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Rules Of The Road By Ciara Geraghty

Rules Of The Road‘Rules Of The Road’ is the latest book by Irish author, Ciara Geraghty.

Tuesday morning starts like any other – until Terry discovers her best friend Iris has gone missing. Finding her takes Terry, Iris and Terry’s confused father Eugene, into an extraordinary journey – one that will change all of their lives. And, along the way, what should be the worst six days of Terry’s life turn into the best. Because friendship teaches us all to be brave. And, sometimes, the rules are made to be broken.

It’s been a while since I read one of Ciara’s book and her latest story is turbulent journey of friendship, loss and sheer determination.

On the day that Terry Shepherd has to take dad from his nursing home due to a rats infestation, her best friend, Iris disappears. Iris unable to live with her progressive MS decides to travel to Switzerland for assisted suicide. But Terry being the friend that she is, is unable to leave her friend to deal with it alone and more importantly try to talk her out of it. So, begins an unlikely journey across Europe as Terry, Iris and Terry’s father Eugene accompany Iris on her final destination.

I absolutely adored this story, it’s written with warmth, wit and sensitivity. All the characters are wonderful, Terry is a sensible character and it’s only on the unexpected adventure with Iris that she begins to see a different side of life, she loses her sensible clothes and embraces new textures and begins to think of her herself. She reflects on her life and how taken for granted she feels by her husband and family. Her dad Eugene has been effected by dementia but has never lost his driving skills from being a taxi driver and is always there in the back ground with driving tips and stories of famous passengers, he injected an air of innocence and fragility into the story, which was heart-warming and heart-breaking at the same time. Iris was a strong character, but the MS has taken away her independence and freedom of life and it’s understandable that she wants to take back the control.

This book is a beautiful story but be warned, it’s a heartbreaker. Touching on the cruelties of both dementia and MS, the illness and how it affects not only the sufferer but those around them. The trio make for entertaining reading, bouncing from poignant moments to humour, helping the reader get through the life affirming story.

Beautifully written with relatable characters and situations, ‘Rules of the Road’ is a modern day ‘Thelma and Louise’ adventure. A story about friendships, life and relationships, this book is an emotional roller-coaster that will you crying and giggling throughout with genuine characters that you hope will never reach their final destination

You can buy ‘Rules Of The Road’ from Amazon and will be available to buy from good bookshops.

This Is Now By Ciara Geraghty

This Is Now‘This Is Now’ is the latest book by Ciara Geraghty.

An ordinary day. An ordinary bank. An ordinary street in an ordinary town. Nothing ever happens, until, one day, a shocking robbery turns life upside down for five people: Cillian, a police detective, Martha, the woman he thought was the life of his life, Tobias, who came to Ireland after WWII and now lies in a coma, shot in the bank robbery,
Roman, the young Polish teenager who is suspected of pulling the trigger and his mother Rosa, the cleaner, who dreamed of a better life for herself and her son and things will never be ordinary again.

Ciara is back with a heartwarming new story, a tale of hope, love and moving on, this Irish tale set in Dublin and the wilds of Donegal made for enjoyable and tender reading.

The story is seen primarily through the eyes of Martha, a grumpy journalist, who is trying to stay away from alcohol as well as move on in life but that’s quite hard when her past suddenly turns up reminding her of what she could have had. Her past is Cillian Larkin, a handsome detective who has been called into investigate the bank robbery that Martha and her friend were caught up in. As she tries to move forward with her life, she struggles with the realisation that she may have lost the best thing that ever happened to her. Whilst young Roman, is on the run, after taking part in the robbery, hoping to provide a better life for him and his mother, a housekeeper to Tobias, an elderly man left in a coma after the bank robbery. He’s a kind and gentle man who moved to Ireland many years after Dresden with the intention of creating a new life but like Martha, his history keeps him from moving on and he spends his time remembering a woman from his past.

The story is cleverly written with a host of vibrant characters with strong personalities and issues that make for dramatic and mysterious reading. I particularly loved Martha and Cillian, the scenes with them I found particularly entertaining. Martha is a gruff and brash character, she isn’t afraid to tell people what she thinks, the only time we see a tender side to her, is when she’s with Cillian and his soft manner takes out a softer side to her. She’s witty with a quick tongue but relies on alcohol to help and is struggling without it, she feels guilty about the loss of her twin sister and is regularly belittled by her mother, but she manages to get through the day, helping her best friend deal with her sexuality. Even though Roman is only fourteen, he’s already playing the man of the house, wanting to help and provide his mother with security but when it goes drastically wrong, we see a young boy living in a strange country uncertain of his future. The scenes with Tobias are poignant ones, a lonely man, who is wrecked with memories of Dresden, but his mind is occupied with the thoughts of a young nurse who helped him and he later fell in love with.

