Book Description: Climbing Slemish is the story of one family connection emerging from rural Ulster at the start of the 20th Century, and living through political upheaval in Ireland, and the wider conflict of two world wars. The impact of such events, however, is much less than that of the intense fundamental Protestantism embraced by the central characters, and its, at times, devastating effects on the lives of individuals and their relationships with one another. Slemish, the oddly shaped mountain in County Antrim where St. Patrick is said to have tended his flocks, is a motif, which continues to link the family members over several generations, and over great distances. It is also a metaphor for life, and the challenges that have to be met. It is complete and comprehensible when viewed from a distance, but like life, often shapeless and puzzling to those struggling up it. Part one follows the fortunes of two young girls, thrown together by circumstance in 1911 in a farm at the foot of Slemish, only to be separated again for the decade which saw the Great War and the partition of Ireland. It is told as third person narrative, and ends with the outbreak of the Second World War on September 3 1939, with one of the girls on the liner Athenia when a German torpedo sinks it in the Atlantic. In part two the story is taken up in first person by the next generation, the author himself, and describes growing up in a world at war, with, at some, warring parents and the constant treat of eternal damnation, but also with the delights of childhood in mid 20th century Ulster. He too, has to climb Slemish. While told partly in fictionalized form, Climbing Slemish is based on detailed research and the recollections of some of the principal character. No attempt has been made to disguise names and places.