Poets born in the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland, as well as poets of Irish ancestry and non-nationals who have been resident and writing in Ireland for long periods are included. A reference book for students of Irish literature it is also a poetry anthology representing poets who have published at least one collection.
"An excellent anthology and critical, bibliographical and biographical directory. Salmon, who have contributed enormously to making poetry a popular and regular shopping commodity, have excelled themselves. For every shelf."
"The White Page/An Bhileog Bhán is beautifully produced, and testifies to McBreen's dedication to and enthusiasm for Irish women writers. Every fan of poetry and women's writing will find their own surprises and pleasures in this collection, which marks a particular historic moment in Irish literature. This anthology offers a wealth of information about the publishing history of women poets since the 1970s, when only 13 of the contributors were in print... Of the 113 poets McBreen catalogues, more than half published their first collections in the 1990s. Salmon, which publishes this volume, has published more first collections by women than any single publisher during that decade."
The Irish Times
"This must-have for thorough poetry collections offers samples of more than a hundred Irish women poets who have published at least one volume of poetry. It's comprehensiveness alone would make it an invaluable introduction to an enormously creative community of poets... The first lady of Irish letters, Eavan Boland, joins Mary Dorcey, Medbh McGuckian, Iris Murdoch, and scores of others better known in their homeland than in America. Just one poem by each poet appears, which leaves the reader wanting more, but extensive biographic and bibliographic annotation compensate somewhat. A candy sampler of a book for poetry lovers."
Patricia Monaghan, Booklist
Editor Joan McBreen's 2009 publications include a collection, Heather Island and the anthology The Watchful Heart - A New Generation of Irish Poets. Together with her ongoing involvement with Irish literary festivals such as the Yeats Summer School, Clifden Arts Week, Listowel Writers' Week and The Cúirt International Festival of Literature, since 2007 she has been Literary Advisor and co-ordinator of the Oliver St. John Gogarty Literary Festival at Renvyle House Hotel, Connemara, Co. Galway.