RTÉ’s Sinéad Crowley: “The Belladonna Maze is very different from anything I’ve written before”

RTÉ journalist Sinéad Crowley said the key to writing novels while covering arts and entertainment for the national channel is “to really love it”.

The author tonight launched her latest book, The Belladonna Maze, at Dubray Books in Dublin’s Grafton Street and she has been chatted up with bestselling author Liz Nugent.

The exciting read has a double timeline and tells the story of a spooky old house in the west of Ireland from the famine to today.

The author said it’s very different from her previous books, but there’s still an element of mystery.

“It’s essentially a ghost story, it’s about a spooky old house in the west of Ireland and very different from anything I’ve written before,” she told Independent.ie.

“It’s still a mystery and there’s one person missing, so there’s a girl who’s missing from the house, but it’s not like the books I’ve written before that were about police procedures that were there was a guard and investigation.

“There’s a bit of romance in there, too.”

The journalist, who has two children, said she managed to write it by writing either very late at night or early in the morning.

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“I work in hourly blocks and I think if you’re a journalist you can split up pretty well,” Ms Crowley said.

“The simple answer is you have to love it, you have to really want it, it’s not easy and that’s the honest truth.

“You really just have to want it, it’s such a compulsion, it’s not easy.”

The bestselling authors Claudia Carroll and Sinéad Moriarty were also present at the presentation tonight.

Among the well-wishers was best-selling author Marian Keyes, who wished Ms. Crowley a “happy publication day”. She added on social media that the book looked great.

Liz Nugent said The Belladonna Maze is “Maeve Binchy-esque with ghosts and a bit of historical fiction.”

She added: “There’s a little bit of everything. There’s something in the book that will appeal to people who enjoy all genres, there’s something for everyone.”

Meanwhile, the ‘Skin Deep’ author said she has just finished her fifth novel, but it won’t be out until 2023.

Ms Nugent said the pandemic unknowingly inspired her latest novel as isolation is one of the main themes.

“You have to be in the world to write about the world, but I wasn’t there,” said the author.

“But there are places in my books where I write observations of human nature, but there wasn’t any of it because I didn’t observe it.

“It was only after I wrote it that I realized that one of the central themes of the book is isolation.

“There is a likeable protagonist [in this book] for the first time, at least I hope you like them! Which is new to me, because usually it’s people you like to hate. Even though she does something terrible in the opening chapter, you still learn to love her.”

https://www.independent.ie/entertainment/rtes-sinead-crowley-my-new-book-is-very-different-to-anything-ive-written-before-41618984.html RTÉ’s Sinéad Crowley: “The Belladonna Maze is very different from anything I’ve written before”

Fry Electronics Team

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