The story is dark and gritty featuring issues of immigration and alcoholism, that was quite compelling reading. With each dark moment, there is a humorous injection, to lighten the mood of the tender tale. Thoroughly researched and sensitively written, ‘This Is Now’ is a beautiful story with relatable characters and a realistic storyline from one of Ireland’s favourite authors.

You can buy This is Now from Amazon and is available to buy from good bookshops.

Ciara Geraghty Talks About Her New Book – Now That I’ve Found You

Ciara GeraghtyToday, Irish author Ciara Geraghty talks about her fabulous new book ‘Now That I’ve Found You’.

  1. Can you tell us about your new book ‘Now That I’ve Found You’?
    Oh, can I say that it is a book that is so close to my heart. Its main theme is parenting and I can safely say that I am in the trenches of that treacherous theme as we speak – I have a 16 year old, a 13 year old and a 6 year old. It’s a hard job and I never thought I would be one of those parents to consider it a ‘job’. Or ‘Work.’ Oh, but it is! So, so much!! And I know lots of parents but I don’t know many who think they’re doing a brilliant job. We all just seem to be getting by. Limping along. And I think it’s because, well, it’s lots of things. First of all, we make a SOLEUM OATH not to be the parents our parents were. And that’s not to say that our parents were pants. But, we think – idealistically, when the children are faint blue lines along a stick we have just peed on – we will be better. We will be more patient. We will be more empathetic. And there we are, sixteen years later, saying exactly the same things our parents said to us and we cry WHY? WHY? It was all going to be so different…

    Anyway, it’s about parenthood. But – and you’ll be glad to hear, I’m sure – it’s got ups as well as downs….Here’s a snifter:

    The main character is Vinnie Boland, a single father who is struggling to raise his teenage daughter and his young son on his own – with insistent help from his elderly mother. He is doing the best he can but remains convinced he’s falling short. Vinnie’s wife – his childhood sweetheart – left the family over a year before the story begins and some part of Vinnie wishes she would come back, if only so he won’t be the only one his children can blame when they get older and realise what a mess he’s made of things. Then he meets Ellen, a reclusive woman who used to be a doctor, who used to have a life and a burgeoning family of her own. One day, Vinnie has a panic attack while he’s driving Ellen to one of her weekly physiotherapy sessions in his taxi and she gets into the driver’s seat and takes him to hospital. It’s the first time Ellen has driven a car since she was involved in a horrific car accident over a year before. This simple act, getting behind the wheel again, releases something in Ellen. The panic attack – its causes and its consequences – forces Vinnie to stop and think about his life. The pair embark on a cautious friendship.

    The story is about life and how it throws things at you when you think that it should have stopped that carry on. It’s about second chances, and all the chances after that. It’s about how you should grab them. How you should expect the worst. And hope for the best.

  2. The paperback cover of the book is very striking. Do you have much involvement in the design of it and do find yourself judging books by their covers?
    Of course I judge books by their covers!! I am a human person!! But when I know / love the author I will buy their book regardless of the cover. But when it’s someone I don’t know, it’s the look of the cover that will tempt me to lift the book from the shelf and turn it over and read the blurb, then – if I like the blurb – open it and read the first paragraph and then – based on this paltry information – I will buy the book. So yes, it is very important. The cover. Because we are a fickle, fickle brand of mammal and that’s what makes the design people in a publishing house exceptionally important and talented.

    When I first saw the paperback cover for ‘Now That I’ve Found You’, I loved it. It spoke to me of the story that was to come and I think that is the essence of a good cover.  

  3. Now That I've Found You

  4. If ‘Now That I’ve Found You’ was to be adapted for screen. Who do you imagine would play the roles of Vinnie and Ellen?
    Definitely John Cusack for Vinnie. And Ellen? Could we get Cate Blanchett? And she can do a great Irish accent!! (She played ‘Veronica Guerin’ remember?).
     
  5. Do you have a favourite character from the story?
    Of course!! But it’s like if you had a favourite child – You could never tell!!
     
  6. What was your favourite book from 2014?
    ‘How Many Letters In Goodbye’ by Yvonne Cassidy. Yvonne is a friend of mine but this is in no way related to my choice. Yvonne is someone I met at my first visit to the Writers Week in Listowel, Co. Kerry. I was alone at that festival. I was unpublished and had no writing allies, in my life, or at the festival. Yvonne – and her friends Emma McEvoy and Bernie Furlong – took me in like a stray cat. Made me realise that you don’t have to be published to be a writer. You just have to write. I read Yvonne’s first book, ‘The Other Boy’, as a manuscript, on dogeared, tea-stained A4 pages and knew that I would love anything this writer wrote because she made me feel. She made me bawl. She made me laugh. And ‘How Many Letters In Goodbye’ is no different. It takes you, in careful hands, into a world that you might otherwise have never known (a coming-of-age story of a young Irish lesbian in America) and this is what great fiction does – it brings a world, that you don’t know anything about, to life. This is my favourite book from 2014. It should be everyone’s favourite book.
     
