THE NUMBER ONE BESTSELLER, SHORTLISTED FOR THE 2016 IRISH BOOK AWARDS
With the threat of the First World War looming, tension simmers under the surface of Ireland.
Bright, beautiful and intelligent, the Gifford sisters Grace, Muriel and Nellie kick against the conventions of their privileged, wealthy Anglo-Irish background and their mother Isabella’s expectations.
As War erupts across Europe, the spirited sisters soon find themselves caught up in Ireland’s struggle for freedom.
Muriel falls deeply in love with writer Thomas MacDonagh, artist Grace meets the enigmatic Joe Plunkett – both leaders of ‘The Rising’ – while Nellie joins ‘The Citizen Army’ and takes up arms to fight alongside Countess Markievicz in the rebellion.
On Easter Monday 1916, the Rising begins, and the world of the Gifford sisters and everyone they hold dear is torn apart in a fight that is destined for tragedy.
‘Engrossing’ Irish Sunday Times
‘Finally, women are being written back into the history of [Ireland's] awakening’ Irish Mail on Sunday
Everything changes for Kate, Moya and Romy when they receive word that Maeve Dillon, their mother, is critically ill. It is time to return from Dublin, London and New York to Rossmore and the old stone house overlooking the Irish Sea where they grew up. But ancient jealousies surface as each sister confronts the past and the decisions they have made.
For work-driven Kate it is time to take stock of her role as a high-flying ambitious lawyer and single parent; life is a battle between work and looking after Molly with little time for a proper relationship. Even Patrick, the man she once fell for, has ended up marrying her sister. Beautiful and intense Moya must take a hard look at her marriage to the charming but unfaithful Patrick and consider her own worth. For wild child Romy who has travelled the world and hasn't put a foot on Irish soil for years, it is time to finally stop running and find the courage to confront her family.
A good and caring mother, Maeve Dillon has somehow over the years labelled each of her three daughters: Moya the beautiful, Kate the brains, and Romy, the bold and wild one. Now it is finally time for all three to break out of the box.
Maggie Ryan can't help it! She constantly finds herself organizing and meddling in the lives of others, trying to match things and people together, from her neighbours in Dublin's Pleasant Square to her own family. With three bright, beautiful daughters who are still single Maggie decides that a little romantic matching is needed.
However matchmaking is not as easy as it seems and Maggie's quest to find the perfect partner for each of her reluctant daughters is proving difficult.
Her architect daughter Grace has had enough of heartbreak and given up on men deciding instead to concentrate on her career. Poetry obsessed Anna believes that no man can ever live up to her hero W.B.Yeats. While single-parent Sarah devotes so much time to her little girl Evie that romance constantly passes her by.
Determined to get 'rings on those fingers' Maggie Ryan believes that the arrival of bachelor Mark McGuinness, who has just purchased a house on 'The Square', is an opportunity far too good to be missed!
Martha MacKenzie was an ordinary woman. Nothing extraordinary had ever happened to her, unless she counted her marriage to Dan and the birth of her three perfect, healthy children. Until the day of the accident, when she touched the Lucas boy as he lay dying on the tarmac, and they said she saved him. That was the start of it all...
As word of her healing spreads, Martha's life and the lives of those around her are radically altered. Hounded by the media and those in desperate search of hope and miracles, Martha is forced to decide what is most important in her life.
Inheritance changes everything, as Ella Kennedy soon discovers when her father dies and the hundred-acre farm she has grown up on and run for years in the Wexford countryside is no longer hers. Hurt and angry following a fight with her brother, Ella leaves her home and people she cares for and joins her wild cousin Kitty in Dublin.
Exiled in the city, Ella is forced to make a new life for herself like the other country girls. She tries to forget the farm, pushing all thoughts of Sean Flanagan, the neighbour she had loved, from her mind. In time she hopes to return to the home she left and find true happiness with a man who wants her for herself, and not what she will bring him.
Hats! Hats! Hats!Upbrims, sidesweeps, silks, ribbons and trims all become part of Ellie's life when she inherits the little hat shop on Dublin's South Anne Street.But the city is changing and Ellie must decide if she wants to follow the hat-making tradition of her mother or accept a generous offer to sell the shop.
Encouraged by her friends, Ellie takes on the hat shop and her quirky designs and tempting millinery confections soon attract a rich assortment of customers all in search of the perfect hat.
Creating hats for weddings, shows, fashion and fun, and falling for the charms of Rory Doyle along the way, Ellie is happier than she has ever been before. But as her fingers work their magic she discovers a lot can happen in the heart of a city like Dublin...
Molly’s perfect life comes crashing down following the unexpected death of her husband David. She is left alone with a big old house to maintain, finances in disarray and her hopes for happiness in a heap. But Molly is a survivor. Despite objections from her two daughters, Molly fears that the only solution will be to sell their beloved home. But as she finds herself drawn to the old neglected and overgrown walled rose garden and the dilapidated gardener’s cottage attached, shesuddenly sees a future as shedecides to restore them.
As the rose garden takes on a new life and starts to bloom again, Molly finds that she can look to the future with new confidence and hope.
Kate Cassidy is about to celebrate twenty five years of marriage to Paddy. But the secret she has kept all this time is about to be discovered.
Erin Harris has always known that she is different from the rest of her family. Over the years she has begun to put the pieces together and now she has to discover who she really is and where she comes from.
Nina Harris has always put her marriage and family before everything. But now she must face up to the truth as her daughter is prepared to run off and search for a woman she doesn't know.
There is no escaping the past. Kate, Erin and Nina all have to come to terms with what happened so many years before, and to find their own way of dealing with it.
Alice loves to cook. She believes the secret of good food is to cook with passion.
Her love affair with cookery has taken her from her parents' seaside hotel, to Paris and then one of Dublin's finest restaurants. Then she marries Liam, and is happy to hang up her chef's hat and cook for her family and friends instead.
But now she's cooking for one!
Her marriage to Liam over, it's high time she learns to stand on her own two feet and begin again...
Alice opens The Martello School of Cookery and a group of total strangers learn from her to create food that is tasty and delicious. And in the comfort of her kitchen they discover, not only how to cook - but recipes for life...
By the number one bestselling author of The Mother of the Bride
Everyone knows that Amy and Dan are made for each other. So when they announce their engagement their families are over the moon, especially Amy's mother Helen.
What could be more exciting than planning a daughter's wedding?
But as the countdown to the Big Day begins, and mother and daughter throw themselves into creating the wedding of their dreams, not everyone's prepared for the commotion this involves.
Bride-to-be Amy sees her best laid wedding plans start to unravel and things go from bad to worse, as Helen struggles to pick up the pieces and get her family back on track.
Amy and Helen each discover what love and marriage is all about... but is it too late?
It's not easy being a mother, let alone the Mother of the Bride!
Marita Conlon-McKenna is one of Ireland's favourite authors. Her previous novels include The Matchmaker and the number one bestsellers The Magdalen and Mother of the Bride. She is the winner of the prestigious International Reading Association award and is a regular contributor on Radio and TV.
She lives in Dublin with her family.