Say Nothing

Say Nothing

A True Story of Murder and Memory in Northern Ireland

Book - 2019
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"A stunning, intricate narrative about a notorious killing in Northern Ireland and its devastating repercussions. In December 1972, Jean McConville, a thirty-eight-year-old mother of ten, was dragged from her Belfast home by masked intruders, her children clinging to her legs. They never saw her again. Her abduction was one of the most notorious episodes of the vicious conflict known as The Troubles. Everyone in the neighborhood knew the I.R.A. was responsible. But in a climate of fear and paranoia, no one would speak of it. In 2003, five years after an accord brought an uneasy peace to Northern Ireland, a set of human bones was discovered on a beach. McConville's children knew it was their mother when they were told a blue safety pin was attached to the dress."--
Publisher: New York :, Doubleday,, [2019]
ISBN: 9780385521314
Branch Call Number: 364.1523092 KE
Characteristics: xii, 441 pages : illustrations ; 24 cm


From Library Staff

If you like: True crime and history writing. Documents the abduction and murder of IRA Troubles victim Jean McConville in 1972 Belfast, exploring how the case reflected the brutal conflicts of Northern Ireland and their ongoing repercussions. One of One of NPR's Maureen Corrigan's Best Books Of 2... Read More »

Say Nothing is a compelling account of The Troubles-- the violent sectarian strife that erupted in Northern Ireland in the late 1960s. It's equal parts murder mystery, thriller, history, and group biography of major and minor players. It stands out from other accounts because Keefe doesn't take s... Read More »

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multcolib_susannel Apr 09, 2020

The author weaves personal stories and testimony with the facts of the 'Time of Troubles' in Northern Ireland, 1968-1998.

JCLMeghanF Mar 26, 2020

This is true crime journalism at its best. Not only does Keefe present a nuanced view of the Troubles, he also uncovers a possible killer involved in one of Northern Ireland's most notorious unsolved murders.

Mar 14, 2020

Barack Obama Recommendation

Mar 02, 2020

The best cataloguing of the oral history that weaves narration and lived experiences together to both illustrate the times but also connect individuals stories

Feb 03, 2020

March book

Jan 13, 2020

NYT 2019 Top 10

Nov 24, 2019

New York Times Top 10 Books of 2019.

Masked intruders dragged Jean McConville, a 38-year-old widow and mother of 10, from her Belfast home in 1972. In this meticulously reported book — as finely paced as a novel — Keefe uses McConville’s murder as a prism to tell the history of the Troubles in Northern Ireland. Interviewing people on both sides of the conflict, he transforms the tragic damage and waste of the era into a searing, utterly gripping saga.

Nov 24, 2019

On Best Books of 2019 NYT list

Nov 02, 2019

Suzanne book club pick

Oct 10, 2019

I was in Ireland in August, about 6 weeks ago, on a guided bus tour of the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland. Our bus driver was also the tour guide, and was a man who had been actively involved in the Troubles, and spent 3 years in jail as one of the “blanket men”. He taught all of us a lot about what had gone on, from both points of view. He took us to see the peace walls and I wrote my message on a wall there as thousands had before me. He referenced this book, and while it includes some of the terrorism on the part of the IRA it barely acknowledges terrorism on the part of the loyalists, or on the part of soldiers. The book was not meant to be only about Jean McConville, but also about other major figures during those years. My parents were born and raised in Belfast, and our family lived there for a short time. I felt first-hand as a child the tensions between Catholics and Protestants in 1961-63 when I lived there, and six weeks ago, felt it again in Belfast, and in Derry. I think the book captures the huge divide, still present in the form of flags that are flown to identify whether a person is in a Protestant or Catholic neighbourhood. The tensions are alive and well, and as was stated by an IRA member in the book, I think they “have never gone away.” I worry about what will happen regarding borders as a result of Brexit.

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