1999: A Novel of the CelticTiger and the Search for Peace
The Irish Century concludes in this climactic novel; Llywelyn's masterpiece is complete
The Irish Century series is the story of the Irish people's epic struggle for independence through the tumultuous course of the twentieth century. Morgan Llywelyn's magisterial multi-novel chronicle of that story began with 1916, which was followed by 1921, 1949, and 1972. It now concludes with 1999: A Novel of the Celtic Tiger and the Search for Peace. 1999 brings the story from 1972 to the disarmament talks and beginnings of reconciliation among the Irish at the end of the twentieth century.
Barry Halloran, strong, clever, and passionately patriotic, who was the central character of 1972, remains central. 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.
The Irish Century Novels
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It would help if the facts were correct. The author refers to the purchase of the freehold of part of the GPO site from the state of George Pentland, an Englishman. He was an Irishman who had chosen to live in England. In making this ill-researched claim alongside his comments on hunger-striker Bobby Sands he ignores the complete intermixing of Scots, Irish and English which make such a statement fatuous. Not that I would subscribe to the claim made by one infamous American commentator that both Sands and Adams are descended from Irish Scots. It may be true but is equally discredited by his claim that Sands family were English until the fourteenth century. Unless they were a powerful and rich family the chances of any substantial proof of this claim being available are virtually nil. Pentland's family, however, were rich and fairly powerful in Ireland. They were undoubtedly of Scots ancestry but can be traced with certainty only to the mid eighteenth century. Branches of the family were Scots Presbyterian, other Roman Catholic and the one in question Church of Ireland.
What actually matters is the fiction that the Irish government had purchased something stolen by the English. In fact the Pentland family purchased that land while the government in Ireland was independent under the British crown.