Faber to mark anniversary of Lyra McKee’s murder with an anthology of her work
Lyra McKee: Lost, Found, Remembered will be published next April
Lyra McKee: “sought truth as a journalist not simply by asking difficult questions, but perhaps more crucially by listening rigorously – and open-heartedly – to the answers.” Photograph: Jess Lowe/ AFP / Getty Images
Faber & Faber has announced that it is to publish an anthology of Lyra McKee’s work to mark the first anniversary of the journalist’s murder last April in Derry. Lyra McKee: Lost, Found, Remembered will be published on April 2nd, 2020.
Louisa Joyner, Faber’s publishing director, said: “It is hard to comprehend that Lyra McKee was murdered less than five months ago. Since her death we have worked with those Lyra loved to determine how best to commemorate her writing and magnify her voice. Lyra sought truth as a journalist not simply by asking difficult questions, but perhaps more crucially by listening rigorously – and open-heartedly – to the answers. Her work speaks to her subtlety of expression and her intellectual and political courage. This collection is our testament to Lyra, a celebration of her talent, and a reminder of what we have lost.”
The anthology, she said, would weave together pieces that defined McKee’s reputation as one of the most important and formidable journalists of her generation. It will showcase the range of her voice by bringing together unpublished material alongside both her celebrated and lesser-known pieces. “It reveals the sheer scope of McKee’s intellectual and radically humane engagement with the world – and lets her spirit live on in her own words.”
While Faber could not confirm which of Mc Kee’s articles would be included, one of her most acclaimed and influential essays was The suicide of The Ceasefire Babies, a typically empathetic piece about the toll the legacy of the Troubles took on the young in the form of suicide. It included the poignant linmes: “We were the Good Friday Agreement generation, destined to never witness the horrors of war but to reap the spoils of peace. The spoils just never seemed to reach us.”
McKee was born in 1990 in Belfast. She won Sky News’ Young Journalists Award in 2006 and became an investigative reporter, writing for numerous newspapers, magazines and websites. She was featured as one of Forbes’ 30 under 30 and a rising literary star by the Irish Times. She was shot dead by republican dissidents during rioting in Derry in 2019. At the time of her death Lyra was working on a piece of investigative journalism entitled The Lost Boys, which is not yet ready for publication, but remains under review with Faber and those closest to Lyra.
The Lost Boys was to explore the disappearances of a number of children and young men during the Troubles. Many were not believed to be victims of the IRA or the UVF and their disappearances were never solved by the police.
Angels With Blue Faces, McKee’s investigation into the murder in 1981 of Rev Robert Bradford, the Ulster Unionist MP for South Belfast was published posthumously by Excalibur Press this summer.