Similar authors to follow
Manage your follows
About Jean Grainger
USA TODAY BESTSELLING AUTHOR
SELECTED BY BOOKBUB READERS IN TOP 19 OF HISTORICAL FICTION BOOKS.
WINNER OF THE 2016 AUTHOR'S CIRCLE HISTORICAL NOVEL OF EXCELLENCE
'Warm and wise, reading a Jean Grainger novel is like sitting in the kitchen of a friend. Her authentic writing welcomes you into the heart of Ireland.' Kate Kerrigan, NYT Bestselling Author.
'In the same magical tradition as classic Irish storytellers, Maeve Binchy and Frank McCourt, Jean Grainger transports the reader into a world where the characters not only come alive, but become friends, who stay with you long after you've closed the last page. I have no doubt that Jean Grainger will be considered one of the finest historical novelists of our time.' Roberta Kagan, Bestselling author of 'All My Love, Detrick' series.
Hello and thanks for taking time out to check out my page. If you're wondering what you're getting with my books then think of the late great Maeve Binchy but sometimes with a historical twist. I was born in Cork, Ireland in 1971 and I come from a large family of storytellers, so much so that we had to have 'The Talking Spoon', only the person holding the spoon could talk!
I have worked as a history lecturer at University, a teacher of English, History and Drama in secondary school, a playwright, and a tour guide of my beloved Ireland. I am married to the lovely Diarmuid and we have four children. We live in a 200 year old stone cottage in Mid-Cork with my family and the world's smallest dogs, called Scrappy and Scoobi..
My experiences leading groups, mainly from the United States, led me to write my first novel, 'The Tour'. My observances of the often funny, sometimes sad but always interesting events on tours fascinated me. People really did confide the most extraordinary things, the safety of strangers I suppose. It's a fictional story set on a tour bus but many of the characters are based on people I met over the years.
The sequel to The Tour, called Safe at the Edge of the World, follows Conor O'Shea once again as he takes another motley crew on a tour of Ireland. This time with a very odd couple aboard who seem to be hiding something.
The third Tour book in that series is called The Story of Grenville King and in it Conor gets an opportunity to renovate and run an old castle as a five star resort, but something isn't quite right, and the castle has many secrets.
The fourth Conor O'Shea book is called The Homecoming of Bubbles O'Leary and features a group of friends taking their friend Bubbles home to Ireland from New York, on last time. The next book is based on a chance conversation with a friend about the reality of DNA testing and the truths it might revel unwittingly. It's called Finding Billie Romano and the sixth book finds Conor and his pals in dire financial straits and the only life line is a reality TV show in the castle, something Conor hates the idea of but needs must!
My first World War 2 novel, 'So Much Owed' is a family saga based in Ireland following the Buckley family of Dunderrig House. The story opens in the trenches of WW1 at the end of the war and moves to tranquil West Cork. As the next generation of the Buckley family find themselves embroiled once again in war, the action moves from Ireland to wartime Belfast, from occupied France to the inner sanctum of German society in neutral Dublin. The history of the period was my academic specialty so I'm delighted to be able to use it in a work of fiction.
Shadow of a Century, is set in New York in 2015 as well as in Dublin during the events of Easter Week 1916, where Irish men and women fought valiantly to rid our island of British Imperialism. While not my academic specialty, I loved researching this book. My husband, most fortunately for me is an expert on this era and so I didn't have to go too far for assistance. The story features three very strong women, united through a battered old flag. Its essentially a love story, but with a bit of intrigue thrown in for good measure.
Under Heaven's Shining Stars, was published in 2016 and is set in my home city of Cork. This time its against the backdrop of 1950s and 60s Ireland and it really is a book about friendship, family and the Catholic church. I have a deep personal affinity with all of my characters but this book is especially close to my heart.
A book I wrote while travelling with my family for a year in Australia is called Sisters of the Southern Cross and don't forget to read the afterword on that one as to how that story came about, its a tale stranger than fiction in its own right!
I wrote a novel called Letters of Freedom after hearing a woman on the radio one day explaining how being raised in state care prepared a person so poorly for the realities of independent living. Her story was so moving I was inspired to write a short novella there and then.
