In her carefully chronicled history of the lead-up and legacy of Bloody Sunday, author and poet Julienann Campbell is an ideal observer.
A former journalist with the local paper of record The Derry Journal - with a poet's eye for the telling detail - Campbell interprets handily between the private and public realms, trusting that the facts when correctly assembled will speak of a place, community, and time with a searing eloquence.
Bloody Sunday's impact on Derry and the North was simply meteoric, and it needs someone who can see beyond the moment-by-moment events of that tragic day to the tangible and intangible shockwaves that it left behind.
Many books have been written about Bloody Sunday by helicopter correspondents, but Campbell is from Derry and directly related to one of the dead (she is the niece of 17-year-old Jackie Duddy, who was the first fatality of Bloody Sunday).
Looking for Irish book recommendations or to meet with others who share your love for Irish literature? Join IrishCentral’s Book Club on Facebook and enjoy our book-loving community.
She is a daughter of the community and culture she so carefully chronicles, she grew up on these eyewitness accounts and the grief that followed.
Although born a few years after the events she documents here, this is more than a recitation in the words of people who were there that day, it's a testament to the community and city that Campbell was raised in and its capacity to endure the unendurable.
Octopus Books, $29.99.