Welcome to the first post in the Ag Léamh series, in which I chat about the books I’ll be reading for the coming week. This week I’m continuing with a book I had started and set down for a while when life got in the way, but have just picked back up again: Rage-In, by Tara Flynn.
This is a non-fiction collection of some of the essays that Tara wrote during her time working for Headstuff. Rarely enough for me, I’m reading this in hardcopy. I came to know of Tara through her involvement in the Repeal the 8th campaign earlier this year. This book was released shortly after the referendum, and on a whim, I went to the launch. I was only back in the real world after breaking my elbow, and I went on my own, which had me as skittish as a newborn deer, but along I went anyway, and had my copy of the book signed, like the bookworm nerd I am (see below for bookworm-nerdy excited photo of me with the author).
I was about halfway through it a while back, but then between college and other life stuff, I sort of forgot to finish it. I rediscovered it on the shelf last week and, never one to not finish a book, I got stuck back in to it. My having left it down for a while, I should say, is no reflection at all on the book or the author’s talents, just a sheer lack of reading time!
So, my thoughts so far? D’you know, it would be easy to look at the multiple essays on the ‘whole abortion thing’ and feel a little apprehensive. It can be, as a result of some of the essay topics, a little tough going – let’s be fair – it’s almost impossible to write *lightly* about the repeated denial of women’s bodily autonomy. And it would be easy to tire of reading about it in this book, it really would. But put into the context of the time those essays were written, the emotion – the bitterness, the exhaustion, the fear – they all just pour out of each word. To be fair, Tara recognises that ‘The Shitness’ can be a bit tough going at time, and there are interludes of lighter topics to give some reprieve. Her writing is in turns emotive, and witty, for example in her dealing with the topic of internet trolling, she renders the typical troll idiotic and powerless masterfully.
All in all, it’s been a tough read so far, and I’m not exactly staying up till dawn devouring it, but it’s a collection of essays on topical, complex issues that are a compelling, if at times, difficult read. I’m looking forward to seeing it out to the end this time!
What are you reading this week? How are you finding it so far? Do let me know in the comments!
Ag Léamh (which translates from Irish as reading) is a new weekly series on the books I’m reading and listening to, and my thoughts on them as I go along. Posts will usually go live on Mondays, and depending on the voraciousness of my reading each week, possibly also on Fridays of each week.