Carmel's story really seemed to touch people, and I got such a huge reaction from readers all over the world, many of them telling me the most extraordinary stories from their own lives, I wrote a sequel. The Future's Not Ours To See, which follows Carmel as she ventures forth into a world she knows so little of is out now. The third Carmel and Sharif book, What Will be, is also available and it finishes the story of this woman who spent her entire childhood believing something that wasn't true. She returns to Ireland, very reluctantly and discovers that in order to go forward she has to first make peace with her past.
My next series, The Robinswood Story, opens with What Once Was True, and tells the story of a big old house in Co Waterford during WW2. Two families live there, the impoverished Keneficks who own it and the hard-working Murphys who work for them. Life has remained unchanged for centuries but when war comes, it means everything changes and people have to question what once was true. This book was selected by Bookbub readers as in the top 19 Historical Fiction books of 2018. The sequel to this, Return to Robinswood, continues the story and the final instalment, Trials and Tribulations takes it to it's conclusion.
The Star and the Shamrock, the Emerald Horizon, The Hard Way Home and The World Starts Anew is a series of four books about two little German Jewish children who find themselves on the Kindertransport out of Berlin. They end up in Northern Ireland and it was a real labour of love. The research was harrowing at times, but I hope I've done justice to the stories of so many children who escaped the Nazi terror, often never again to see their parents. This is a book of hope in dark times, of the enduring power of love and the incredible resilience of the human spirit.
My current series, The Queenstown Series, centres on twelve year old Harp Devereaux and her mother Rose and the first book opens on the day Titanic sails from Queenstown, Co Cork on her last fateful journey. It is a bestselling series and people really seem to connect to the precocious Harp and her hard-working mother as they battle to survive in a society where conforming and playing by the rules was paramount. It is so far a three book series, The West's Awake, and The Harp and the Rose being the next two books but I'm currently writing book four.
Many of the people who have reviewed my books have said that you get to know the characters and really become attached to them, that's wonderful for me to hear because that's how I feel about them too. I grew up on Maeve Binchy and Deirdre Purcell and I aspired to being like them. If you buy one of my books I'm very grateful and I really hope you enjoy it. If you do, or even if you don't, please take the time to post a review. Writing is a source of constant contentment to me and I am so fortunate to have the time and the inclination to do it, but to read a review written by a reader really does make my day.
Customers Also Bought Items By
Books By Jean Grainger
There are some days when being the Garda Sergeant of a small Irish town really tests me. Having to police my family and friends is a necessary evil, but when I’m faced with arresting half the children in the town, and discovering someone close to me among the offenders, well, those days I really wish I’d chosen a different career.
Irate parents are not my only problem unfortunately, as I’m then called to manage a baying mob of strangers, bearing placards and demanding change. I’m all for peaceful protest, but these people were threatening the vulnerable, and I’m just not having that.
So, after a very long week, I just want to go home and put my feet up, when a dramatic, decades-old secret is revealed. It shocks everyone in the family to the core, and it feels like everywhere I turn, where once there was trust and honesty, now there are nothing but lies.
I usually know what to do for the best, but faced with this, I’m unsure. Should I trust my instincts and bend the rules, or should I apply the law to the letter?
New from USA TODAY Bestselling author, Jean Grainger,
One House, two families and a war that changes everything that once was true....
Robinswood, Co Waterford, 1939.
The once grand house is home to two very different families.Despite delusions of grandeur, Lord and Lady Kenefick and their adult children, live a life of decayed opulence as the money needed to keep such a large house and grounds ever dwindles.
Meanwhile, the Murphy family, Dermot, Isabella and their three almost grown up girls, live and work on the estate and do their best to keep everything running smoothly.
Social structure is vital. Everyone knows their place, but as war looms, both families find themselves drawn into the conflict and begin questioning everything that once was true.
From the leafy grounds of an Irish stately home, to the bombed out streets of London in the Blitz, allow yourself to be swept away once more in Jean Grainger’s latest bestselling historical saga.
USA Today bestselling author Jean Grainger has done it again.
One Irish house, two very different families, and a war that changed everything.
Robinswood Estate, County Waterford, Ireland. 1946.
