Black & Irish: Legends, Trailblazers and Everyday Heroes

The first collection of its kind, Black & Irish is an exciting non-fiction book that celebrates many iconic Black Irish people and their achievements. With actors, writers, fashion influencers, doctors, activists, musicians, sports stars, academics, and many more, this book acts as a tribute to several inspirational figures of all ages.

Each chapter delves into the life, goals, and perspectives of each person, uncovering what it means to them to be both Black and Irish. Some particularly engaging biographies include justice campaigner for survivors of state institutions Christine Buckley, LGBTQIA+ activist Beryl Ohas, Afro hair specialist Manni the Barber, and actor Patrick Martins to name a small few.

This is an incredibly well-researched, engaging read from beginning to end. Each chapter consists of an expertly curated biography, highlighting notable achievements, and often concluding with the person’s interpretation of what it means to be Black and Irish. Reiterated throughout the book is the importance of the sense of community among Black Irish people. It emphasises the wide range of perspectives of important topics, particularly regarding racism in Ireland.

A particularly nice detail is how many chapters close with parting words from these heroes to young Black Irish readers, with advice, encouragements, and reminders of what is important. The illustrations by Jessica Louis are delightful, incredibly vibrant, and so full of life – a perfect fit for this book.

This book is a triumph in showcasing that this is a rich community that continues to thrive through everyday successes. A crucial and enjoyable read for all, and a must-have on all school bookshelves.

About the Author
Author Image - Leon Diop
Leon Diop is a 28-year-old mixed-race man from Tallaght, Dublin, Ireland. Born to an Irish mother and a Senegalese father, he grew up in a mixed ethnic and religious household. He studied Psychology in Maynooth University where he served two years as Students' Union President. He is the founder of Black and Irish, an organisation striving to transform Ireland into a global leader in equality and
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About the Author
Author Image - Briana Fitzsimons
Briana Fitzsimons grew up in Yonkers, NY, USA, and has lived in Ireland since 2017. She has been a secondary school teacher for 12 years and also holds degrees in English and Creative Writing. Briana joined the Black and Irish team in 2021 and has been working to make schools across the country more inclusive for all students. One of her main goals is to empower teachers and young people with the
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