Living with Ghosts : The Inside Story from a 'Troubles' Mind by Brian Rowan ( large paperback Sept 2022)
Brian Rowan is a former BBC correspondent in Belfast. Since the late 1980s, he has reported on all the major developments on Northern Ireland’s journey from war to peace; stories he has told using a range of sources – IRA, loyalist, police, military, intelligence, political, Church and others. Rowan left the BBC in 2005, the year the IRA ended its armed campaign. Four times he has been a category winner in the Northern Ireland Press and Broadcast awards, including twice as Specialist Journalist of the Year. Living With Ghosts is his seventh book.
For many of us who have lived through the troubles, the past is something we’ve tried to forget, move on from, suppress. But it’s still there in our politics, in our sense of who we are and where we are going. I have long respected Brian Rowan’s work and enjoyed this book which explores the unreported world of the troubles; the secrets, the corruption, the lies, and the struggles. Brian argues that we cannot create a seamless narrative of the past, a full and agreed account of the past is not achievable, but, as he argues in the chapter on amnesty, there is a way out of it, albeit messy and never complete. We will never know the whole story but books like these help.