Catherine Dunne is the author of nine novels. Most recently, The Things We Know Now, won the 700th anniversary Giovanni Boccaccio International Prize for Fiction and was shortlisted for the Eason Novel of the Year at the Irish Book Awards 2013.
Catherine has also published one work of non-fiction: a social history of Irish immigrants in London, called An Unconsidered People. Her work has been translated into several languages.
She has facilitated Creative Writing Workshops for Listowel Writers’ Week, The Seanchaí Literary & Cultural Centre Listowel, Dublin City Council, The Irish Writers’ Centre and the Arvon Foundation in the UK.
When Patrick Grant meets Ella, he seizes the opportunity of a new life with her. He imagines the future with his beautiful second wife by his side: the years ahead filled with all that is bright and promising.
When Ella gives birth to Daniel, Patrick’s happiness is complete. A son at last. Patrick adores Daniel: a golden child, talented, artistic, loving.
And then, when Daniel is fourteen, tragedy strikes.
Without warning, Patrick and Ella’s world is shattered beyond repair and Patrick is forced to re-evaluate everything: his own life, his role as husband and father, all his previous assumptions about family.
Together with Ella, he is forced to embark on a voyage of discovery. He must confront uncomfortable truths about himself and about the privileged world he and his wife inhabit.
This is the story of a family torn apart by conflict, suspicion and loss. It is also a story, ultimately, of redemption and forgiveness – and the strength of severely-tested family bonds.
‘A Name for Himself’ is the story of a loner, Farrell, a man who has survived a fractured childhood. He searches for love, and finds it with Grace, the daughter of his employer. But issues of class and emotional and mental fragility threaten to destroy their relationship. In his desire to protect the woman he loves, Farrell gets caught up in the violence of an obsession, and the results are catastrophic.
‘A Name for Himself’ was translated into several languages and became an international bestseller.
Hannah, May and Eleanor are sisters whose early life in Dublin with their middle class parents, has prepared them for a comfortable future of marriage, children and servants. Further north, Mary and Cecilia are also sisters, struggling to make a living in the linen mills of Belfast amid rising political tension. The lives of all the sisters are destined to unfold in ways that none of them could have imagined and ANOTHER KIND OF LIFE is the intricately crafted tale of how their lives entwine, against the backdrop of the rapidly changing Ireland of the late 19th century.In her eagerly awaited new novel Catherine Dunne returns to the themes of family ties, love and loyalty which she has delineated so finely in her earlier work but this time she opens out her canvas to tell us a much wider story.
Four women gather to celebrate their friendship. A quarter-century of intimacies shared, betrayals survived, differences reconciled. There is Claire, with her unsuitable men; she knows that life will never give her the one thing she has always wanted. Nora, the perfect housewife, has kept something hidden from her friends for over twenty-five years. Maggie has been unhappily married to Ray for longer than she cares to remember. And then there is Georgie, feisty and opinionated, who has had her own way more than is good for her. But tonight, the complex web of spouses, lovers and secrets that has bound them all together is about to unravel. And one of the four women plans not to be there. At a Time Like This, things can never be the same again . . . ‘Dunne is such a gifted storyteller that she credibly recreates a world that pulls the reader in deep . . . ‘ Evening Herald
In the beginning there was a very ordinary family – Ben, Rose, and their three children. Then, one morning, without warning, Ben leaves and Rose is left to face life alone. This is the story of Rose and Ben’s marriage and how Rose struggles to reinvent her life when he has gone.
‘Beautifully written, perfectly paced and very, very moving.’ Roddy Doyle
‘In the Beginning’ was Cattherine’s first novel. It was translated into several languages and became an international bestseller
Lynda Graham has been fortunate in life. She is happily married, with two wonderful children, Ciarán and Katie. She has a beautiful home and garden in one of the most affluent suburbs of Dublin. Her world feels safe and uncomplicated, one she now takes for granted. That is until Jon, a friend of Ciarán’s from university – handsome, charming and clever – inveigles his way into their lives. There’s something about Jon that Lynda finds unnerving – he is almost too perfect. And her instinct is right: Jon’s arrival sets in motion a spiral of events that contributes to the gradual disintegration of all she holds dear. When Jon leaves, his disappearance is even more destructive than his presence. Lynda’s quest to track him down reveals unpalatable truths about his past and the reason for his existence in their lives. Lynda knows that Jon is out there somewhere – watching, waiting, malevolent. And she also knows that she must do whatever it takes to protect the most precious thing she has – her family. ‘Dunne has a clever knack of turning ordinary lives into compelling fiction’ Irish Post
After twenty years of marriage, Ben ups and leaves his wife Rose, their children and their family home in Dublin. Just like that: no words of regret, no compromise, no note – only a simple ‘I don’t love you anymore’. It has taken Rose all this time to get her life together again: she’s brought up her three children, Lisa, Brian and Damien single-handedly, and not without difficulty for never again does she want to be completely broke, or to have to revisit that night in hospital with Damien hovering between life and death. To think about it just makes her shudder. Now Rose is concentrating on her business, the ‘Bonne Bouche’ bakery, and all the clients she’s won, all the friends she’s made. Her accounts are in order, the business is blooming. Life really doesn’t seem too bad. Until Ben returns, again without warning, and it is soon clear that he expects to infiltrate Rose’s carefully created world in the most unwelcome of ways. A stunning sequel to In the Beginning, Catherine Dunne’s first novel, Something Like Love is an astonishing portrait of a marriage, and of how the ties that bind are sometimes there forever. Praise for Catherine Dunne: ‘The Walled Garden is that great rarity: a flawless novel’ Daily Express ‘A hugely gratifying book; something to feed the spirit again and again’ Irish Independent
Beth flew the coop as soon as she could, making a life for herself and her daughter in London. James, her dutiful brother, stayed in Dublin, raising a family not far from their mother, Alice. Now Alice is dying and Beth has returned to the shabby grandeur of her childhood home to keep vigil by her bedside. Unable to speak, the only way Alice feels she can bridge the gap of understanding between her and Beth is to write to her and seek reconciliation. Set during the last days of Alice’s life, this is also an extraordinary preceptive novel about childhood and growing old. ‘A hugely gratifying book; something to feed the spirit again and again’ Irish Independent ‘Dunne’s writing is beautifully understated’ She ‘The Walled Garden is that great rarity: a flawless novel’ Express