AGE:

I’m 29 and a bit and the bit’s my own business. Although the ‘bit’ is getting harder and harder to ignore. They say now that we’re all supposed to be living longer so now I’m apparently still middle aged. My middle is definitely ageing.

MARITAL STATUS:

Image of Ann Devine

My husband Denis is a grand solid man with a touch of devilment. He bought me an ice-cream below in Killarney and said ‘We might as well get married what do you think Ann?’ And I said ‘Go on so we will’. I mean we were going out a good while at the time. He didn’t just come up to me at the Mr. Softee.

We like the wildlife documentaries – me and Denis. We’d be watching out to see who on the Serengeti would remind him of a local. That’s like so-and-so says Denis about some fella he works with and the next thing the hippo would destroy the watering hole out of his own hole.

‘Who am I then?’ I’d say, ‘Don’t say hippo.’

‘Lioness’ says Denis straight away. But then in the next minute David Attenborough would show the lioness up to all sorts with ten lads with big manes. And that wouldn’t be my style.

OCCUPATION:

I work as a carer for a big elder care company. I mind four people in the local area. There’s Neans who is a pure ticket. ‘Stick with me girleen she says to me. I’ll tell you where all the bodies are buried around here.’ Another is poor Johnny Lordan. A harmless man who’s main hobby was going out in his van to warn people with his headlights if the speed trap was on the road. ‘Flash’ Lordan, they call him. He’s alone, like all of them. A flighty wife ran off with a burglar alarm man. The poor man can get visibly excited when I’m changing the dressing on his leg. I tell him I don’t mind. I’ve seen worse. Or better says he!

My boss Tracy has been on lots of training courses and comes back from each one with a new pain for my arse. She wants everything put into the ‘system’. ‘You have to upload it Ann. There has to be an audit trail.’ Do you want me to put Flash’s visible excitement into the audit trail? I nearly say to her. I nearly say a lot of things.

LIKES:

I like popping into Leona’s local shop for the bit of local gossip. I use Lidl for the ‘big shop’. You couldn’t feed a house on Leona’s prices, but you’re not going to get much news up in Lidl with the speed of the items they’d throw at you. So I go into Leona’s to get the bare minimum that would qualify me to get a bit of gossip. A few scones maybe. I let on they’re the rarest of scones and you couldn’t get them anywhere else. Even though she buys them in Lidl and sells them on for twice the price.

I love getting the bag of chips at the chipper. If Nawaz is on he'll give me an extra scoop and then try and sell me a Dairy Millk.  

 

DISLIKES:

I hate red wine from the fridge. ‘What type a wine do you want Ann?’ asks Johnny in the pub. ‘Is it the cab sav? ‘Cab sav’ he says when he hands the wine over the counter to me as if he’s a connoisseur and the wine comes out freezing cold. Now I ask just for the bottle and I sit on it for a half an hour before drinking it and take sips out of Denis’s pint. We must look half-quare with one pint in front of us and me sitting on half an arse warming the wine, but I suppose people might think I’m odd anyway.

I don’t say anything outright about it of course. I remember complaining about too much garlic in a thing I got at the hotel one night and it was a year before they stopped mentioning it. ‘Is that too garlicky now Ann?’

My hair. I haven’t been able to do a damn thing with it since my Communion. And certainly no hairdresser around here is going to change that. So I always just ask them for a tidy. I play it safe with what I have. That’s my style.

  • Ann Devine, Ready for Her Close-Up

  • 'Warm, charming and laugh-out-loud funny… Ann Devine, Ready For Her Close-Up is a little ray of sunshine, sure to delight' Irish Independent


    Meet Ann Devine, a riddle, wrapped up in a fleece, inside a Skoda Octavia.

    Now that her youngest has flown the nest, Ann finds herself at a loose end. Until, that is, she is put forward for the Kilsudgeon Tidy Towns Committee.

    Yet all is not neat and tidy in Kilsudgeon. There are strange sightings of people who aren't local driving 4x4s with a yellow reg, a man bun requesting kefir in the restaurant and a quad bike at a funeral.

    What does this have to do with rumours of a brand new television series to rival Game of Thrones? And what will it all mean for Kilsudgeon's newly proposed town park?

    A lot, as it happens.

    As the town begins to fill up with the film crew, extras and a Hollywood star who is fond of the drink, everyone welcomes the chance to make a few bob and to finally get enough broadband to send an attachment.

    Or nearly everyone. Harmony is threatened when the newcomers seem to be doing more damage than good and the last straw is when Ann’s pride and joy - a floral arrangement in a boat - is trashed. She’s about to discover what it means to go viral…



    'Warm-spirited, funny, dark when it needs to be, and – most importantly – underwritten by a scalpel-sharp ear for how Irish people really speak…O’Regan never gets it wrong' Sunday Business Post

    'Ann Devine brings a smile to the face of rural Ireland…O’Regan satirises small-town Ireland with both affection and deadpan wit' Sunday Times

    'This book captures something warm and wholesome … it feels indulgent and reminds the reader of home. Prepare to laugh and grimace at the antics of the Irish Mammy' Irish Times

    'Everybody knows an Ann Devine ... It's hard to write a book that's funny the whole way through, consistently funny with belly laughs ... but Colm has done that' Áine Toner, Ireland AM

    'Laugh-out-loud' Irish Daily Mail

    'O’Regan taps into the wild, weird and woolly' RTÉ Guide

  • Buy the book

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