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Say Nothing: A True Story of Murder and Memory in Northern Ireland
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January 2020: Thriller > Say Nothing/Keefe - 5 stars

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Anita Pomerantz | 6644 comments For the record, I would not classify this book as a thriller (and it wasn't my thriller read), but a good number of people tagged it that way, so putting it in this folder in hopes that more people learn about/consider reading this book.

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What an impressive piece of narrative non-fiction! Honestly, I do think the marketing is clever, but a little disingenuous. But hey, if it takes a murder mystery to sell an important, extremely well researched book about The Troubles in Ireland, than so be it.

Keefe smartly conveys the angst and horror of the times by focusing on 4-5 key player and revealing their stories to the reader slowly. Simultaneously, he weaves in a true crime tale focused on the kidnapping and murder of Jean McConville, mother of ten. Keefe deftly weaves all these strands into a cohesive whole that is quite interesting and extremely educational. For me, it was a bit more of the latter than the former, but that might be because I have no Irish background myself.

The title, "Say Nothing" is really, really apt. People who spoke out were often executed, and yet, a number of key players ultimately provided personal histories to a research effort initiated by Boston College. Depending on your perspective, fortunately or unfortunately, these personal histories end up being exploited years later . . .and it does make one wonder how the historical truths will ever really be preserved in this day and age of litigation.

All in all, while this book is NOT a light read, and it took me awhile to finish . . .it was totally worth the effort. Satisfying from start to finish.


message 2: by Meli (new)

Meli (melihooker) | 3483 comments This is getting so many awards and nominations for awards. Very interested in this book, just a matter of when I could get to it.


Joanne (joabroda1) | 8094 comments I have this on my TBR and you have just doubled my "want to read now" anxiety..unfortunately I think I am #9 in the wait list. Glad to see a review of it that makes the waiting worthwhile.


message 4: by Susie (new) - added it

Susie | 4488 comments A glowing review from Anita equals an automatic addition to my TBR. Thanks!


Susan Lewallen (susanlewallen) | 576 comments Thanks for this thoughtful review. I've been on the wait list for a while and am eager to read it!


message 6: by forsanolim (new) - added it

forsanolim | 485 comments This was on my library's list of "outstanding nonfiction books of 2019," and I'm definitely hoping to get to it pretty soon!


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