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Too Beautiful for Thieves - Book Launch

May 14, 2016 in ,  

History of Spike Island - Launch on Monday


Too Beautiful for Thieves and Pickpockets

If you are around Cork on Monday afternoon (16th of May), why not drop into LHQ, Cork County Library, Carrigrohane Road at 3pm for the launch of Too Beautiful for Thieves and Pickpockets - A History of the Victorian Convict Prison on Spike Island, published with and written by Cal McCarthy and Barra O’Donnabhain.

About the Book

"For almost four decades the Victorian prison on Spike Island was home to Ireland’s most serious and notorious criminals. Established in the midst of one of the worst famines in global history, this huge facility became the largest prison in what was then the United Kingdom, dwarfing institutions like Dartmoor, Pentonville, Mountjoy and Kilmainham"  High death rates during its formative years meant that many of its malnourished inmates were laid to rest beneath its sod. Yet Spike Island was to become a beacon of penal reform, influencing modern correctional systems in countries as far apart as the USA and Germany".

Too Beautiful for Thieves and Pickpockets is a wonderful book which gives us a rare insight into the drama, stories and unexpected humour found in the history of Spike Island. This is the story of the prison, its inmates, their lives and the evolution of the institution. It is also a great read!

You can buy Too Beautiful for Thieves and Pickpockets in our online bookshop.

Launch Details

Too Beautiful for Thieves and Pickpockets - A History of the Victorian Convict Prison on Spike Island will be launched at 3pm on Monday 16th May by the Mayor of the County of Cork, Cllr. John Paul O’Shea at LHQ, Cork County Library, Carrigrohane Road.

If you are interested in self-publishing a memoir or local history, contact and we will be delighted to discuss your project with you.








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