synopsis

synopsis
praise

praise
synopsis

synopsis
praise
praise

Purchase All Souls at:

Amazon
Barnes and Noble
Powell's Books
Indie Bound
Audio Book (Read by Michael. Listen to a sample.)

A breakaway bestseller since it first appeared in 1999, All Souls takes us deep into Michael Patrick MacDonald’s Southie, the proudly insular neighborhood with the highest concentration of white poverty in America. Rocked by Whitey Bulger’s drug schemes and school busing riots, MacDonald’s Southie is populated by sharply hewn characters like his Ma, a miniskirted accordion-playing single mother who endures the deaths of four of her eleven children. Nearly suffocated by his grief and Southie’s code of silence, MacDonald tells his family story with gritty honesty and radiant insight. By turns explosive and touching, All Souls ultimately shares a powerful message of hope, renewal, and redemption.

"All Souls grasps your emotions from the first pages and wont let go." — Howard Zinn, author of A People's History of the United States

"All Souls is the written equivalent of an Irish Wake, where revelers dance and sing the dead persons praises. In that same style, the book leavens tragedy with dashes of humor but preserves the heartbreaking details." — Brent Staples, The New York Times Book Review

"A guileless and powerful memoir of precarious life and early death in Boston’s Irish ghetto...MacDonald gives new life to this old American story of poor-white pride and prejudice. He also has a knack for quickly grabbing and holding a reader’s attention." — R. Z. Sheppard, TIME Magazine

"His anecdotes have the fiery power of a redeemed sinner’s fiery sermon. His swift conversational style sweeps you into his anger and sorrow. He is a born rabble-rouser whose emotional power numbs the reader’s reason." — USA Today

"Peppered with hard-won humor…the story of a man who understands poverty because he has known it and is blessed with an ability to bear witness in plainspoken prose." — Newsweek

"Harrowing." — Susan Orlean, The New Yorker

"All Souls hits with the power of a driven fist that crashes through the cynics intellectual defenses and leaves one speechless." — Sunday Business Post (U.K. and Ireland)

"An incendiary, moving book that startles on nearly every page.... A remarkable work." — Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

"A rare and compelling book. Highly passionate." — Chicago Tribune

"With every sentence, MacDonald seems to be working through his pain, searching for deeper meaning... This tough Irish American transforms hardship into hope." — Vibe

"All Souls is a memoir filled with desperation and despair, but there is also hope in it... His discovery of his vocation in neighborhood activism is a refreshing change from most memoirs, which so often...are largely concerned with describing an ascent to celebrityhood." — Julian Moynahan, The New York Review of Books

"A brilliantly original memoir of white-working-class life…MacDonald spins stories with a wondrous mix of wild humor and brooding darkness. Though his prose is luminous, he has a purposefulness that goes well beyond that of a raconteur." — David L. Kirp, The American Prospect

"Michael Patrick MacDonald has a gift for narrative, an eye for social detail, and a voice of earned authenticity. He is the man... He was there." — Jack Beatty, author of The Rascal King

"He’s written the most honest portrayal of lost youth." — Dicky Barrett of The Mighty Mighty Bosstones, US Weekly

"Powerful...All Souls covers ground nobody has covered before: it’s an insider tale told by a man who got out then returned, drawing a chilling link between ‘Irish Mafia’ drug activity headed by a kingpin Whitey Bulger, and the deaths of young people whose lives were quickly forgotten... Fascinating reading." — The Irish Herald

"A must read…All Souls is poised to become one of the most significant Irish American books of the era." — Irish Edition

"Remarkable... Compulsively readable, a sort of mean-streets alternative to Frank McCourt... Reading it may change your ideas about American poverty forever." — The Daily Camera (Boulder, CO)

"Michael Patrick MacDonald rips the cover off the myth that poverty and violence happen predominantly in the black community. His story of growing up poor and white in South Boston reminds me of my own, growing up poor and black in the South Bronx. This is an honest, piercing tale -once you read it, you will never look at our country the same way." — Geoffrey Canada, author of Fist Stick Knife Gun

Purchase Easter Rising at:

Amazon
Barnes and Noble
Powell's Books
Indie Bound

In Easter Rising Michael Patrick MacDonald tells the story of how he escaped Old Colony housing project, and learned to live again. Desperate to avoid the "normal" life of crime and drugs that surrounds him, Michael crosses the bridge into the bigger world and reinvents himself in the burgeoning punk rock movement downtown. At nineteen MacDonald escapes further, to Paris and then London. Out of money, he contacts his Irish immigrant grandfather — who offers a loan after securing a promise that Michael will visit Ireland. It is this reluctant journey "home" that reconciles MacDonald with his neighborhood, his family, and his heritage — and the real way forward. A roots journey laced with both rebellion and profound redemption.

"A brave, heartbreaking piece of truth." — Patti Smith

"[A] tale of a journey that is as inspiring as it is haunting." — Publishers Weekly (Starred Review)

"MacDonald is a fine writer, with a terrific ear for dialogue and a gift for creating compelling scenes... An instructive, lively tale, told in a voice that's well worth hearing" — Washington Post Book World

"At pivotal moments, MacDonald's prose - muscular and insistently alive - quivers like a fist about to take a swing... Where All Souls reads as a eulogy for a lost neighborhood, Easter Rising punches through its bindings like a punk rock zine" — San Francisco Chronicle

"Lyrical, reflective, amusing, and wise." — Irish America

A well-wrought tale of personal transformation, Easter Rising hits all the right notes." — Clint Conley, Mission of Burma

"MacDonald’s gift is that he guides us with vision, insight, humor, and the clear, chiseled word. His is a rare sleight of hand." — Colum McCann, author of This Side of Brightness

"Blistering scrapbook pages from a melancholy childhood." — Kirkus

"Powerful." — Booklist

"Alternately funny and heartbreaking" — Newsweek