Could an Irish monk in the sixth century really have sailed all the way across the Atlantic in a small open boat, thus beating Columbus to the New World by almost a thousand years? Relying on the medieval text of St. Brendan, award-winning adventure writer Tim Severin painstakingly researched and built a boat identical to the leather curragh that carried Brendan on his epic voyage. He found a centuries-old, family-run tannery to prepare the ox hides in the medieval way; he undertook an exhaustive search for skilled harness makers (the only people who would know how to stitch the three-quarter-inch-thick hides together); he located one of the last pieces of Irish-grown timber tall enough to make the mainmast. But his courage and resourcefulness were truly tested on the open seas, including one heart-pounding episode when he and his crew repaired a dangerous tear in the leather hull by hanging over the side–their heads sometimes submerged under the freezing waves–to restitch the leather. A modern classic in the tradition of Kon-Tiki, The Brendan Voyage seamlessly blends high adventure and historical relevance. It has been translated into twenty-seven languages since its original publication in 1978.
Gatekeepers (The O’Deirg Legacy Book 2)
How do you keep a secret from family? Is there any point in trying? The O’Deirgs must protect their ancient Irish legacy. But with their family growing steadily and Civil War violence creeping closer, their happy life is upended again as lost family returns from America. The Irish Civil War, raging in the cities, now threatens to engulf another family member in it’s terrible struggle. Maybe the blame lies with the local butcher, his shady secrets and his well-spiced sausages, or on the O’Deirgs’ long history, or on the cousins from America, or on the practices of the Church, or on the local Innkeeper’s past, or on the sheep – or maybe not. The Gatekeepers is the sequel to The Red Gate, which introduced the O’Deirg Secret to the world.
Here at last is one Irish family’s epic journey, capturing the tragedy and triumph of the Irish-American experience. In a rousing tale that echoes the myths and legends of Ireland herself, young Honora Keeley and Michael Kelly wed and start a family, inhabiting a hidden Ireland where fishermen and tenant farmers find solace in their ancient faith, songs, stories, and communal celebrations. Selling both their catch–and their crops–to survive, these people subsist on the potato crop–their only staple food. But when blight destroys the potatoes three times in four years, a callous government and uncaring landlords turn a natural disaster into The Great Starvation that will kill one million. Honora and Michael vow their children will live. The family joins two million other Irish refugees in one of the greatest rescues in human history: the Irish Emigration to America. Danger and hardship await them there. Honora and her unconventional sister Maire watch their seven sons as they transform Chicago from a frontier town to the “City of the Century”, fight the Civil War, and enlist in the cause of Ireland’s freedom. The Kelly clan is victorious. This heroic story sheds brilliant light on the ancestors of today’s 44 million Irish Americans.
Lion of Ireland (Brian Boru #1)
King, warrior, and lover Brian Boru was stronger, braver, and wiser than all other men-the greatest king Ireland has ever known. Out of the mists of the country’s most violent age, he merged to lead his people to the peak of their golden era.
His women were as remarkable as his adventures: Fiona, the druidess with mystical powers; Deirdre, beautiful victim of a Norse invader’s brutal lust; Gormlaith, six-foot, read-haired goddess of sensuality.
Set against the barbaric splendors of the tenth century, this is a story rich in truth and legend-in which friends become deadly enemies, bedrooms turn into battlefields, and dreams of glory are finally fulfilled. Morgan Llywelyn has written one of the greatest novels of Irish history
Finn Mac Cool
Somewhere in the shadowy borderland between myth and history lies the territory of Finn Mac Cool, Mightiest of the Irish heroes, leader of the invincible army of Fianna, he was a man of many faces: warrior, poet, lover, creator, destroyer.He had it all and lost it all, but in the end he gained immortality.
Morgan Llywelyn, bestselling author of Lion of Ireland, has enthralled readers with magnificent tales of her native land. Now she has recreated Ireland’s most amazing man in a novel of sweeping historical grandeur and awesome adventure.
“Powerful…Llywelyn has created a lusty, poetic and legendary world”. – The New York Times Book Review on Red Branch
Orange and Green A Tale of the Boyne and Limerick
The Irish Confederacy’s taking of Limerick was made far easier than subsequent attempts by the fact that they had the support of most of the city’s population. About 600 English Protestant settlers had fled to the city to escape the Irish Rebellion of 1641 and had fortified themselves in King John’s Castle in the centre of Limerick. The city was predominantly Catholic and appealed to the new Confederate Catholic government at Kilkenny to capture this Protestant citadel.
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Black Potatoes: The Story of the Great Irish Famine, 1845-1850
In 1845, a disaster struck Ireland. Overnight, a mysterious blight attacked the potato crops, turning the potatoes black and destroying the only real food of nearly six million people.
Over the next five years, the blight attacked again and again. These years are known today as the Great Irish Famine, a time when one million people died from starvation and disease and two million more fled their homeland.
Black Potatoes is the compelling story of men, women, and children who defied landlords and searched empty fields for scraps of harvested vegetables and edible weeds to eat, who walked several miles each day to hard-labor jobs for meager wages and to reach soup kitchens, and who committed crimes just to be sent to jail, where they were assured of a meal. It’s the story of children and adults who suffered from starvation, disease, and the loss of family and friends, as well as those who died. Illustrated with black and white engravings, it’s also the story of the heroes among the Irish people and how they held on to hope.
Hue & Cry (Journeyman #2)
Jared Austin, staunch member of the mutual protection society that defends his 1830s New Hampshire community against thieves, tries to temper justice with mercy when his deaf daughter Melody befriends a young Irish immigrant who has stolen a horse.
Red Hugh: Prince of Donegal (Living History Library)
In 1587, teenaged Hugh Roe O’Donnell, son of the rulers of Donegal, is seized by the English and imprisoned in Dublin Castle for three years before escaping to join in the struggle to rid Ireland of English rule.
Leprechaun in Late Winter (Magic Tree House #43)
Jack and Annie are on their third mission to find (and inspire!) creative people to bring happiness to others through the arts (Mozart and Louis Armstrong so far). Set in Ireland, Jack and Annie meet an Irish girl and go on a magical adventure that changes the girl’s life—she grows up to be Lady Gregory, who helped bring back the Irish legends, started a theater, and helped the Irish people regain both their heritage and their pride.