The long-awaited and much-anticipated new book from Cian Manning has hit the shelves for Christmas and it’s a cracker.

Cian is renowned for his fresh look at Waterford history, his unique style of writing, and his ability to extract the nuggets from the mire of times past. But Blaatherings is very different.

Waterford City – A History, gave a sense of his approach. Very much in the style of a traditional history book, Cian still dragged us off on tangents to the story, teasing out related narratives and adding context to what some might have considered a well-worn path of history.

Blaatherings goes much further, he’s thrown off the history book mantle entirely. 16 short historical biographical essays, the majority of which I had never even heard of, revealing the wonderous, awe-inspiring, and downright scandalous of the County’s past residents. And as befits a writer, trying to break new ground, this His-Story tries to bring Her-Story to the reader too – with at least five of his biographies, from the amazing, the bizarre to the profound. One of Cian’s attributes of course is the gentleness with which he reveals his characters and the attempts he makes to place them in their historical context.

I think this book will be well received in Waterford this Christmas 2023. I’m also relieved to see that it is Vol 1! Suggesting he has more to come…I certainly hope so. Our history belongs to us all, and we need new writers, young writers, and writers from various and diverse backgrounds to add to the story. Cian Manning is one of our finest.

His work can also be enjoyed in a variety of outlets including the Irelands Own – where a recent story of his on Mount Congreve made the front cover.

Blaatherings is currently on sale in the Book Centre Waterford and retails at €10 its also available online

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