Marie Carthy recalls the short life of her brother John, who was shot dead by the Emergency Response Unit in Abbeylara in 2000, in this title that tells as much about the treatment of people with depression in modern Ireland as it does about John himself.

In what is described as a 'bi-polar episode', John was shot dead after coming out of his house following a 25-hour stand off. He had suffered from depression for many years but had managed to get on with his life, like any other normal person would, with the help of his loving family.

Marie Carthy details her brother's brief life and many of the incidents that helped shape him, including his allegation that he had been physically attacked whilst in garda custody for something he didn't do.

We will never know what was going through John's mind on that fateful day in Abbeylara, but we do have the findings of Mr Justice Robert Barr's Tribunal of Enquiry, which found major faults with the garda handling of the incident.

Marie Carthy explains that she wrote the book as a tribute to her brother. "Justice Barr made it possible to bring my story to a conclusion," she writes.

"He searched for John behind the weight of conflicting evidence and gave us back the son and brother we loved. Justice Barr also gave us back our self respect."

The book is an inspiration for anyone seeking justice in life or in their own mind.

Mark Cummins

John Carthy's story was previously told by RTÉ's Midlands Correspondent, Ciarán Mullooly in 'Death on Holy Thursday'. Read the review here.