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Growing Up So High


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A moving, vivid and life-affirming picture of a boyhood, an extended family, a proud community and an all-but-vanished way of life.

About the Author

Sean O'Connor was born in 1938 in Francis Street in the famed Liberties of Dublin. He is the seventh of 13 children in a family whose roots in the Liberties extend to 1750. He left school at age thirteen to go to work, and eventually became a Chartered Engineer, holder of a Master's Degree in Science (Trinity College), a Fellow of the Institution of Engineers of Ireland and a Member of the Irish Bar, winning major prizes for Engineering Design on the way. He is married to Viola, lives in Dublin and is the father of five children: novelist Joseph, art-historian Eimear, singer-songwriter Sinead, psychotherapist John and music industry publicist Eoin. GROWING UP SO HIGH is Sean's first book.


To open any page at random is to be instantly swept up in a swirling cornucopia of the sounds, sights and sensations of his childhood, all rendered as fresh as when first experienced by this impressionable, mischievous and inquisitive child...O'Connor's memory of vanished shops, slang expressions and street characters is so strong that here is a memoir for any lover of Dublin folklore to test their knowledge against ... [a] vibrant memoir of a vanished Dublin * Irish Independent *
A joyous portrait of family life ... a wonderful homage to the character of the Liberties and its people * Irish Times *
O'Connor vividly conjures the smallest details of this childhood world - a testament to his powers of recall. The prose is filled with moments of life ... An act of careful attention and reconstruction that will prove richly fascinating to anyone who grew up in Dublin in the middle of the 20th century * The Sunday Business Post *

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