  7. And finally Ciara, do you have any exciting new projects coming up on the horizon?
    Oh yes I do, and I’m very excited about it! I’m working on a new novel. The ‘working title’ is ‘This is Now’ and it centres on the lives of five seemingly unrelated characters. There is [what I hope will be] an ‘explosive’ prologue that involves all the characters (one of them dies!!) and then we go back, to particular incidents in each of the characters’ lives that form them, that make them the people they become. I suppose it’s about how events in your life inform on the person that you eventually become. I’ve always wanted to write a novel like this – different characters, interwoven in some way, to produce some type of a narrative arc. Hopefully, this is it!!

Now That I’ve Found You by Ciara Geraghty, out now published by Hodder, £6.99 © Ciara Geraghty 2014

You can buy Now That I’ve Found You from Amazon and is available to buy from good bookshops.

Read more about Ciara Geraghty online or follow her on Twitter @ciarageraghty

Handwritten Girl Takes Part In Now That I’ve Found You Book Tour

I am excited to be part of the book tour for the release of Ciara Geraghty’s new book, ‘Now That I’ve Found You’. Check out Handwritten Girl on Monday 19th January to read an interview with the author

'Now That I've Found You Book Tour

Now That I’ve Found You By Ciara Geraghty

'Now That I've Found You‘Now That I Found You’ is Ciara Geraghty’s latest book.

Forty-two-year-old Vinnie knows lots of things. He knows new books and school shoes are expensive. He knows his teenage daughter keeps getting into trouble and he knows his seven-year-old has wet the bed every night for over a year. What Vinnie doesn’t know is whether his wife is coming back, or if he will ever get better at single fatherhood. Ellen knows that what happened in the accident was all her fault. She knows she’s too scared to get behind the wheel of a car ever again and she knows that some scars are harder to hide than others. What Ellen doesn’t know is how to move on. And she doesn’t know anything about Vinnie, the taxi driver who drives her to physiotherapy every week. And neither of them knows they’re going to change the other’s life forever.

‘Now That I’ve Found You’, sees the welcome return of Irish author Ciara Geraghty. The story is about a couple who meet and are able to be there when things are hard and the sweet cover of the book empathises the poignancy of this Irish tale.

Vincent is a taxi driver who meets Ellen, he meets her weekly to bring her to her physiotherapy meetings. They have a professional relationship, where they don’t interact until one day Vincent has a panic attack and Ellen takes him to hospital. Appreciative of her help, Vincent thanks Ellen and their new friendship begins, both are lonely people with mutual problems in common, they find a companionship and an understanding in one another. The story is primarily seen through Vincent’s eyes, a single parent struggling with his teenage daughter who is rebelling against and his sweet little boy who is doing a countdown until his Holy Communion convinced that his mother, Paula will return after disappearing months ago.

The chapters with Ellen are comprised of letters that she writes to her husband Neil, we don’t know where he has gone in the story but under her doctors advice, she tells Neil her thoughts and tries to move on with life.

The story is about mental health, the issues of bipolar disorder and how it can go undiagnosed and the controversy that surrounds the illness. I loved the main characters, both quiet and troubled, I thought they complimented each other perfectly. Vincent is a gentleman, strong and silent, he works hard at being both father and mother and finds it difficult to accept that his little girl is growing up and this results in many arguments over the course of the story. Ellen spends most of her time alone, quiet and with her thoughts, she reminisces on the past and with her new friendship Vincent, we see her come alive and acquire a new passion in life.

As the story is quite a sweet but sad one, Ciara was included some gentle Irish humour into the tale with Vincent’s best friend and work colleague, Kenny, a trendy man with an eye for fashion and the ladies. There’s an genuine friendship between the two men as Kenny was aways there for him particularly after Paula disappeared. Vincent’s mother is also quite the character, always on the go and helping out at local charity events, she refuses to let her age slow her down and is a huge support for Vincent and his children.

A beautifully written story from the start, ‘Now That I’ve Found You’ is a heartwarming story of friendship and starting over. Filled with humour, love, fun characters and a dash of romance, I couldn’t put it down.

You can buy Now That I’ve Found You from Amazon and is available to buy from good bookshops.