Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Four of the greatest alternative Irish writers

Max McGuinness, a columnist at The Dubliner, named four unjustly overlooked Irish writers for The Daily Beast.

One author on the list:
Gene Kerrigan

Whereas Julian Gough has scoured the underbelly of the Celtic Tiger for laughs, Gene Kerrigan writes grimly realistic crime novels on the same theme. An experienced investigative journalist, Kerrigan nevertheless seems to have reserved his greatest exposés for novels like The Midnight Choir and Little Criminals, whose engrossing mastery of the sordid detail of underworld life is on a par with that of The Wire.

Kerrigan is even beginning to show signs of developing his fiction into a powerful social critique, with echoes of Dashiell Hammett. Last year’s Dark Times in the City expertly captures the anomie of life in a contemporary Dublin scarred by rampant property speculation and social breakdown. As the country faces what many are already calling a “lost decade,” thanks to perhaps the worst economic crisis of any Western country, it is unlikely that Kerrigan will find himself short of material any time soon.
Read about another writer on McGuinness' list.

Also see Frank Delaney's top 10 Irish novels, Foyles' top 10 list of contemporary Irish novels, Brian McGilloway's top ten modern Irish crime novels, and Declan Burke's top ten list of Irish crime fiction.

--Marshal Zeringue