Watching the Door
Cheating Death in 1970s BelfastKevin Myers
1 March 2008
Published by Atlantic Books
Watching the Door is the memoir of an ordinary young man who drifted into a war zone, made it his home and, somehow, emerged unscathed.
After Kevin Myers graduated from university in 1969, a chance job application landed him a position as a journalist in Belfast, reporting on the Troubles. There, he was absorbed quickly into the local community and became privy to the secrets of Protestant and Catholic paramilitaries alike. In his darkly funny account of life on the streets, Myers evokes with searing clarity a society on the brink of civil war. His memoir is a remarkable portrait of those divisions, from the dedicated violence of loyalist gangs and provos to the behaviour of paratroopers, squaddies, the local police force and the wider population. Raw, candid and courageous, Watching the Door recalls the bloodiest time in Northern Ireland’s recent past. It is a coming-of-age story like no other.