Richard O'Rawe answers thirteen questions in a Booker's Dozen. 

TPQ:
What are you currently reading?

ROR: At the minute I'm reading The New Jim Crow by Michelle Alexander. It's a exposé of racial inequality in twenty-first century America. A disturbing but great read.

TPQ: Best and worst books you have ever read?

ROR: Such a question! There are a raft of best books ... Shane 🔖 Trinity 🔖 Bring Up The Bodies 🔖 The Singing Flame. I am loathe to criticise other authors but I found Chris Ryder's Inside The Maze a poor reflection of what was happening in the H-Blocks during the 1980s.

TPQ: Book most cherished as a child?

ROR: Has to be The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain. My dad brought me to see the film in The Broadway Picture House and I've been a Twain fan ever since. I mean, I was in that raft with Huck and Jim the Slave as they headed down the Mississippi River, without a care in the world. What a book! What character creation!

TPQ: Favourite Childhood author?

ROR: it's a toss-up between Robert Louis Stephenson and Mark Twain. I was as much taken with Long John Silver and young Jim Hawkins as I was by Huck Finn and Tom Sawyer.

TPQ: First book to really own you?

ROR: The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn.



TPQ: Favourite male and female author?

ROR: A difficult one. I think my favourite male author would have to be Leon Uris. Exodus and Trinity made life considerably more bearable in jail. We even got a delightful double dose of Trinity, when Bobby Sands so skillfully told the story out the door of his H-Block cell to the rest of us on the wing. My favourite female author would have to be Hilary Mantel. I love historical novels and her descriptive prowess is nothing short of masterful.

TPQ: A preference for fact or fiction?

ROR: It doesn't matter. I like both fact and fiction in equal measure.

TPQ: Biography, autobiography or memoir that most impressed you?

ROR: I thought The Singing Flame, and On Another Man's Wounds by Ernie O'Malley were hugely impressive works.

TPQ: Any author or book you point blank refuse to read?

ROR: I could be churlish here and name an individual, but I won't.

TPQ: A book to share with somebody so that they would more fully understand you?

ROR: A hell of a question! I'm not sure I understand me! It would probably have to be Blanketmen, wouldn't it?

TPQ: Last book you gave as a present?

ROR: My Life in Loyalism: Billy Hutchinson with Gareth Mulvenna.

TPQ: Book you would most like to see turned into a movie?

ROR: There are several, all written by the same author (I was tempted to put in 'the same handsome devil of an author' but I never give way to temptation, as well you know, Mackers). Really though, I'd love to see In the Name of the Son: The Gerry Conlon Story on the big screen. Martin Lynch and I have converted the book into a dynamic stage play (we couldn't really go wrong, such was the diversity of Gerry's life after prison. Now the plug ... the play will be on in The Lyric later this year). But really, it's such a fulsome story, it needs a big screen. It will be made.

TPQ: The just must - select one book you simply have to read before you close the last page on life.

ROR: Has to be Ulysses by Joyce. I've had about four digs at reading it and haven't pulled it off yet. I will conquer Ulysses!

Richard O’Rawe's latest book is Northern Heist, published by Merrion Press.

Booker's Dozen @ Richard O'Rawe

Richard O'Rawe answers thirteen questions in a Booker's Dozen. 

TPQ:
What are you currently reading?

ROR: At the minute I'm reading The New Jim Crow by Michelle Alexander. It's a exposé of racial inequality in twenty-first century America. A disturbing but great read.

TPQ: Best and worst books you have ever read?

ROR: Such a question! There are a raft of best books ... Shane 🔖 Trinity 🔖 Bring Up The Bodies 🔖 The Singing Flame. I am loathe to criticise other authors but I found Chris Ryder's Inside The Maze a poor reflection of what was happening in the H-Blocks during the 1980s.

TPQ: Book most cherished as a child?

ROR: Has to be The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain. My dad brought me to see the film in The Broadway Picture House and I've been a Twain fan ever since. I mean, I was in that raft with Huck and Jim the Slave as they headed down the Mississippi River, without a care in the world. What a book! What character creation!

TPQ: Favourite Childhood author?

ROR: it's a toss-up between Robert Louis Stephenson and Mark Twain. I was as much taken with Long John Silver and young Jim Hawkins as I was by Huck Finn and Tom Sawyer.

TPQ: First book to really own you?

ROR: The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn.



TPQ: Favourite male and female author?

ROR: A difficult one. I think my favourite male author would have to be Leon Uris. Exodus and Trinity made life considerably more bearable in jail. We even got a delightful double dose of Trinity, when Bobby Sands so skillfully told the story out the door of his H-Block cell to the rest of us on the wing. My favourite female author would have to be Hilary Mantel. I love historical novels and her descriptive prowess is nothing short of masterful.

TPQ: A preference for fact or fiction?

ROR: It doesn't matter. I like both fact and fiction in equal measure.

TPQ: Biography, autobiography or memoir that most impressed you?

ROR: I thought The Singing Flame, and On Another Man's Wounds by Ernie O'Malley were hugely impressive works.

TPQ: Any author or book you point blank refuse to read?

ROR: I could be churlish here and name an individual, but I won't.

TPQ: A book to share with somebody so that they would more fully understand you?

ROR: A hell of a question! I'm not sure I understand me! It would probably have to be Blanketmen, wouldn't it?

TPQ: Last book you gave as a present?

ROR: My Life in Loyalism: Billy Hutchinson with Gareth Mulvenna.

TPQ: Book you would most like to see turned into a movie?

ROR: There are several, all written by the same author (I was tempted to put in 'the same handsome devil of an author' but I never give way to temptation, as well you know, Mackers). Really though, I'd love to see In the Name of the Son: The Gerry Conlon Story on the big screen. Martin Lynch and I have converted the book into a dynamic stage play (we couldn't really go wrong, such was the diversity of Gerry's life after prison. Now the plug ... the play will be on in The Lyric later this year). But really, it's such a fulsome story, it needs a big screen. It will be made.

TPQ: The just must - select one book you simply have to read before you close the last page on life.

ROR: Has to be Ulysses by Joyce. I've had about four digs at reading it and haven't pulled it off yet. I will conquer Ulysses!

Richard O’Rawe's latest book is Northern Heist, published by Merrion Press.

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