All Souls: A Family Story from Southie
A searing coming-of-age memoir set in an unfamiliar world: Irish South Boston. Michael MacDonald brings us a poor and intensely insular neighbourhood ... Show synopsis A searing coming-of-age memoir set in an unfamiliar world: Irish South Boston. Michael MacDonald brings us a poor and intensely insular neighbourhood which its residents agree is the "best place in the world". Through his eyes we meet Michael's mini-skirted, accordion-playing mother who, by herself, cares for her ten children through a combination of high spirits and scam. Too soon "Southie" becomes a place controlled by a resident gangster, later revealed to be an informant for the FBI. It is a world primed for the escalation of class violence, and then, with sickening inevitability, of the racial violence that swirls around Boston's forced bussing in the 1970s. The violence spills into the MacDonald family, so that within a few years four of Michael's siblings lose their lives to drugs and organized crime. All but destroyed by grief and the Southie code that doesn't allow him to feel it, MacDonald gets out. His work as an anti-violence activist is the powerfully redemptive close to his story.