Walking With Ghosts : A Memoir
Our Irish Book of the Month for October 2021
Born to working-class parents and the eldest of six children, Gabriel Byrne harboured a childhood desire to become a priest. Four years later, Byrne had been expelled from an English seminary and he quickly returned to his native city. There he took odd jobs as a messenger boy and a factory labourer to get by. In his spare time he visited the cinema, where he could be alone and yet part of a crowd. It was here that he could begin to imagine a life beyond the grey world of '60s Ireland.
It was a friend who suggested Byrne join an amateur drama group, a decision that would change his life forever and launch him on an extraordinary forty-year career in film and theatre. Moving between sensual recollection of childhood in a now almost vanished Ireland and reflections on stardom in Hollywood and on Broadway, often through the lens of addiction. Hilarious and heartbreaking Walking With Ghosts is a lyrical homage to the people and landscapes that ultimately shape our destinies.