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The Dubliner Diaries by Trevor White, Lilliput Press

Writing.ie | Book Reviews | Non Fiction
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The Dubliner Diaries, The Lilliput Press

In the summer of 2000, long before the boom rang hollow Trevor White returned from New York to launch the Dubliner Magazine. Within months it was teetering on the brink of failure. Yet, in the face of dismal sales, unwitting controversy and a uniquely Irish form of begrudgery, White struggled on until he sold The Dubliner to publisher, Michael O’Doherty in 2008. It is now distributed as a weekly supplement in the Thursday edition of the Evening Herald. During these turbulent years White kept a diary documenting the triumphs and pitfalls of establishing and running a niche magazine in a small, crowded market and it is these diary entries that are collected here. White is an engaging raconteur and delightfully chronicles an extraordinary and transient period in our history. As a cautionary tale describing the sorry trajectory of the tiger, this book, and the often misunderstood but frequently excellent Dubliner Magazine that spawned it, will be difficult to surpass.

Some of my favourite quotes:

“I’ve found a reader. Her name is Emily Hourican, and she will double, for the moment, as the editor.”

“There are people who are so enchanted by the idea of being Irish that when they go to New York on Christmas shopping trips they stay in Fitzpatrick’s Hotel. Yet we laugh at Americans who come to Ireland and demand crazy things like decent service.”

“I did not capture the Celtic Tiger. All I provided was a partial view of a blind animal”

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