Irene McInerney

Down by the Sandy Gardens

Oown by the Sandy Gardens

When Irish Eyes Aren’t Smiling

Born and raised in the countryside of Kilmaley, amongst the hills of County Clare in the west of Ireland, Irene apparently lives an idyllic life. Yet, unseen by the outside world, her life, and that of her siblings, is forever marred by the whims of an irrational mother who, in an arranged marriage, married not for love but for fortune. This forges a strong bond between Irene, her two brothers and sister, which sustains them through the difficult times.

Reaching puberty at an early age—before the end of primary school—Irene struggles through a brief stint at boarding school. Then, at the age of fourteen, she falls in love with a man more than twice her age. This leads to a parish scandal and, years later, to a secret romance that is thwarted by a jealous friend.

Introduced to the corporate world when she is employed as a secretary, Irene moves to the city. She seeks love, though nothing lives up to her past experience. She continues to struggle to meet her mother’s expectations. She endures a troubled life, discovering what love really means when she is reunited with her original sweetheart. Unfortunately, this reunion is short lived. Her involvement with another man leads her to a dark place, and she has to make some difficult decisions. Her dark and troubled relationship careers into a hellish nightmare that changes her life forever.

An ancient land beckons.


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