AOH Div. 61 Reading List




      Bloody Sunday tells the exciting behind-the-scenes story of the events that led up to the operation and gives a completely new appraisal of "the troubles." It shows Michael Collins as the brilliant leader that he was, and it disperses the fables and fiction that have grown up around Ireland's War of Independence.

Tim Pat Coogan


Irish in America

Non Fiction - Local Interest

Murdered by Mumia: A Life Sentence of Loss, Pain and Injustice - by Maureen Faulkner and Michael Smerconish - A must read for anyone from the Philadelphia area that has had to endure the tragic media circus that has given Danny Faulkner's murderer celebrity status. (One of Philadelphia's AOH divisions is named in Officer Faulkner's honor.)

Historical Fiction

Morgan Llywelyn

          The Irish Century Series

  • 1916: A Novel of Irish Rebellion
    Through Ned's eyes, 1916 examines the Irish fight for freedom-inspired by poets and schoolteachers, fueled by a desperate desire for independence, and played out in the historic streets of Dublin against the background of World War I. It is a story of the brave men and heroic women who, for a few unforgettable days, managed to hold out against the might of the British Empire.
  • 1921: The Great Novel of the Irish Civil War, - and the year of the separation of Ireland into two nations, south and north. The central character is Henry Mooney, a journalist (based upon the author’s grandfather), who struggles for truth in his reporting during the terrible conflict, and falls in love with an Englishwoman in Ireland in the midst of political and military horrors.
  • 1949: A Novel of the Irish Free State - tells the story of Ireland's progress as seen through the eyes of one woman, from the bitter aftermath of civil war to the controversial dawn of a modern state. Ursula Halloran, the daughter of a famous revolutionary, comes of age in the turbulent 1920s. An education in Switzerland broadens her world view, but Ireland has become a repressive Catholic state where women are second-class citizens. Married women cannot hold jobs and divorce is illegal.
  • 1972: A Novel of Ireland's Unfinished Revolution - covers the events and social changes of the mid-century in Ireland through the story of the coming-of-age of Barry Halloran, son of Ursula Halloran (the heroine of 1949). Barry moves from patriotic involvement in the IRA, to an aversion to explosives and guns and a career as a photographer, to a final moment of radicalization in the face of the horrifying injustices in Northern Ireland that crystalized on Bloody Sunday in Derry in 1972.
  • 1999: A Novel of the Celtic Tiger and the Search for Peace - follows Barry Halloran, now a crippled photojournalist, he marries his beloved Barbara Kavanaugh, and steps back from the armed struggle. Through his work he documents the historic events that take us from the horrific aftermath of Bloody Sunday through the decades of The Troubles to the present. This is a noble conclusion to an historical mega-novel that will be read for years.

Roddy Doyle

  • A Star Called Henry
  • The Snapper 
  • Oh Play That Thing
  • Paddy Clark Ha-Ha-Ha
  • The Van

Dermot McEvoy

    • Terrible Angel - A Novel of Michael Collins in New York

    Dermot McEvoy's witty, suspenseful, and lightning-paced romp through the streets of New York, finds Collins seventy years after his bloody death desparetly seeking to make amends for his violent life by completing one last worldly mission; springing a wrongly accused Irishman from the clutches of the U.S. Immigration and Naturalization Service, the British MI-5, and a certain life sentence in a British jail.

Tom Kelly

  • Empire Rising
    EMPIRE RISING is a historical novel that, like the construction of the Empire State Building on which it centers, grows on the listener. The story begins slowly as the extensive cast of characters, ranging from Tammany Hall politicos to the gruffest iron workers, is introduced. The book then evolves into both a love story and an intricately drawn political novel.
  • Payback (reprinted as Sandhogs)
    From Library Journal - Kelly uses the cranes that towered over New York during the Reagan-era building boom as a backdrop to his searing tale of greed, corruption, and loyalty. Paddy and Billy Adare are brothers descended from a long line of Irish sandhogs?miners who dig tunnels for cars, subways, and water. After Paddy's boxing career ended due to injury, he turned to crime and became an enforcer for a West Side boss. Billy went to college and is working what he hopes is his last summer as a sandhog before he enters law school. When the sandhogs contract runs out, and powerful contractor Joe Harkness is willing to use extortion, threats, and violence as negotiation tools, Paddy is forced to choose between his profession and his past. The vivid characterizations, crafty pacing, and authentic millieu makes Payback a very impressive debut, despite the race-against-time ending.
  • The Rackets
    The Rackets begins with Jimmy Dolan, the advance man for New York's mayor, knocking down Teamster boss Frankie Keefe at Gracie Mansion. Jimmy's dad, Mike, is running against Keefe for the union's top job, and when Keefe makes a smart remark about that, Jimmy can't help himself. The Mayor, who seems to resemble the present mayor of New York City, fires Jimmy, who finds himself returning to his roots in working class Inwood, where he is reunited with an old girlfriend, police officer Tara O'Neil, and an old high school friend, Liam, a veteran of the Gulf War. Jimmy is soon back in the life he thought he had left behind, trying to help his father break the grip that organized crime has on the union.

Liam O'Flaherty

Leon Uris

  • Trinity
  • Redemption

Myth & Folklore


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This page last updated: 1/25/2013