IrishCentral’s Book Club pick for March 2019 is “Strumpet City” by James Plunkett
Welcome to the very special St Patrick’s Day edition of the IrishCentral book club! This month, we decided to look back to a classic Irish book you may not yet have had the chance to read, picking up “Strumpet City” by James Plunkett as March’s top choice.
With a new book announcement on the first day of each month, stay with us throughout the month as we talk to the authors and give you a chance to discuss some great Irish works.
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If you have any further comments, questions for the author or recommendations for a future IrishCentral Book of the Month, you can email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
IrishCentral’s March Book of the Month: “Strumpet City”
Author/Editor: James Plunkett
Publisher: Gill Books
Synopsis: Centring on the seminal lockout of 20,000 workers in Dublin in 1913, Strumpet City by Irish writer James Plunkett encompasses a wide sweep of city life.
From the destitution of "Rashers" Tierney, the poorest of the poor, to the solid, aspirant respectability of Fitz and Mary, the priestly life of Father O’Connor, and the upper-class world of Yearling and the Bradshaws, it paints a portrait of a city of stark contrasts, with an urban working class mired in vicious poverty.
Strumpet City is much more than a book about the Lockout. Through the power of vivid fiction, we encounter all the complexities of humanity. The brilliant and much-loved TV series, originally screened by RTÉ, Ireland's national broadcaster, in 1980, is fondly remembered by many but to read the book is to immerse yourself in social and historical writing akin to Chekhov and Tolstoy.
Strumpet City is the great, sweeping Irish historical novel of the 20th century.
About the author: The late James Plunkett drew on his city-center working-class background, and his commitment to the labor movement, as the background for his fiction. Strumpet City is acknowledged as his masterpiece. His other novels include Farewell Companions and The Circus Animals. He was an accomplished short-story writer and also wrote for radio and theatre.