At War With the Empire

At War With the Empire

Ireland's Fight for Independence

Written by and Illustrated by Gerry Hunt, Coloured by Matt Griffin

From the author of Blood Upon the Rose comes a graphic novel depicting the War of Independence, a gruelling guerilla war against British rule in Ireland.


Irish Book Awards: Best Irish-Published Book - 2012

Irish Literary Academy - Short-listed

Paperback: €12.99
Paperback: 64 pages
Size:234x165 mm
ISBN: 9781847178169

Category: Graphic Novel, History

From the author of Blood Upon the Rose comes a graphic novel depicting the guerilla war against British rule in Ireland.

At War with the Empire brings this turbulent era of Anglo-Irish relations to life with colourful artwork and lively text. It details the Declaration of Independence in 1919, the leaders involved in guerrilla warfare across the country, the groundbreaking signing of the Anglo-Irish Treaty of 1921 and the effects the Treaty had on Irish politics. Accessible and informative, this beautiful graphic novel is history at its best.

Gerry Hunt

Gerry Hunt worked for twenty-five years as an architect, eighteen of them with the IDA. In 1986 he left architecture and began drawing political cartoons. From this, he moved on to drawing entire comics ... his first, self-produced, comic was a rhyming, Spanish-language work that he gave away to friends. His book The Streets of Dublin was included in an exhibition entitled ‘Artist’s Books’ in the Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago. He published ground-breaking historical graphic novels for The O'Brien Press, about the 1913 Lockout, Easter Rising (1916), War of Independence (1919) and Bobby Sands. Gerry died in June 2018.

Matt Griffin

Matthew Griffin was born in Dublin and now lives in Ennis. He has garnered a reputation as one of the most eclectic graphic artists in contemporary illustration, collecting awards and accolades for his work in publishing, advertising and, in particular, the field of poster art. His passion for visual design was always married to one for writing. His first children’s novel, A Cage of Roots, was published in 2015. Storm Weaver followed the same characters further into a fantasy odyssey (2016), and The Spiral Path brings the enemy through a time portal to modern-day Ireland.

I've no idea why I haven't blogged about Gerry Hunts historical graphic novels before. We've had Blood Upon The Rose, the story of Easter 1916, since it was published in 2009. That was such a success that when At War With The Empire, the follow up came out, I ordered it straightaway. It was a no-brainer - my eldest son loved graphic novels and flew through them. And these books explained (in colourful detail) Irish history that he needed to know about, for school and for life. This latest one, 1913 Larkin's Labour War which I found in the library last week is his favourite of the lot

makes history thoroughly accessible to readers of all ages … highly recommended

Midwest Book Review

bringing history to life better than any history book could hope. Accessible, informative and insightful ... will appeal to both children and adults

Primary Times

a perfect way of introducing a younger person to Irish history ... adults would enjoy it as well ... very interesting

Talking History on Newstalk

'gets children into Irish history but through the graphic novel ... a super idea ... a personal favourite'

Ryan Tubridy

will resonate with many young people, boys especially, who are fascinated with this period of history and particularly the persona of Michael Collins ... essential stock for any school library ... does succeed in providing an exciting introduction to its subject matter

Inis Magazine

'visually the book works very well, the style of the illustrations capturing the mood of the story'

Inis Magazine

having achieved critical acclaim for his graphic account of the Easter Rising, Blood upon the Rose, Gerry Hunt has now turned to the next page in this country’s history. A vividly-presented, engaging account ... will attract younger readers despite its disturbing contact ... a style that will appeal to young readers ... Ireland’s War of Independence as you’ve never seen it before

Evening Echo

The scenes and dialogue ... are masterly. Brilliantly conveying movement and violence ... will appeal to the younger generation ... but it is still a serious history of the war of independence

Books Ireland

as a light introduction to these characters in an educational sense, this book is quite useful. Clever use of colour ... very good ... a resource ... to make that history more accessible than the really boring text books

Comic Cast

The artwork here possesses an accuracy, especially in characters, that is good, while the detail to the historical aspects is incredible. The War itself is a terribly dark part of British history where honour and morals are set to one side in a desperate

some of the images ... are strong enough to work as stand-alone illustrations ... like its predecessor, this will serve as a useful introduction to the subject for second-level students

Sunday Times

even the most pop-culture-literate teenagers should prefer Hunt’s approach to the reams of dates and names typically found in school books ... old-fashioned quality will appeal to fans of war comics

Sunday Times

'moves along at a deceptively fast pace and a strong narrative emerges from the force and vividness of its determinedly old-fashioned drawings'

Sunday Times

books like this belong in every school and library in Ireland to teach us very important aspects of our recent historical past ... a winner on every level ... hats off to O’Brien Press and Gerry Hunt for another winner

Irish Comic News

provides an accessible, informative read for adults as well as young people ... a useful addition to the history classroom ... sticks close to historical events

CBI's Recommended Reads 2012

The War of Independence as you’ve never seen it before. Vivid and detailed ... expect a sequel

RTE Guide

Also by Gerry Hunt:

Blood Upon the Rose
1913 - Larkin's Labour War
Bobby Sands

Go to author page...

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