The renowned author Mary Pat Kelly (who has penned both ‘Galway Bay’ & ‘Of Irish Blood’) explains in a recent interview with The Irish Times newspaper that it was the sceptical attitude of her in-laws that drove her seek out her Irish heritage.
And in the process, she came to realise that her own family background within Ireland could form the basis for a sweeping historical novel called Galway Bay to be followed up by the sequel, Of Irish Blood.
The article gives an insight into what was involved in her delving into her Irish roots culminating in her arrival at her ancestral homestead:
“Finally on a June morning in 2002, with the sun shining bright on Galway Bay, I stood on the strand at Bearna/Freeport, the piece of Ireland that was mine. There had once been a fishing village here where my great-great grandmother Honora Keeley was born in 1822 and where she married Michael Kelly in 1839. The home place.
Honora started talking to me that day and her life and the history of my family became the basis for my historical novel Galway Bay and the sequel, Of Irish Blood.”
Read the article in full here: http://www.irishtimes.com/culture/books/mary-pat-kelly-on-writing-her-way-back-to-her-roots-1.2327965
Image source: http://www.derryplayhouse.co.uk/news/article/mary-pat-kelly-to-launch-of-irish-blood-at-the-playhouse/285