From the Papers

Women’s Prize for Fiction

The longlist of 16 for the Women’s Prize for Fiction has two Irish writers: Kathleen MacMahon (Nothing But Blue Sky) and Naoise Dolan (Exciting Times). The latter was reviewed in the March edition of Tinteán and can be found at The final six in the shortlist will be released on April 28th.

Covid Numbers

April 2 is as good a day as any to compare numbers in Ireland and Australia.

Ireland reported 761 new cases and 17 deaths. Australia had 2 new cases and 17 in quarantine. No deaths.

Total deaths since the start of the pandemic: Ireland 4705: Australia 909

Jim O’Callaghan – remember the name


He declined a position as Minister of State in 2020, because he felt he would have a better chance of becoming leader of Fianna Fail from the backbenches. A TD for Dublin Bay South, he is senior counsel and has been prominent in a number of high-profile cases. In a speech at his former Cambridge college in March, he outlined his position on Irish unification, a speech that was seen as an attempt to outflank Sinn Fein on the subject. O’Callaghan is brother of RTE broadcaster Miriam O’Callaghan.

Vegetarian cities

Based on availability of vegetarian restaurants and also on public availability of fresh and healthy fruit/vegetables, Dublin was ranked 26 from a collection of 75. Only two Australian cities featured in the list: Melbourne at 16 and Sydney at 19. The top position was taken by London.

Joe Brolly


All Ireland football winner in 1993, now a barrister and long time sports commentator, he was in the news after being cut off mid-sentence on Clare Byrne Tonight RTE program about a united Ireland. He was responding to DUP politician Gregory Campbell who had declared that he and his supporters were British. Brolly accused the DUP of ‘chuckling and guffawing when people are trying to have a serious discussion … interested in triumphalism and short-termism.’ At the time, Campbell had left the program, and Brolly was on a video link from Belfast, so Byrne cut him off. He probably got as much publicity for this as for what he said.


Tinteán is delighted to congratulate Merrion Press on receiving the Irish Small Press of the Year award in the Bookseller’s 2021 British Book Awards. Now in its third year, this award was previously classed under the heading ‘Regional Winner’, so this is a small step up, recognising Ireland as not just a ‘region’.

The judging panel highlighted in particular the stellar success of Old Ireland in Colour and Girls Play Too.

Merrion Press have been supporters of Tinteán for many years, happy to send us any of their books that we request for review.