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Sunday 30 January 2022

‘Aftermath’ by Ruth Dudley Edwards

Published by Harvill Secker.
June 2009.
ISBN 978-1-436-20599-6

This is the harrowing but uplifting true story of the fight for justice from the families of the victims of the Omagh bombing.

On 15th August 1998, a 500lb bomb placed by the Real IRA ripped through the town of Omagh, killing two unborn babies, seven men, eleven women and eleven children and injuring over two hundred innocent Saturday shoppers. The lack of evidence prevented anyone being brought to justice for the worst atrocity in Northern Ireland’s modern history. The families of the victims took it upon themselves to pursue the men who the police believed responsible, but couldn’t prove anything. This book is the story of those simple folk drawn together through the horror of terrorism, and how, with no money and no experience of law, they stood together until justice was delivered. One cannot help but be moved by this story – it could be any one of us, at any time. The July 7th bombings tore the streets of London apart and touched us all.

The writing of Aftermath is raw, brave, honest, and nothing short of brilliant. Ruth Dudley Edwards is known for her sharp wit and satirical books, and, for her, nothing could be more different. This story is as inspiring as it is gripping. The film Shindler’s List came to mind when I read this book, in as much as it details another horror of history that should never be forgotten. That film touched all who saw it, and this book has the same effect. I hope it will be read in generations to come. To Miss Dudley-Edwards I raise my hat for this honest, heart-wrenching and beautifully written account.

Reviewer: Linda Regan
Editor’s Note
: Since 1993, Ruth has written seriously and/or frivolously for almost every national newspaper in the Republic of Ireland and the United Kingdom and appears frequently on radio and television in Ireland, the UK and on the BBC World Service.  Her series featuring Baroness Ida (Jack) Troutbeck are:  Corridors of Death, The Saint Valentine Day Murders, English School of Murder, Clubbed to Death, Matricide at St. Martha's, Ten Lords a Leaping, Murder in a Cathedral, Publish and Be Murdered, The Anglo-Irish Murders, Carnage on the Committee, and Murdering Americans. Murdering Americans won the Last Laugh Award presented at Bristol CrimeFest 2008.

Ruth Dudley Edwards has been a teacher, marketing executive and civil servant and is a prize-winning biographer as well as an historian, journalist and broadcaster.  The targets of her satirical crime novels include the civil service, gentlemen’s clubs, a Cambridge college, the House of Lords, the Church of England, publishing, literary prizes and politically-correct Americans. In 2008 she won the CrimeFest Last Laugh Award for Murdering Americans.  Killing the Emperors is about conceptual art and won the CrimeFest Last Laugh Award 2013.

Linda Regan is the author of six police procedural crime novels. She is also an actress. She holds a Masters degree in critical writing and journalism, and writes a regular column, including book reviews, for three magazines. She also presents the book-club spot on BBC Radio Kent. She is an avid reader and welcomes the chance to read new writers. 

  To read a review of Linda's most recent book
The Terror Within
click on the title.

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