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Writing History with Marita Conlon-McKenna and Marianne Lee

5 November , 7:00 pm 8:00 pm GMT


Marita Conlon-McKenna and Marianne Lee

In Conversation with Breda Brown

In Partnership with National Library of Ireland

Tune in to this podcast, hosted by PR Director and co-founder at Unique Media, Breda Brown, for a discussion between best-selling historical fiction writer Marita Conlon-McKenna and debut historical fiction writer Marianne Lee. Marita Conlon-McKenna became a household name after the exceptional success of her Children of the Famine trilogy, beginning with Under the Hawthorn Tree. This year, the writer released The Hungry Road (Penguin), a novel for adult readers set during the Great Irish Famine. In her debut, A Quiet Tide (New Island), Marianne Lee breathes life into the personal story of Ellen Hutchins, a nineteenth century botanist who lived a rich but tormented life. Breda Brown will host a conversation between these two writers of historical fiction on the difficulties of, and reception to, historical novels.

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Marita Conlon-McKenna

Marita Conlon-McKenna is one of Ireland’s favourite authors. Her books include the award-winning Under the Hawthorn Tree which is set during Ireland’s great famine. Widely translated and published, it is now considered an Irish classic. Her other books include bestsellers The Magdalen and Rebel Sisters. She is a winner of the International Reading Association Award, USA and a former chairperson of Irish PEN.

Marianne Lee

Marianne Lee grew up in Tullamore, Co. Offaly and now lives in Dublin with her husband. She has a degree in Visual Communications from the National College of Art and Design and an MPhil in Creative Writing from Trinity College Dublin. Marianne works as a designer and copywriter and has published a selection of poetry as well as self-recorded an album of music. She sings Bach and paints landscapes. A Quiet Tide is her first novel.

Breda Brown

Breda Brown is the presenter of the Inside Books podcast. In each episode of Inside Books, Breda chats to people associated with the world of books – including well-known authors, publishers, editors, agents, critics, booksellers and more.

Interviewees have included local and international authors Rachael English, Martina Cole, Anthony Horowitz, Pat McCabe, Stephen McGann, Peter James, Alan Shatter, Jo Spain, Patricia Gibney, Peter Carey, Dermot Bolger, Mary Kenny, Martina Fitzgerald, Paul Howard, Sarah Webb, Emily Hourican, Stefanie Preissner and Catherine Fulvio. Industry names interviewed on Inside Books include Michael McLoughlin (Penguin), Vanessa Fox O Loughlin (, Declan Meade and Sarah Gilmartin (Stinging Fly), Lisa Coen and Sarah Davis Goff (Tramp Press), Maria Dickenson (Dubray Books) and Madeleine Keane (Sunday Independent Books Editor). Inside Books is available on all audio channels and the twitter handle is @InsideBooksIRE

A former print and radio journalist, Breda also reviews crime novels for the Sunday Independent, MCs and moderates events and contributes regularly to radio and TV programmes. She is also the co-founder of Unique Media, the communications firm that produces the Inside Books podcast.

This is a Podcast

The Dublin Book Festival is brightening up the cool autumn evenings with weekly events from Thursday 24th September until the beginning of the festival. With podcasts, poetry readings and crime-writing classes, you won’t want to miss this jam-packed series of events!

Join us as we take a seat with guests such as Christine Dwyer Hickey, Graham Norton, Dr Marie Cassidy, and Marita Conlon-McKenna and many more to discuss their riveting new books as well as a wide variety of topics, such as the career of a state pathologist, writing historical Irish fiction and how to write a best-selling crime fiction novel.

Click here to view the full programme of events for our Autumn Series.