LARA HARTE


About This Site

Welcome to my website. Here you will find details of all my books, and a brief guide to each of them based on most frequently asked questions. I have written four novels, two of which are historical: Honour Bound, and Wild Geese, and two of which, Losing It, and First Time are classed as contemporary, though as they were published in the 1990s, theyíre probably quite historical by now. My latest novel, Honour Bound, is published by Banyan Tree Books, New Delhi. Iím delighted that it found a home with an Indian publisher, as most of it is set in India at the height of the British Raj. It is based on the life of Michael Mallin, one of the leaders of Irelandís 1916 Rising which led to the establishment of the Irish Republic, and tells the story of Mallin as a young Irish soldier whose experiences in the British Army lead him into a questioning of his duty and inspire him to become a revolutionary leader. It is my most ambitious work to date, and in 2004, I was awarded an Arts Council Bursary to support my work on it.

About Me

I was born in 1975 and grew up in Dublin, attending an all-Irish speaking primary school and an English-speaking secondary school, a multi-lingual experience which has left me with a facility for picking up languages easily. I have a BA in French and English, and learned Spanish in 2001 as part of a challenge to promote the European Year of Languages. I work as a librarian.

I began my writing career young, having written my first novel First Time when I was 18, something people still remember me for, though now that Iím in my thirties and have written three more books, it really does feel like a long, long time ago! All my books have been different, as I like to challenge myself and try out different ideas, styles and genres. Hence, my settings have ranged from modern Dublin to eighteenth-century Dublin and Paris and nineteenth-century India. The common strand between them is that the protagonists are all thoughtful young adults who feel like outsiders in society and struggle to find their place in it during the course of their experiences.

I read widely, but do not have a favourite author or a favourite book. My sole criterion is good writing. I will read anything as long as the writing is good, and never judge a book by its cover or genre-label. I have read science-fiction that is edgier and more sophisticated than some of what passes for hard-hitting literary fiction, and Iíve found supposedly outdated historical romances that feature the kind of strong female characters that put the Bridget Joneses of modern chick-lit to shame. I loathe the current publishing trend that demands that women writers tailor their work to fit the chick-lit moniker. To me, shoe-shopping is a form of torture, not escapist, aspirational fun. And as for the maxim that Mr Right makes Everything Alright, isnít that the kind of cultural poison that promotes traditional subservience rather than independence? So no, itís not for me. But thereís nothing like a good book. . . .

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