During the 1970s a group of Protestant paramilitaries embarked on a spree of indiscriminate murder which left thirty Northern Irish Catholics dead. Their leader was Lenny Murphy, a fanatical Unionist whose Catholic-sounding surname led to his persecution as a child for which he took revenge on all Catholics.
Not for the squeamish, The Shankill Butchers is a horrifying detailed account of one of the most brutal series of murders in British legal history - a phenomenon whose real nature has been obscured by the troubled and violent context from which it sprang.
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Martin Dillon is a native of Belfast although educated in England. He lived in France for a time and returned to Northern Ireland to work as a journalist with the Irish News before joining the Belfast Telegraph. He also worked as a freelance journalist for several national newspapers and American periodicals. In 1973 he wrote Political Murder in Northern Ireland which is regarded as the definitive study of political assassination in Northern Ireland. His second book, Rogue Warrior of the SAS, is a biography of the Second World War hero, Lt. Col. Robert Blair Mayne, and is published by Arrow. The Shankill Butchers which was a bestseller in both Ireland and Britain was the first in his trilogy of books about Northern and Southern Ireland.
Martin Dillon has written plays for BBC radio and television and has been Editor in Northern Ireland of many of the BBC's programmes in the area of current affairs. He now works for the BBC History Unit in London.