Friday 7 June 2024

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My Book Love For Patrick MacDonald’s Darkness Falling


Book Review by Soulla Christodoulou

Hello and welcome to this week’s Book Review post on a wonderfully evocative read called Darkness Falling by indie author Ian MacDonald.

Have you ever picked up a book already dreading reading it because of the subject matter and yet despite the horror of the unfolding story you keep turning the pages?

This is one of those books…

The subject matter is raw, upsetting in more places than I want to recall and yet it was a page-turner which kept me reading with hope in my heart even though I knew what was coming.

The potato famine of Ireland is a well-known part of history and I have visited the Kilmainham Gaol going back a few years and the place still haunts me.

Reading this novel felt just and worthwhile and as a teacher and lover of literature I think it should certainly be in every school library across the UK and beyond.

MacDonald writes with a rawness, catching the emotions and suffering of the Irish people while sharing a part of history which deserves a place in the literary world.

His characters drew me in and had me rooting for them and their families at every turn. To say this was an enjoyable read is not true… it was deeply disturbing yet incredibly evocative and beautifully written.

I liked the way the historical context was woven into the narrative with authentic references of the time quoted  between chapters and just as I couldn’t bear what was happening there was a brilliant court scene which had me on tenterhooks and got me through the final pages.

Congratulations to MacDonald on a fabulous Indie-published book.

Darkness Falling  I feel certain will go far in the book world and would make a great book club read as well.

MacDonald has been married for 40 years and has two grown-up sons.

He published Darkness Falling, his second novel, about the Irish Famine, two years ago.

He says, “It was a labour of love and took me a long time to write. Both my parents are Irish, so this subject has a particular resonance for me. It combines the story of a family affected by the famine, an exploration of the politics of the period, and the British government’s disastrous policies in managing the crisis.”

I hope you’ll give it a go and please look out for his wonderful author interview with me in A Cup of Conversation in a couple of weeks.

Thank you for joining me and until next time

Happy Reading, Happy Writing, Happy You.

With much love, Soulla xxx

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