Dubray Non-Fiction Book of the Year

Shortlisted 2021

Four Years in The Cauldron

By Brian O'Donovan

From the start of his stint as RTÉ’s Washington Correspondent Brian O’Donovan’s lively and authoritative reporting of a tumultuous period in American life has been must-watch TV.

Four Years in the Cauldron is his account of four busy years working in the US. He draws a compelling picture, full of telling colour and detail, of covering its fractured politics, particularly the extraordinary presidency of Donald Trump and the knife-edge election of Joe Biden. And he gives his unique perspective on big stories such as the Covid emergency, the Capitol riot, the murder of George Floyd and trial and conviction of his police killer.

He also provides a visceral sense of what it’s like living in a country shaped by guns, God, far-fetched conspiracy theories and the running sore of racism. Yet, drawing on his network of contacts, neighbours, friends and family connections outside the white-hot heat of Washington politics, he writes about the lives of ordinary American people with nuance and understanding.

Four Years in the Cauldron is the riveting story of a nation at a crucial crossroads. It is a must-read for getting to grips with the US at a moment of profound reckoning.

About Brian O'Donovan...

Brian O’Donovan is RTÉ’s Washington Correspondent, a post he has held since January 2017. Before assuming that role, Brian worked in News in RTÉ as a multimedia journalist. Previously he worked with TV3 and Red FM radio. Four Years in the Cauldron is his first book.

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