Éilís Ní Dhuibhne


The adventures of three teenagers living in the Dublin suburbs – Ruán, Emma and Colm. Best-selling novel now in 4th print. Chapter 1 on Leaving Certificate course.


Product ID: 1115 ISBN: 978-1-901176-62-9 Categories: , , , , ,

The adventures of three teenagers living in the Dublin suburbs – Ruán, Emma and Colm. All neighbours of the same age but with different personalities, backgrounds, and social class, preparing for the Leaving Cert. An accident turns everything on its head. They get to know one another better and after all the hurlamaboc have grown and developed. Every teenager will recognise Rúan, Emma and Colm. They will enjoy their company as they grow through their adventures. The book offers an insight into the social prejudices and bigotry in Ireland today. This is a readable, inspiring and humorous novel which will be enjoyed by all, young and old alike. This book was also published in Gàidhlig under the title of Ùpraid (2006).

Extracts from interview with Ciara Dwyer, Sunday Independent, 07 May 2006:
“I’ve always had a secret life under the surface” says Éilís Ní Dhuibhne. “That was the life of books”. The Dublin writer sits in the front room of her Shankill home, gazes out at the vast sea and smiles. There are daffodils on the mantelpiece, dreamy paintings in the wall, and in the corner there is a piano with some sheet music. Surrounded by the arts she seems happy; as content as the white cat outside who swishes his tail up in the air, then rubs his head against the window sill, while the sun shines in. Although the author who was shortlisted for the Orange prize she sees herself primarily as a short story writer, she is also a novelist, a playwright and an author of children’s fiction, and then she has a whole writing career in Irish. Her latest book, Hurlamaboc, an Irish-language novel for teenagers is about middle-class Ross O’Carroll-Kelly types who get tangled up in all sorts of shenanigans. Although she went to an all-Irish school, and even learnt Old and Middle-Irish at UCD, she only began to write in Irish when somebody asked her.

“We weren’t a Gaeilgeoir family. My mother didn’t speak Irish but she was very pro-Irish. I never heard my father say he loved Irish but he was a native speaker from Donegal. Some families were adamantly nationalistic and Irish was the rule. We weren’t at all like that. My father would use it for prayers and greetings”.

She attributes writing in Irish to an emotional connection with her late father. This fresh strand to her writing then blossomed. While Éilís got her blas from her father, her mother reared the family – she has a sister and a brother – with the belief that they could do anything, which was some achievement, considering money was tight and their daily lives full of drudgery.

Read an interview with the author on Beo.ie: http://www.beo.ie/alt-eilis-ni-dhuibhne.aspx

Weight 285 g

Pól Ó Muirí, The Irish Times, July 2007

Éilís Ní Dhuibhne is one of a very small group of authors who write creatively in both Irish and English. Many Irish-language poets and novelists rely on translators to put English on them. They remain Irish-language writers with all that that entails but gain a second home audience. Ní Dhuibhne, however, challenges the old saying: "Ní féidir leat freastal ar an dá thrá"/ "You can't serve two masters" by doing just that. Her work in English, such as The Dancers Dancing, which was shortlisted for the Orange Prize, caters for one audience, while her work in Irish, an entirely independent and imaginative opus, caters for another.

Her latest novel in Irish, Hurlamaboc, is for young adult readers and will add further to her reputation among those who prefer the first official language as their literary medium. The title can be translated as "commotion, uproar; noise of chase" and deals with three Dublin teenagers as they sit their Leaving Cert and prepare to face adulthood and all its responsibilities. The voices of the three teenagers - Ruán, Emma and Colm - all sound true to this reader's ear. That is no mean achievement given that youth culture can be shallow and the danger for an adult writer lies in injuring themselves when diving in. Yet, while the culture in which these teenagers move may be shallow, they themselves are not. They are reflective beings. They appreciate that they will soon have choices to make and that those choices will affect them in the years to come. The bitchiness, petty-mindedness and class distinctions of teenage life are there, but then these young adults are often simply aping the behaviour of their parents. They did not lick it off the stones, as the saying has it.

Readers of a certain age may well remember the novels of Séamus Ó Grianna and his depiction of poverty and the mores of Donegal at the beginning of the last century. Ní Dhuibhne has replaced the peasants of rural Donegal with the patricians of urban Dublin. Her language lacks the rich idiom of Ó Grianna but she writes clearly, authentically and has a sharp eye for the small moments of doubt and fear which beset us all. She has, in her own quiet way, brought the novel in Irish into the 21st century.

Nollaig Rowan, The Irish Times, December 2006

The Irish-language novel, Hurlamaboc, by Éilís Ní Dhuibhne (Cois Life Teo), is teenage-speak as Gaeilge. It centres on three teenagers in their Leaving Certificate year - their lives, loves and mothers. The novel is sprinkled with English: "Agus go tobann is stay at home housewives iad, seachas career girls." It is wry and modern and boosts your confidence in understanding our language whether you are heading for the Leaving Certificate or, like me, have left it some 30 years ago.

Ruaidhrí Ó Báille - Inis, Winter 2006, No. 18

Hurlamaboc is her first outing in teenage fiction since in Irish and contains echoes of the social commentary of Dúnmharú sa Daingean. Ruán, Colm, and Emma are three urban teenagers. However, while they may be from the same city, they ard not from the same class. Emma's parents are separated and her mother has an obnoxious new boyfriend. He lives with them in their small flat. Ruán is from a wealthy household. His mother is a condescending snob who has scant respect for Emma's Mum. Emma understands this even if Ruán doesn't quite grasp it. Colm comes from a violent home. It is Colm's house that the hurlamaboc (or 'commotion') of the title takes place. His father is a course belligerent man. His mother is a weak woman and her weakness causes her to let her son down badly. When Ruán's parents are killed in a road accident in Turkey, the three are thrown together in a way that probably wouldn't happen in the ordinary course of events. With regard to style I take it that it is for the reason of realism Éilís puts so many English words and phrases into the mouths of the teenagers. However, I felt the technique actually took from the overall impact of it, I couldn't quite book. While reading Hurlamaboc I couldn't escape the feeling that the characters were in fact speaking the English of Dublin's southside and that Éilís was actually translating the words into Irish. Hurlamaboc was awarded a prize in the Fiction for Young People section of the Oireachtas Literary Awards

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