Twenty years on from her critically acclaimed book, Northern Protestants: An Unsettled People, Susan McKay talks again to the people she 'uneasily' called 'her own', those from a Protestant background in Northern Ireland.
Against the backdrop of social justice movements, Brexit, the centenary of the foundation of the Northern Ireland state, and the prospect of a poll on Irish Unity, McKay interviews a wide range of people from all over Northern Ireland. They include students, politicians, ex-security force members, victims and survivors, former paramilitaries, business people, religious leaders, community workers, writers and many others. She seeks to understand how the Northern Protestant community is negotiating the 'shifting ground' on which it stands. She gives space to the Lundys, those who find in banishment the freedom to grow.
The result is a vivid and multi-layered portrait of a surprisingly diverse and fluid community. Written with McKay's trademark passion and conviction, and full of vulnerable and valiant testimony, this book is compelling, essential reading.
A fascinating and constantly thought-provoking book.
Sean O'Hagan, Observer
Seamlessly weaves together personal stories and political events with deep emotional intelligence ... Vital reading in all senses of the word.
Claire Mitchell, Irish Times