Liam Mac Cóil is a writer and critic. He lives in the County Meath Gaeltacht of Ráth Chairn. He has written books, articles and essays on literature, history, the arts and television.
His novel An Dochtúir Áthas (1994) was the first Irish language book shortlisted for The Irish Times Literary Awards. Since then, he has written another novel, An Claíomh Solais (The Sword of Light), and a writer's diary, Nótaí ón Lár, as well as An Chláirseach agus an Choróin: Seacht gCeolsiansa Stanford, a book about the composer Charles Villiers Stanford. His novel, Fontenoy won the Gradam Uí Shúilleabháin 2006 award. As well as his work for adults, he has written a book in the series Scéalta Staire (Tales from History), Toirealach Ó Cearúlláin. He has also translated from the Welsh,Tiocfaidh Lá by Ffred Ffransis (Carbad, 1977), and Saibhreas Chnoic Chaspair by J. Selwyn Lloyd (An Gúm, 1981),and published the history of his own native place, The Book of Blackrock (Carraig Books, 1977, 1981). In association with Professor Ruairí Ó hUiginn, Liam edits the literary and arts journal Bliainiris.
Leabhar Breac published his latest novel, An Litir, an historical thriller set in Ireland and the continent of Europe in 1612. A second novel in the series, I dTir Strainséartha, will be published 2014.
"There is no other novelist in Irish today who writes with the same care, precision and clarity." — Alan Titley, The Irish Times
A knight awakes in the middle of the woods, like a child, without any memory, and not knowing where he is. Step by step, he explores his surroundings and begins to make his way towards the light. This is a philosophical novel by one of the country’s finest writers, written in the style of the 15th Century, the beginning of the age of printing and publishing. An Choill tries to get to grips with the case of one of the Knights of the round Table, who didn’t reach the Holy Grail. This is the story of the man who doesn’t knoew. It might just be the story of everyman.
THE SECOND BOOK IN THE 'LÚCÁS Ó BRIAIN' SERIES (An Litir). The Atlantic port of Galway 1612, Lucás, a young student and a gifted swordsman, is entrusted by a shady Jesuit priest with an important letter to be delivered into the hands of Aodh Mór Ó Néill, Earl of Tyrone (leader of the Irish chieftains in Rome seeking the help of Philip of Spain to retake Ireland from the English). Lúcás's mission will take him on a perilous journey across Europe. Following hot on his heels, in the narrow streets of the city, is the enemy's most devious and brutal spy - with orders to stop him, at all costs.
In this beautifully presented book, not only is Stanford's music and Gaelic music examined, but also Stanford's cultural background. Indeed, it is not often we get an Irish book which examines Englishness, as is done in this book which gets to grips with both the Irish and the English question, and what it means to be an anglophonic Englishman, and what it means go be a Gael.
"Ba ansin a tharla sé. Ag stróiceadh aníos an bóthar mar a bheadh splanc dhubh thintrí ann. Le linn dó féin agus do Reiner a bheith ag cur deireadh le radharc cathréimneach an chlaímh go croíúil glórach, chonaic sé ag déanamh air é mar a bheadh neach dorc
My own doctor sent me to see him. "You have an illness," he said that day, "that doesn't have a name. Doctor Áthas is very skilled in this sort of thing," he said. "I'm going to send you to him. He's a psychoanalyst." That's how this story begins; if it is a story. The first novel by Liam Mac Cóil, and the first Irish language book to be shortlisted for The Irish Times Literary Awards.
Galway, Spring 1612. The Atlantic port of Galway has become a hotbed of conspiracy and intrigue against English rule in Ireland. In this thrilling 17th century swashbuckler, Lucás, a young student and a gifted swordsman, is entrusted by a shady Jesuit priest with an important mission that will take him on a perilous journey across Europe. Following hot on his heels, in the narrow streets of the city, is the enemy's most devious and brutal spy - with orders to stop him, at all costs.
In the archives of the French town of Chartres some printed pages from the 18th Century were discovered, and a reference to the mysterious author of these printers' proofs, Captain Seán Ó Raghallaigh. Set in and around the battle of Fontenoy 1745, Liam Mac Cóil's masterful novel explores the writing of history, and the points of view of the writer.
Nuair a hiarraidh ar an údar ábhar a chur ar fáil a dhéanfadh ceiliúradh ar theanga na Gaeilge sa bhliain 2000, agus sin, dá mb'fhéidir é, i bhfoirm dialainne, fuair sé amach go raibh uirlis curtha ina lámha ag An Aimsir Óg lena bhféadfadh sé scrúdú a dhé