The Book Discussion Group at the McClelland Library is led by Dr. Joyce East (left), a retired professor of Irish Studies, and Mary Wilber (right), a retired librarian and former member of the Scottsdale Library Board. The group seeks to engage members of our community with the tradition and excellence of all forms of Irish Literature.

Meeting Time and Place

Book discussions will be held from 10:30AM to 12:30PM in the McClelland Library’s Norton Room. Don’t forget to check our library, your local library, local book stores, and the internet to find your copy.


2018/2019 Schedule and Selections

September 29, 2018: Colum McCann, TransAtlantic (novel, 2013) Guide: TransAtlantic

October 27, 2018: William Trevor, Felicia’s Journey (novel,1994) Guide: Felicia

December 1, 2018: Flann O’Brien, At Swim Two Birds (novel, 1951) Guide: At Swim Two Birds

January 26, 2019: Angela Bourke, The Burning of Bridget Cleary (narrative based on historical case, 1999) Guide: The Burning of Bridget Cleary

February 23, 2019: Sebastian Barry, The Whereabouts of Eneas McNulty (novel,1998) Guide: The Whereabouts of Eneus McNulty

March 30, 2019: Alice McDermott, The Ninth Hour (novel, 2017) Guide: The Ninth Hour

April 27, 2019: John Banville, The Sea (novel, 2005) Guide: The Sea


Experience the discussion online

book group

The McClelland Library Book Discussion Group is going digital!  Join us to continue the discussion after meetings by becoming a member of our Facebook group.

Exploring: Narratives and Characters in Irish Literature

Last year our selections of Irish literature were closely focused on Northern Ireland. This year, we propose to explore more widely, reading Irish writers not yet sampled as well as writers of the Irish diaspora.  We will consider narrative strategies used to engage us in plot and characters.  We also begin looking at Irish in the wider world.  The opening selection, TransAtlantic by Colum McCann, touches on these aspects. Other works expand our understanding of Irish emigration and its treatment in literature.  A discussion guide will be posted early in the month.


Sources For Text

(1) The McClelland Library and local bookshops (2) Online sources, including Amazon and Kenny’s (

And don’t miss a thing: