Nick's Reviews > Sun Dancing: Life in a Medieval Irish Monastery and How Celtic Spirituality Influenced the World

Sun Dancing by Geoffrey Moorhouse
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's review
Mar 19, 2012

it was amazing
bookshelves: ireland
Read in March, 2012

Maybe Five Stars is too many for this book. But I really liked how quirky it is. Moorhouse starts out by explaining just how sketchy the information is on his subject, so everything in the book has to be taken with a grain of salt. He then launches you into a series of short stories (yes, complete fiction!) concerning life in an Irish monastary in the sixth through 12th centuries, about one story per century. The second half of the book is a glossary of sorts, 2-5 page essays on a variety of subjects, meant, as the author says, for reflection and meditation more than factual info. It's not a wholly reliable tool for information, but it does whet the appetite so enjoyably that I had fun reading it, and that's the most important thing here. De-romanticising Irish history is difficult, but Moorhouse does it without condescension. --or maybe he does it by over-romanticising, and telling you upfront that this is what he's doing, but that there are kernels of truth in his quest.
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