Today with Sean O'Rourke

    Monday - Friday at 10am



    Romantic Fiction

    Romantic fiction often gets a bad rap, but chances are we’ll all be sneaking a few into our suitcases this summer for the basic reason that they provide us with enormous reading pleasure.

    So just what are the pleasures of romantic fiction? Keelin was this morning joined by two women who know plenty about it, authors Cathy Kelly and Susan Lannigan.

    ‘It Started With Paris’ by Cathy Kelly and 'White Feather' by Susan Lanigan are both out now. 

    Read More: Best romantic novels of all time, The Telegraph, 1st May 2015 


    Book: The Village Effect: Why Face to Face Contact Matters

    Some experts say we’re more connected now than ever before due to the internet whilst others say we’re less connected because of the internet – so which is it?

    In her new book The Village Effect: Why Face-to-Face Contact Matters, journalist and psychologist Susan Pinker argues that both views are correct. In this book she demonstrates the real and quantifiable benefits of human contact and explores how advances in technology have created new communities in our lives but at the expense of – as she puts it – the ‘village effect’.

    Read More: Review: The Village Effect, The Irish Examiner, Noel Bakeer, 28th Feb 2015

    Read More: The Village Effect: Why Face-to-Face Contact Matters by Susan Pinker, review: 'gentle polemic', The Telegraph, Nicholas Blincoe, 25th Feb 2015

    Susan Pinker’s book The Village Effect: Why Face-to-Face Contact Matters is available in bookshops now and is published by Atlantic Books.


    So You've Been Publicly Shamed - Jon Ronson

    Author Jon Ronson joined Sean to discuss new book So You've Been Publicly Shamed, and how we are all at risk on social media. 

    Jon speaks of how he began to meet with those who have been victims of our destruction. 


    Poetry Collection: The Days of Surprise

    Paul Durcan is one of the nation’s best-loved and most important poets. His latest collection is called ‘The Days Of Surprise’ and he was in studio this morning.

    Paul Durcan will be reading at the dlr Mountains to Sea Book Festival on Wed 18th March. You can book tickets on and for those of you in the West - he'll be reading at the Cúirt International Festival of Literature on 22nd April and you can book tickets for that from

    The book is called The Days Of Suprise and it’s published by Harvill Secker at €14.99.

    Listen back to Breaking News, an elegy to Seamus Heaney here: 

    Read More: Poet Paul Durcan uses poetry to criticise but doesn’t want offend, Caroline O'Doherty, Irish Examiner, 6th Mar 2015


    AC Grayling - The Challenge of Things

    A.C. Grayling is one of the most prolific philosophers of our time. He is an impassioned defender of secular values and the founder of the New College for the Humanities in London, which he set up in 2012 to offer a new kind of education for undergraduates.

    In his new book, The Challenge of Things, Grayling turns his attention to some of the most troubling phenomena of the twentieth-first-century, from drone warfare to the human rights record of China, and uses philosophical reflection as a guide through this difficult ethical terrain. And he joined Sean from our London studios this morning.

    The Challenge of Things published by Bloomsbury, €16.99


    Book: Clinton's Grand Strategy

    Clinton's Grand Strategy: US Foreign Policy in a Post-Cold War World - published by Bloomsbury.

    Bill Clinton in campaigning for election in 1992 attacked George Bush Sr for being a ‘foreign policy president’.  For Clinton the focus needed be on domestic matters and he had his hobby-horses of the economy and universal health care.  In response President Bush remarked of Clinton and running mate Al Gore, “my dog Millie knows more about foreign policy than these two bozos”. 

    The American people had their say and the new president had to bleed himself in the world of geopolitics on the job. 

    The book Clinton’s Grand Strategy: US Foreign Policy in a Post-Cold War World has just been published by Bloomsbury and it looks at how US overseas relations changed over the two terms of the Clinton administration. 

    Its author, historian James D Boys, says in his conclusion “Whereas Woodrow Wilson made the world safe for democracy, Clinton sought to make the world safe for commerce",  and he joined Sean this morning.


    Book: A Nation and Not a Rabble

    A Nation and Not a Rabble - The Irish Revolution 1913 - 1923, by author and historian Diarmuid Ferriter who joined Sean in studio this morning.

    The book is published by Profile Books - €38.99



    Book: Cop On

    One of the great Irish colloquialisms has to be telling someone to cop on.  We all know what it means and we all know who could do with a bit more of it.  But can it be taught and would our children benefit from learning to have it? Would we?

    Colman Noctor is a child and adolescent psychotherapist here in Dublin with some 18 years clinical experience of young people with emotional difficulties. Add to that his own personal experience as a parent and you have the basis for his thesis that not only can you teach children cop on it is a life skill.

    And his book ‘Cop On: What it is and why your child needs it to survive and thrive in today’s world’ has just been published by Gill & Macmillan.

    Colman will be signing copies of his book, Cop On, this Saturday, 7th March at 11am in Barker and Jones bookshop Naas.


    Mary Portas - Shop Girl

    She’s the flame-haired, straight-talking retail expert who transformed the fortunes of Harvey Nichols as well as campaigning to save the high street.

    Her BBC series, Mary Queen of Shops, elevated failing businesses to the modern age and she was made a high-street star by the Tory party.

    But she is also the woman who held her family together after her mother’s death and is now a poster-woman for same-sex marriage and her new series, Secret Shopper, is running on Channel 4 on Tuesday nights.

    Shop girl by Mary Portas is published by Doubleday.


    Book: Tips from Widows

    For many people, the death of a partner comes suddenly and without warning. When Jan Robinson’s husband died, she found herself at a loss as to what to do – how to organise a funeral, her husband’s money affairs, and, later, how to cope with crying and talking to children and grandchildren about her late husband.

    She ended up writing a book called Tips From Widows, which is a collection of wisdom from other widows she met and spoke to during the grieving process.

    Dr Valerie Bresnihan, a widow of four years, has been reading the book for us.

    TIPS FROM WIDOWS by Jan Robinson is published by Bloomsbury

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