explores the fight to stop Green’s execution, a fight which included a visit from Archbishop Desmond Tutu. In October of 2004, Green died by lethal injection, but knowing the ending shouldn’t stop you from wanting to read this harrowing piece and find out why.
Cahill outlines the serious flaws and corruption in the American justice system, as well as the spiritual journey undertaken by Green and his many supporters.
$18.95 / 160 pages / Nan A. Talese
“The Fence: A Police Cover-up Along Boston’s Racial Lines" by Dick Lehr
Another miscarriage of justice story is told in “The Fence: A Police Cover-up Along Boston’s Racial Lines.”
At the center of the story in Dick Lehr's latest book is South Boston Irish American cop Kenny Conley. In 1995, several Boston police officers brutally beat a man who they believed to be a gang member. Instead, it was Michael Cox, an undercover African American police officer.
During the beating, Officer Conley captured another suspect, and, so, denied witnessing the actual beating of Cox. Federal prosecutors accused Conley of lying, drawing him into a legal morass which, in Lehr’s mind, exposes huge flaws in the Boston police department. Lehr knows a lot about the ethnic wars and justice system in Boston. He (along with Gerard O’Neill) wrote “Black Mass,” the definitive account of Whitey Bulger and how the Southie Irish gangster manipulated law enforcement and escaped prosecution.
$25 / 383 pages / Harper
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