The Guns of Easter

The Guns of Easter

It is 1916 and Europe is at war. From the poverty of the Dublin slums twelve-year-old Jimmy Conway is pulled between the British Army and the rebels in the Easter Rising. Real history seen through the eyes of a child from a master storyteller.


Bisto Book of the Year Award 1997 - Eilís Dillon award - 1997

- Winner

Bisto Book of the Year Award 1997 - Historical Novel category - 1997

- Winner

Paperback: €9.99
Paperback: 176 pages
Size:196x130 mm
ISBN: 9780862784492

E-Book (ePub): €5.99
Also available as an E-Book (ePub)
ISBN: 9781847174062

It is 1916 and Europe is at war. From the poverty of the Dublin slums twelve-year-old Jimmy Conway sees it all as glorious, and loves the British Army for which his father is fighting.

But when war comes to his own streets Jimmy's loyalties are divided. The rebels occupy the General Post Office and other parts of the city, and Jimmy's uncle is among them. Dublin's streets are destroyed, business comes to a halt.

In an attempt to find food for his family, Jimmy crosses the city, avoiding the shooting, weaving through the army patrols, hoping to make it home before curfew. But his quest is not easy and danger threatens at every corner.

Gerard Whelan

Gerard Whelan was born in Enniscorthy, County Wexford, and has lived and worked in several European countries. After some time living in Dublin, he has returned to live in his native Wexford. He is the author of many books for children and a multiple award-winner. His first novel, The Guns of Easter, won the Eilís Dillon Memorial Award for first-time writers. Dream Invader later won the Bisto Book of the Year Award. He has also been shortlisted for the Reading Association of Ireland awards. Gerard is also the author of A Winter of Spies and Out of Nowhere.

a stirring account of the Easter Rising

Mad About Books

'An impressive first novel'

The Sunday Independent The Sunday Independent

'A fine, humane anti-war novel which young people will relish'

Books Ireland Books Ireland

'A sensitive portrayal of a boy's forced and traumatic emergence into adolescence'

Books Ireland Books Ireland

A striking first novel endowed with a strong sense of the conflicting passions of the time. Some of the scenes are as searing as anything in O'Casey's trilogy.

Children's Books in Ireland Children's Books in Ireland

We sweat it out with Jimmy as he confronts horror at every turn. Physically and emotionally in a no-man's land, the boy's perceptions of good men killing one another leave him more scarred than any bullets.

Tribune Magazine

Whelan immerses readers in a harsh, yet poignant, journey that finds Jimmy learning much about the Irish people, his family, and most important, himself. The exciting plot moves effortlessly, enhanced by plenty of details to add character depth and historical context, and Whelan wisely avoids both extreme tragedy and overzealous triumph. The result is a fine adventure, with some realistic, genuinely heart-tugging twists.

Roger Leslie - Booklist

A wonderful and gripping class novel. Ideal for my 5th and 6th class, all boys!!They are currently engrossed with Jimmy Conway's life and in the capital!

Clare Doyle

Teaching Resources: free to view and download

  • Download RBFS: Teaching ideas for fifth class from O'Brien Reading Programme

  • Download Teaching Guides: Gerard Whelan answers the top 20 questions his readers ask about The Guns of Easter

  • Download Teaching Guides: Teaching guide from O'Brien Teaching Guides Collection 1

Audio available: listen to some of this book now ...

    Audiobook sample 1. Ready by Stephen Hogan:
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Rights Held: World, all languages

Also by Gerard Whelan:

War Children
A Winter of Spies
Out of Nowhere

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