City of Books is a podcast in which host, author and journalist Martina Devlin, talks books to all sorts of people who believe books matter – and that you can never have too many books.
It’s sponsored by Dublin UNESCO City of Literature in association with MOLI, the Museum of Literature Ireland. Book-lovers featured in early episodes include writer Marian Keyes on her eagerly-awaited new novel Grown Ups, artist Robert Ballagh and High Court president Judge Peter Kelly.
In the first episode, Robert Ballagh talks about why Samuel Beckett thought the artist was keeping him waiting for breakfast, how his postage stamp design infuriated Northern Irish political leader the Rev Ian Paisley, and his experience of ending up on the wrong side of Britain’s Prince Philip. He also discusses his autography A Reluctant Memoir, published by Head of Zeus
Later in the episode, writer Mary Costello takes a tour of the iconic James Joyce Tower in Dublin where Joyce set the opening chapter of his masterpiece Ulysses. During her walkabout in the 200-year-old building, she describes how she is drawn back again and again to Joyce’s work and why her latest novel The River Capture is inspired by him.
And in a forthcoming episode, UCD academic Professor Margaret Kelleher tells the story of a notorious nineteenth century miscarriage of justice, in which men who spoke only Irish were condemned to death after a trial conducted in English. Her book exploring the subject is The Maamtrasna Murders and she’s interviewed in the historic setting of Dublin’s Green Street Courthouse where the men were tried.