Bryan Gallagher s reminiscences of the Ireland of his youth, first heard on Radio 4 s Home Truths , transport you to a world of boyhood pranks, playground politics and the confusion of growing up in a land that is every bit as magical and captivating as the stories he has to tell Barefoot in Mullyneeny is Bryan Gallagher s evocative tale of a childhood remembered through the people and landscape of Fermanagh, near the beautiful shores of Lough Erne in Ireland Bryan chronicles a time when all the big boys went to school in bare feet and secretly watched the Saturday night bands and dances in halls lit by Tilley lamps where it was known to be nothing less than the biblical truth that if you put a horse hair across the palm of your hand when you were about to be punished at school, the cane would split in two Gallagher s writing will touch the hearts of those who long for the innocence of childhood and the simplicity of an era long past Whether relating tales of murderous bicycle chases through the darkened streets of Cavan, of ghosts and fairy forts or the anguish of emigration, this remarkable memoir vividly recreates life in rural Ireland in the 1940s and 50s For those who thought that life in Ireland was one of the poverty and misery of James Joyce or Frank McCourt, Barefoot in Mullyneeny offers a view of the Ireland of yesteryear that combines the touching, homely nostalgia of Nigel Slater s Toast and Laurie Lee s Cider with Rosie with a humorous optimism that is unmistakably Ireland at its best....
|Title||:||Barefoot in Mullyneeny: A Boy's Journey Towards Belonging|
|Publisher||:||HarperCollins UK First Edition edition October 1, 2006|
|Number of Pages||:||234 pages|
|File Size||:||994 KB|
|Status||:||Available For Download|
|Last checked||:||21 Minutes ago!|
Barefoot in Mullyneeny: A Boy's Journey Towards Belonging Reviews
This is no ordinary memoir, but a collection of extraordinary tales of a boy's life during the 1940s and 50s in County Fermanagh, Northern Ireland, a trove of stories that tugs at readers' heartstrings. A fine writer, Gallagher captures quintessential Ireland as few other authors do. Readers learn of his adventures as a wee lad in Catholic schools and his countrymen's love of music and dancing, as well as his neighbor's foibles. He also describes lively American wakes held for departing emigrants, in which my own ancestors participated. In the book's introduction, he writes that "among the fields and the streets where you grew up, there your spirit will always live. And there you will leave it when you die." This book is a loving tribute to his people, its message spanning generations and nations.
As one grows older an appreciation of the past grows. Customs and traditions dismissed by the young man are embraced new. Words and phrases not heard for thirty years cause a shiver of recognition. In an uncertain world we look backwards for the certainties of our youth. In a fractured society, we realise that we are not, in fact, isolated individuals but an amalgam of our family and the place we were born. In short, we feel a need to belong.