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In a follow up to our previous episode Claire delves deeper into Jane Harper’s “Force of Nature”, which was the focus of Clonmel Library’s recent virtual Book Club. Aaron Falk and his partner Carmen Cooper investigate the disappearence of a crucial witness.

In this episode Stephanie takes on two novels by Jane Harper featuring Australian Federal Agent Aaron Falk. In the first book “The Dry” Falk returns to his hometown for the funeral of a childhood friend while in the second novel “Force of Nature” he investigates the disappearance of a woman after a company team-building exercise goes awry. Push play to see what Stephanie thought.

A quarter century of episodes and we hadn’t done a short story collection but this is remedied as Claire explores “How to Pronounce Knife” by Canadian poet and short story writer Souvankham Thammavongsa. Her tales reflect her identity as a Laos refugee and immigrant examining feelings of foreignness and loneliness. Listen to the episode to discover more.

Historical fiction is the genre of choice for this week’s podcast which is great because it’s one of Stephanie’s favourites. Kate Mosse’s “The Burning Chamber” has all you could ask for; betrayal, divided loyalties, spies, murder, sedition, persecution but best of all this 16th Century set opus has some really great characters. Give a listen and find out more.

On this instalment of the podcast Claire picks two non-fiction titles that focus on Irish nature and wildlife. Dara McAnulty, a 14 year old who writes with the skill of someone much older, shares his thoughts about and observations on the natural world in “Diary of a Young Naturalist”. Sunday Times nature columnist Jane Powers’ “An Irish Nature Year” is a book you can dip in and out of throughout the seasons.

The Clonmel Library Bookclub had their first ever Online meeting and “Dear Mrs. Bird” by A.J. Pearce was the subject of their discussions. Stephanie relates what the group thought as well as her own feelings on a book that it took her a while to warm to.

Claire turns her attention to Irish Crime for this installment of the podcast wherein she reviews “The Ruin”, the debut novel from Dervla McTiernan. This intriguing thriller sees Cormac Reilly, a Garda detective, drawn back into the life of a family he first encountered at the start of his career.

Stephanie delves into the world of the modern Gothic Thriller and attempts to uncover what it is that gives this genre its particular tone and feeling by reviewing “The Stranger Diaries” by Elly Griffiths and “Pine” by Francine Toon.


To celebrate St. Patrick’s Day Claire has decided to highlight two novels by Irish writers. The first, “This is Happiness” by Niall Williams, is one of the most joyfully Irish books she has read in a long time. The second is “Leonard and Hungry Paul” by Rónán Hession. Both books portray a simpler, slower way of life with characters that wouldn’t be out of place in each others’ locales.


For the week that’s in it, and that week is Seachtain na Gaeilge, Stephanie decides to take on two Irish non-fiction titles. The books in question, “The Place We Call Home” by John Creedon and “Thirty Two Words for Field” by Manchán Magan, have a shared passion for the roots of names and their attendant folklore.

For Episode 17 of the Podcast Claire celebrates St. David’s day by turning her attention to Welsh writer Cynan Jones. She discovers he’s a master minimalist who always gets the most out of the least!

This week on the Podcast Stephanie explores bestselling author Matt Haig’s latest novel “The Midnight Library”. Telling the story of Nora Seed it examines the nature of regret and interrogates what makes a life well lived.

On our special Valentine’s episode Claire gives her take on the original and thought provoking “Love and Other Thought Experiments” by Sophie Ward. She also offers a frank assessment of “The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo” which sees a fictional Hollywood icon being interviewed by a staffer from a top selling glossy magazine.

Hearts Love

This week Stephanie follows up on a recommendation from Jessica, one of Clonmel library’s book club members. “The Salt Path” tells the story of Raynor Winn and her husband moth, a couple who are rendered homeless just when a tragic medical diagnosis is revealed. They decide a 630 mile walk from Somerset to Dorset is the best remedy.

This week on the Podcast Claire, and her father, are both entranced by Ann Napolitano’s new novel “Dear Edward” which is partly inspired by the Afriqiyah Airways Flight 771 disaster.

Stephanie talks about “French Exit” by Patrick DeWitt (author of the highly lauded neo-western “The Sisters Brothers”) and how it helped her to alleviate the lockdown blues.

It’s Australia Day on January 26th and, to celebrate, Claire takes a look at a selection of books by Kate Grenville. Included are “The Lieutenant”, “The Secret River” and the Orange Prize winning “The Idea of Perfection”.

For our first episode of 2021 Stephanie delves into Helen Cullen’s new novel “The Truth Must Dazzle Gradually”, a modern exploration of the family saga that takes the reader on an immersive journey through the human condition.

In the second part of our annual review Claire looks back at the titles she read during 2020. Inlcuded in her list are genre fiction, short story collections and non-fiction so have a listen and see what grabs your fancy!

Stephanie rounds out the year with a look back at all the titles she read during 2020. So why not grab a cup of tea, settle down and hear what her favourite reads of the past year were – you might find something that tickles your interest!

It’s all a little bit festive on the podcast this week as Claire tackles “Christmas Shopaholic” by Sophie Kinsella while Stephanie goes rogue and shares her thoughts on “The Absolution” by Yrsa Siggurdadottir.


On Episode 6 of the podcast we delve into “Oldies but Goodies”. For her pick Stephanie has gone for “The Bell Jar” by Sylvia Plath. Claire turns her attention to “Mrs. Palfrey at the Claremont” by Elizabeth Taylor.


This week on the podcast we have a pair of really interesting non-fiction titles. First off Stephanie takes a look at “Murder Most Florid” by Dr. Mark Spencer. After that Claire gives her take on “A Life on Our Planet” by David Attenborough.


This week’s episode focusses on the literature of East Asia. Stephanie’s selection is “Before the Coffee Gets Cold” by Toshikazu Kawaguchi while Claire discusses “In Order to Live” by Yeonmi Park with special guest Tom.


This week on the Book Review Podcast our attention turns to Irish authors as Stephanie and Claire check out “Strange Flowers” by Donal Ryan and “The Pull of the Stars” by Emma Donoghue.


It’s “Crime Week” on the Book Review Podcast so why not listen to what Claire and Stephanie thought of “#taken” by Tony Parsons and “Inherit the Bones” by Emily Littlejohn.


Join Stephanie and Claire for their new Book Review Podcast. In their opening episode they discuss two of the biggest books of 2020 – Jeanine Cummin’s ‘American Dirt’ and Delia Owen’s ‘Where the Crawdads Sing.’

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