We all have a need to belong, to have a place and people we feel tied to: our family, our house, our hometown, our nation. Ever since he first visited Ireland with his family twenty years ago, John McCarthy has felt a strong affinity with its people and landscape. Yet in spite of his Irish name, he never thought of himself as remotely Irish.
When McCarthy sets up home in a wild and isolated corner of County Kerry where his ancestors were living a thousand years before, he realises that he is about to undertake not only a journey into that small rural community but also into his own history and his family. What he discovers there reveals a curious sense of belonging to a place he has never before lived in and peels back the emotional layers of his own fractured past.
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'John McCarthy is a good listener, recording with sympathy and humour personal stories as well as Irish history from Celtic times until today. His quest to understand troubled, romantic Ireland and his own relationship with his family has resulted in a beguiling book' - The Sunday Times
'A lively family history... An engaging and delightful book' - Independent on Sunday
'Much more than a personal travelogue through the spectacular scenery of County Kerry, this is also a perceptive and delicate analysis of the Irish situation, a delightful evocation of the open-hearted locals of his adopted village of Ardcanacht and a lively family history. It's told with real affection for the people and places he comes across' - Independent on Sunday
As a journalist in television news John McCarthy was sent on his first foreign assignment to Beirut in 1986 aged twenty-nine. His career was abruptly cut short by militiamen who kidnapped and held him captive for five and half years.
Since his release he has written four books - Some Other Rainbow (with Jill Morrell), about his hostage years, Island Race (with Sandi Toksvig), an account of their circumnavigation of Britain, and Between Extremes (with Brian Keenan), a journey through Chile and his latest, A Ghost Upon Your Path.
John McCarthy continues to work in both radio and television.