Read as part of cbr12 bingo: Pandemic! I’ve wanted to read this one for a bit and it doesn’t really fit in any other category.
Few books have had the kind of hype that Say Nothing has been getting the last 12-18 months. It wound up on dozens of “Best Of” lists in 2019. It was recommended by Barack Obama. Friends who read it gushed about it. Given that’s a history tale (yes) about a subject I know little about but am curious of (uh-huh), I knew it would be one I had to get to sooner than later.
And yeah, it’s as great as advertised. Maybe even better. Unquestionably, one of the best non-fiction books I’ve read.
I’ll say less about the content, this isn’t fiction and I’m not knowledgable enough about the Troubles and the history of Northern Ireland, to talk about the writing. Patrick Radden Keefe writes a non-fiction tale exactly how I (and apparently many others) want. Smooth writing, well-informed but not bogged down by detail, giving the reader a clear picture of being in that time. This was a book I hated putting down; having to do it mostly for work and personal reasons. I would have gobbled it in a day if I could have.
Keefe does a great job weaving in the mystery that drives the tale through the major players in the IRA. One starts reading feeling bad for the Northern Irish, persecuted under British rule, but are soon reminded that war is indeed hell and that there’s no innocence, no matter how just the cause.
If you’re considering picking this one up, please do. It is an excellent book.