I'm very excited to publish this interview with the Lilliput Press! Lilliput Press is a national treasure and celebrated its 35 year anniversry in 2019. It is an amazing independent bookshop and publisher in the heart of Stoneybatter in Dublin. Amy from Lilliput Press was kind enough to pick some excellent smart thinking books for us this week! Read her great interview answers below.
Q. What are two recent smart thinking books that are your favourite and/or have been popular in your shop?
The Scar by Mary Cregan is an intimate memoir in which Mary Cregan shares deeply personal memories of loss, despair and self-inquiry and links them intelligently and sensitively with a medical and cultural history of depressive illness. When her daughter passed away at 2 days old, Mary plunged into a deep depression. After attempting suicide, she received a diagnosis of a ‘major depressive episode, with melancholia.’
The Scar is a timely, relevant and riveting memoir as well as an education in the history of melancholia, the asylum, electroconvulsive therapy, anti-depressants, and the experience of those who suffer from the too-often stigmatized illness of depression. It is a book for anyone has known grief, sadness, or despair. Cregan throws off the shackles of silence and stigma, and in doing so, she offers hope to all those still struggling.
In Introducing John Moriarty, Canadian theologian and academic Michael W. Higgins compiles the essential writings of Irish philosopher and mystic, John Moriarty. This distillation of Moriarty’s texts on ecology, mysticism and spirituality is a perfect introduction to the work of this complex and, at times, esoteric philosopher. Higgins’ commentary provides an excellent guide to one of the country’s most enigmatic modern thinkers and is an essential addition to the library of anyone interested in Irish philosophy and spirituality.
Q. What are two classic or established smart thinking non-fiction books that you and/or your customers like?
Dead as Doornails, first published in 1976, brings back into print a true classic of Irish memoir. Anthony Cronin’s account of life in post-war literary Dublin is as funny and colourful as one would expect from an intimate of Brendan Behan, Patrick Kavanagh and Myles na Gopaleen; but it is also a clear-eyed and bracing antidote to the kitsch that passes for literary history and memory in the Dublin of today.
Dreamtime by John Moriarty, is a revised and enlarged edition of John Moriarty’s first published work, which has been out of print since 1994. A Book of Revelations mediated by stories and personal excursions in literature, philosophy and sacred writings, Moriarty articulates the wisdom of humanity, drawing on cultural landscapes in India, China, Egypt, Australia, the Americas and Europe. Now recognized as a classic of spiritual writing, it enlarges our capacity for symbolic understanding in an age of millennial anxiety.
Q. What is one wildcard smart thinking book that you like and/or you have in stock which may not be very well known?
The Growth Illusion: How Economic Growth has Enriched the Few, Impoverished the Many, and Endangered the Planet by Richard Douthwaite. Is economic growth improving our lives? In 1992, when the first edition of The Growth Illusion appeared, most people had little doubt that the answer was ‘Yes’. Today, however, the climate of opinion has changed and there is widespread acceptance that, while growth might be necessary to generate jobs, the development path we are following isn’t making life better for ourselves or our children. This new, revised edition of The Growth Illusion explains what has gone wrong.
Image Copyrights: The Lilliput Press (The Scar, Introducing John Moriarty, Dead As Doornails, Dreamtime, The Growth Illusion)