The unwomanly face of war

translated into English by Richard Pevear and Larissa Volokhonsky When I saw this mentioned in some magazine or other I had to order it. I was vaguely aware of the Russian front during World War II, vaguely aware that women signed up and fought for Soviet Russia, but I knew very little more than that. […]

Old ways old secrets : Pagan Ireland: myth landscape tradition

I requested this from the library because I came across it on @Justaddbooks’ twitter feed and it looked interesting. I think that I should have read the full blurb before I started the book though, because I thought it was about the ancient Irish ways. And it is, but, well I’ll copy & paste the […]

Women & power

Hearing the latest sex abuse scandal or the latest supposedly feminist man revealed as a jerk using his power and position for sexual gain can sometimes make consuming the news feel like a punch to the gut. But, as I tell myself again and again, the fact that these stories are coming out and being […]

part of the cover image to Why dinosaurs matter by Kenneth J. Lacovara. A pixelated dinosaur on a reg background

Why dinosaurs matter

I was never one of those children who was majorly into dinosaurs, but I do remember a reading a few books as a kid. I can still remember the illustrations in the Ladybird book of dinosaurs that we had. Of course, all those old Ladybird books had wonderful illustrations so maybe it had more to […]

H is for hawk

I added this book to my TBR pile way back when it won the Costa Book of the Year award. That was in January 2015, so it has taken me more than two years to get to it. But get to it I did. And it is simply wonderful. Such a great book, I cannot […]

The serpent and the goddess

Using Ireland as a case study, this book provides an account of the decline of matriarchal power in Western civilizations and analyzes its implications for today’s women and today’s Catholic Church. From the age of Eve to the age of Brigit to the age of Mary, the author traces the rise of patriarchial consciousness. Mary […]

The diaries of Nella Last : writing in war & peace

This collection brings together into a single volume the best of Nella Last’s prolific outpourings, including a great deal of new, unpublished material from the war years. Capturing the everyday trials and horrors of wartime Britain and the nation’s transition into peacetime and beyond, Nella’s touching and often humorous narrative provides an invaluable historical portrait […]

The curious history of Irish dogs

There are nine breeds of dog that are native to Ireland: four terriers, three gun dogs, and two hounds. In The Curious History of Irish Dogs, David Blake Knox tells the remarkable stories of each of the nine breeds, and reveals how they have become inextricably linked with the people of Ireland. Irish Wolfhounds stalked […]

Testosterone Rex : unmaking the myths of our gendered minds

Rec’d back in Feb by Aarti on Twitter. Testosterone Rex brings together evolutionary science, psychology, neuroscience and social history to move beyond old ‘nature versus nurture’ debates, and to explain why it’s time to unmake the tyrannical myth of Testosterone Rex. (Testosterone Rex: Unmaking the Myths of Our Gendered Minds on Goodreads) I read Fine’s […]

The truth about stories

From what I remember I bought this book a few years ago because of Aarti’s A More Diverse Universe reading challenge. I didn’t get around to reading it then, but for some reason it popped out at me when I went to shelve a different book. So I picked it up and started reading. It […]

The History Thieves : secrets, lies and the shaping of a modern nation

In 1889, the first Official Secrets Act was passed and created offences of ‘disclosure of information’ and ‘breach of official trust’. It limited and monitored what the public could, and should, be told. Since then, Britain’s governments and civil service have been engaged in the greatest identity fraud of all time – the dishonest and […]

The Girl who beat isis

In August 2014, Farida, like any ordinary teenage girl, was enjoying the summer holidays before her last year at school. But Farida lived in the mountains of northern Iraq — and what happened next was unimaginable. Her village was an ISIS target. In Ireland we forget sometimes just how good we have it. Reading this […]