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Author Kate Kerrigan reads from her new novel 'The Lost Garden' (Ballina Library)

Date(s): Tuesday 29th April 2014 8pm

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Aileen Doherty is leaving the island of Ilaunmor for the first time. She can’t wait to leave the confines of her sheltered life to go on her first adventure, tattie picking for the summer in Scotland, with her father and two older brothers. What she hadn’t bargained for was meeting the irresistible Jimmy Walsh, who falls for flame-haired Aileen the moment he sets eyes on her. Spending each day working together side by side, Aileen and Jimmy fall passionately in love, until their happiness is cruelly cut short by a tragic accident which will change their young lives forever. Back on Ilmanour, Aileen find solace in reviving an abandoned garden which has been left as lonely and bereft as she has. Gradually, through the magic of hope, Aileen brings the garden back to life - and herself with it. But it takes a true miracle to finally heal her broken heart. The Lost Garden is a mesmerising story about loss, friendship and the power of true love.

Set on fictional islands off the West Coast of Ireland, bestselling author Kate Kerrigan was inspired to write the book after hearing the story of the Kirkintilloch tragedy - where ten young men from Achill Island were killed in a fire in their sleeping quarters while in the Scottish town 'tattie hoking' (potato picking) in the summer of 1937.

Morag Prunty was brought up in London by Irish parents and worked there for many years as a magazine journalist and editor (ex Just Seventeen magazine fans take note) and returned to Ireland in 1991. After ten years working in Dublin as editor of Irish Tatler, she finally got my dream of being a published writer. Morag and her family moved to an 1920's house by the sea near Killala, right next to her mother’s hometown of Ballina – which she shares with her husband and her two young sons. Morag writes most days in a small cottage in her mother’s back garden.‚Äč

Pre Kate Kerrigan she wrote four Morag Prunty books - "madcap comedies" before swapping over to her new style of historical/modern fiction and changing her (pen) name. The first Kate Kerrigan novel, Recipes for a Perfect Marriage was published in 2005 and the second The Miracle of Grace in 2007. Her Ellie Hogan trilogy which started with Ellis Island was a Richard & Judy Summer read and the second City of Hope continued the story. The final book in the Ellie trilogy Land of Dreams was published in April 2013. The Lost Garden is her latest book.

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