St. Patrick’s Day Reads

Happy St. Patrick’s Day! What pot-of-gold books would you want to find at the end of the rainbow? See our titles below! 


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If Tenderness be Gold

(Latitude 46)

About the book: If Tenderness Be Gold is set in 19th-century and early 20th-century northern Ontario and Manitoba. An Irish mother, an Italian herbalist, and a Scottish midwife come together on the night of a difficult birth, and the result of their union has effects that echo through the generations.

Find it on All Lit Up.


A Ghost in the Throat


About the book: When we first met, I was a child, and she had been dead for centuries.On discovering her murdered husband’s body, an eighteenth-century Irish noblewoman drinks handfuls of his blood and composes an extraordinary lament. Eibhlín Dubh Ní Chonaill’s poem travels through the centuries, finding its way to a new mother who has narrowly avoided her own fatal tragedy. When she realizes that the literature dedicated to the poem reduces Eibhlín Dubh’s life to flimsy sketches, she wants more: the details of the poet’s girlhood and old age; her unique rages, joys, sorrows, and desires; the shape of her days and site of her final place of rest. What follows is an adventure in which Doireann Ní Ghríofa sets out to discover Eibhlín Dubh’s erased life—and in doing so, discovers her own.Moving fluidly between past and present, quest and elegy, poetry and those who make it, A Ghost in the Throat is a shapeshifting book: a record of literary obsession; a narrative about the erasure of a people, of a language, of women; a meditation on motherhood and on translation; and an unforgettable story about finding your voice by freeing another’s.

Find it on All Lit Up.

Where, the Mile End

(Book*Hug Press)

About the book: Where, the Mile End, Irish poet Julie Morrissy’s debut collection, embodies an energetic lyricism that whips through Europe and North America with humour, curiosity and a distinct edginess. Morrissy’s lines track emotional, physical, and geographical change, as she intimately links the vitality of two continents: the snow, the streets, the sensual memories. Where, the Mile End reimagines the places we inhabit, the moments we remember, the things we long for.

Find it on All Lit Up.


Martin John 


About the book: Martin John’s mam says that she is glad he is done with it. But is Martin John done with it? He says he wants it to stop, his mother wants it to stop, we all want it to stop. But is it really what Martin John wants? He had it in his mind to do it and he did it. Harm was done when he did it. Harm would continue to be done. Who will stop Martin John? Will you stop him? Should she stop him?From Anakana Schofield, the brilliant author of the bestselling Malarky, comes a darkly comic novel circuiting through the mind, motivations and preoccupations of a character many women have experienced but few have understood quite so well. The result confirms Schofield as one of the bravest and most innovative authors at work in English today.

Find it on All Lit Up.


The Moosehead Anthology 12

(DC Books)

About the book: This collection is the first anthology of Irish-Canadian literature ever to appear, and brings together a representative selection of Irish-Canadian writing drawn both from neglected early sources and from the exciting range of Irish-Canadian writing in more recent and contemporary Canadian literature. The first section of the anthology provides writing that taken together provides real insight into the lives, attitudes, and concerns of the early generations of Irish Canada. Rare accounts of the reception in Quebec of the distressed famine orphans of the late 1840s, fiction from immigrants written on the Canadian Northwest, poetry, including selections by the great Irish-Canadian statesman Thomas D’Arcy McGee, and autobiographical accounts by Irish travelers, missionaries and Irish-Canadian soldiers who served in the Crimea, in India, during the Fenian raids, and in the Northwest during the Riel rebellions. The latter section of A Message to Eire anthologizes the works of the descendents of the earlier Irish settlers, and documents the exciting and important contribution of Irish-Canada to the literary history of the country. Including works by both 20th-century and contemporary Irish-Canadian authors from Quebec, the Atlantic provinces, and from further west, the anthology aims at providing an excellent representative sample of Irish-Canadians to Canadian and world literature.

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The Inward Journey

(Breakwater Books)

About the book: Sylvia Bolfe sits in her nursing home, criticizes the food and the staff—all but her trusted confidant and registered nurse, Eleanor—and with humour and feistiness recounts her turbulent life. From an upper-class Irish family, Sylvia marries a young medical student beneath her station and leaves Ireland for Newfoundland. When her husband unexpectedly dies, she is left with the children to make her own way. As in Atwood’s The Blind Assassin, Evans spins a spirited, funny, no-nonsense narrative in the voice of an unforgettable narrator.

Find it on All Lit Up.

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