All the Spangled Host

By: John A. Ryan

Publication Date: 16 Dec 2015


All The Spangled Host by John A. Ryan

John A. Ryan ‘is an apostle of nature, possessed of a poet’s sensitivity … his stories have a directness and simplicity that remind me of certain songs by Neil Young.’

In this lyrical and compelling collection of tales of the quotidian, John A. Ryan paints a sincere picture of Ireland, it’s environment and people in All the Spangled Host. His delicate awareness of the world around him is reflected in every paragraph of these poetic and contemplative pieces. Each is infused with a sense of mindfulness, slowness and the almost divine nature of the small and the commonplace, reminding the reader of the sacredness of life at the heart of the universe.

Some of these twenty prose pieces, scattered across rural and small-town Ireland, France and the Mediterranean littoral, have already appeared in the pages of the Irish Press. Most are hitherto unseen. They partake of Benedict Kiely, Donal Ryan and the deep traditions of Irish traditional rural literature.


John A. Ryan’s first book, Song of Duiske (Lilliput, 1989, 2006), was described by Sean Dunne as ‘a small classic of Irish literature’ (Cork Examiner) and by Pat Donlan, national librarian, as ‘a tiny masterpiece … like a miniature painting’ (RTÉ). His novella, Mo’soor: Song of the Road, was published by Lilliput in 2013. John is a retired teacher and currently lives in Waterford.

The stories are timeless; they are suffused with Ryan’s gentle appreciation of the insignificance but wonder of ordinary lives.’ The Irish Times

Also available as an ebook


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Weight .25 kg
Dimensions 136 × 216 mm
Publication Date

16 Dec 2015



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