Local history round-up: A comprehensive history of Cork
Plus the story of Kylemore Abbey and the history of Adare Manor estate
Tree planting at Kylemore from The Benedictine Nuns. Photograph: Kylemore
Few pleasures can compare with a passionate expert describing their work and Frank Keohane constructs an engaging and idiosyncratic picture in Cork City and County (Yale, £45) the first Munster volume modelled in the Pevsner architectural guide series. He haunts not just the city, but many one-street villages, churchyards, out-of-the-way places and overgrown ruins, coming across oddities and unlocking mysteries with stimulating detail.
From the grandiose set pieces such as St Fin Barre’s Cathedral, Bantry House and Charles Fort, to the almshouses, dovecotes, clapper bridges and gunpowder mill complex at Ballincollig, an exceptional richness of architecture is presented. A substantial introduction weaves through history and landscape, while the rigorously organised contents embrace archaeology, medieval buildings, castles and tower houses, friaries, priories and a few surprises.