I am pleased to welcome Patrick Taylor who has graciously written a guest post to share here today. Patrick Taylor is the author of the new book, An Irish Country Girl.
Dea Duit, that’s Hello from me, Patrick Taylor, author of the An Irish Country series of novels. The first three, Country Doctor, Country Village, and Country Christmas, number 5 Country Courtship which is ready for typesetting, and number 6 which is at chapter 17 which will get attention when I finish this blog, are all set in the 1960s in Rural Northern Ireland where I grew up, graduated as a physician, and for a while was a rural GP.
The fourth in the series, An Irish Country Girl is a complete departure. It tells the story of Maureen “Kinky” Kincaid née O’Hanlon who is the motherly housekeeper to Doctor Fingal Flahertie O’Reilly in all the other Country books. Girl is set in County Cork in the 1920s and tells of Maureen’s coming of age, her falling in love, and her close encounter with the Irish supernatural. It explains why she is fey. Fey, you may well ask, what’s that? Kinky has the sight, as Stephen King might say, “The Shining.”
Now why would a man who spent nearly 40 years in medical research, a man trained to be skeptical of anything that cannot be proved by testing, why would such a person believe in such superstitious nonsense?
In part because my own Grandmother had the sight. How else could she have suddenly announced, “Maggie’s dead.” Her younger sister. It wasn’t until some time later that the phone call came to say my great aunt had passed at almost exactly the time Granny had made he announcement.
In part because of a wonderful history teacher, Miss Maud Tipping who introduced me to the Knights of the Red Branch an English re-telling of one of the great cycles of Irish mythology, the tale of Cúchulain of Ulster and his knights and their fight with Queen Maeve of Connacht as she strove to steal Donn the great brown bull of Ulster. That introduction was enough to turn a nine-year-old into a life long student of Irish mythology and Irish history.
And perhaps because in the words of contributor to a massive work, Visions and Beliefs in the West of Ireland: Collected and Arranged by Lady Gregory… “There’s no doubt at all but that there’s the same sort of things in other countries…But you hear more about them in these parts, because the Irish do be more familiar in talking of them.” And I am Irish.
My best wishes to the book club.
Slan leat, that’s fare well,
About the Book: AN IRISH COUNTRY GIRL from Patrick Taylor's Website:
Readers of Patrick Taylor’s books know Mrs. Kinky Kincaid as the unflappable house-keeper who looks after two doctors in the colourful Irish village of Ballybucklebo. She is a trusted fixture in the lives of those around her, and it often seems as though Kinky has always been there.About the author from Patrick Taylor's Website:
Nothing could be further from the truth.
Some forty-odd years before and many miles to the south a girl who would someday be Kinky Kincaid was Maureen O’Hanlon, a farmer’s daughter growing up in the green hills and glens of County Cork. A precocious girl on the cusp of womanhood, Maureen has a head full of dreams, a heart open to romance, and something more: a gift for seeing beyond the ordinary into the mystic realms of faeries, spirits, and even the dreaded Banshee, whose terrifying wail she hears on a snowy night in 1922…
As she grows into a young woman, Maureen finds herself torn between love and her fondest aspirations, for the future is a mystery even for one blessed with the sight. Encountering both joy and sorrow, Maureen at last finds herself on the road to Ballybucklebo—and the strong and compassionate woman she was always destined to become.
The author Patrick Taylor now lives in Cootehall County Roscommon, Eire. Taylor is a distinguished medical research worker, off-shore sailor, model boat-builder and seannachie.
Born in 1941, Taylor was brought up in Bangor, Northern Ireland, and receieved his medical education in Ulster. He initially practiced in a rural Ulster village akin to Ballybucklebo before taking specialist training in Obstetrics and Gynaecology. After living in Belfast through the first two years of the recent Irish Troubles (1969-1994) he and his family emigrated to Canada where he pursued a career in medical research and teaching in the field of human infertility. His contributions have been honoured with three lifetime achievement awards including the Lifetime Award of Excellence of the Canadian Fertility and Andrology Society.
A talent for the written word, first recognized when he was 16 by his winning the “Campbellian Prize for Literature”, led to an outpouring of contributions to the medical literature. His scientific works include 170 papers and six textbooks, one translated from the original French. For ten years, (1991-2001) he was editor-in-chief of the Canadian Obstetrics and Gynaecology journal.
To add leavening to dry, academic prose Taylor has always nurtured his creative side. His monthly medical humour columns which began in 1991, En Passant, Medicine Chest and Taylor’s Twist were followed by his appointment as book reviewer to Stitches: The Journal of Medical Humour.
In the mid-nineties, encouraged by his long time friend Jack Whyte, author of the best-selling Dream of Eagles series, Taylor began to write serious fiction. A number of works, all set in Northern Ireland, have now been published; A short-story collection, Only Wounded:Ulster Stories, and two novels, Pray for Us Sinners and The Apprenticeship of Doctor Laverty, (short listed for the BC Book awards fiction prize 2005). Now and in the Hour of Our Death, the sequel to Pray for Us Sinners appeared in October 2005. He is now under contract to Tom Doherty and Associates of New York to produce a series of novels featuring Featuring Doctor Laverty. The first, An Irish Country Doctor appeared in Feb 07, the second, An Irish Country Village in Feb 08. An Irish Country Christmas in October 08. An Irish Country Girl will be released in Feb 10. He is now working on An Irish Country Partnership for Feb 2011.
An expert navigator, Taylor has been a member of off-shore racing crews. His race reports, including his account of a recent Victoria to Maui challenge complement his frequent contributions of sailing humour to boating magazines.
Two of his models, Rattlesnake a three-masted frigate and the schooner Bluenose are on display in the local pub on Bowen Island, a small island off Vancouver.
~GIVEAWAY~Thanks to Forge Books, I have one copy of An Irish Country Girl to give away!
- Open to U.S. and Canada Only.
- Make sure to include your email address so that I can contact you in case you win! Otherwise, I won't be able to include your name in the drawing.
- Giveaway ends, April 5, 2010. I'll use random.org to choose a winner.