Years of neglect and abandonment have left the family seat of the Keneficks almost derelict, but the new Lord Kenefick and his charming young wife Kate, are determined to breathe life into the old house once more.
The war is over and they have survived, so now they must set about making a bright future for themselves and their family. But the shadows of the past are ever lurking, and there are many who are not willing to see the new Lady Kenefick as anything more than the housekeeper's daughter.
Kate’s family, the Murphys, find themselves once more, inextricably entwined with both the Keneficks and Robinswood, but this time everything is different. Or at least they hope it is.
The legacy of the war cannot be erased, and the events of those fateful years will not be forgotten. Can Robinswood provide a haven for those who need it, or are the scars of the past too deep?
Return to Robinswood is the second book in The Robinswood Story.
What reviewers are saying:
'Grainger manages to seamlessly weave a rich history, a beautiful landscape and characters you care deeply about into a rattling good story that will leave you hungry for more.'
'I love Jean Grainger novels, I feel like I'm actually there, in Ireland with people I care about so much. She has a rare gift.'
'You know those books you read slowly towards the end, to make them last? Jean Grainger books are like that.'
USA Today Bestselling author Jean Grainger wants to take you to Ireland.
Guide Conor O’Shea has given hundreds of tours, and doesn’t expect this one to be any different, taking take a bus full of strangers through Ireland’s most colorful and iconic locations.
The passengers couldn’t be more different—a Wall Street banker, a man-hunting serial divorcee, a love-hungry cop and a very old lady with an incredible secret—but each wants something, and they all have something to hide.
Conor’s avoided conflict his whole life, but with every stop, his passengers uncover secrets and face truths that will change their lives.
Can Conor continue to watch from the sidelines? Or is he brave enough to face his own problems?
Witty, informative, and with a touch of romance, The Tour is as colourful and turbulent as the wild Atlantic coast. You’ll get an insider look at one of the world’s most beautiful places, as you take a tour you’ll never forget as you navigate the stunning vistas of gorgeous Ireland along with the hearts and minds of a cast of characters who will live with you, long after you've finished the last page.
Can you afford to miss the trip of a lifetime?
Robinswood Estate, County Waterford, 1950
Three sisters, the three men that love them, and a house that could consume them all.
Assuming their roles as the new Lord and Lady Kenefick and returning to Robinswood with the plan to drag it back from the brink of dereliction, is taking its toll on Kate and Sam. With a young family to raise, a very limited budget and only Kate’s parents to help, the task seems insurmountable.
Kate’s eldest sister Eve and her husband Bartley have found happiness in each other after some dark years, but when a face from the past appears, it seems that everything they have worked so hard to create is threatened.
Aisling, the middle sister, is being evasive and the family suspect something is very wrong. On the face of it, she has it all, a lovely husband, a comfortable house and a supportive family, but she is in deep trouble, and nobody can even guess at the real reason why.
Meanwhile Lady Lillian, Sam’s sister, is useless and arrogant, refusing to accept that things have changed and that her title is not going to get her what she wants, least of all from her husband Beau.
In the midst of it all Dermot and Isabella Murphy try their best to maintain a life and a home for their family, but the trials and tribulations of life at Robinswood might just tear them all apart. .
My twelve-year-old daughter frequently moans that Ballycarrick is the most boring town in Ireland.
Nothing ever happens here.
And as the local police sergeant, this is something I’m delighted about.
I’ve enough to worry about - the polar ice-caps, the evil monster that’s shrinking my trousers, not to mention the hot flushes - without having to be like one of those gritty Netflix cops, chasing criminals down alleyways and busting drug deals.
So, life is calm and fairly predictable.
Until something unthinkable happens in our sleepy backwater.
A crime, but not like anything I've ever seen before.
It's a complete mystery.
And it's up to me to solve it.
Carmel Sheehan was raised in an orphanage in Dublin, and always believed what she was told, that her unmarried mother abandoned her as a newborn.
Forty years later, living in rural Ireland, in an unfulfilling marriage, and she has no reason to suspect that version of her past was untrue, until she gets a Facebook message one day from a stranger claiming it was all lies.
In this gripping story, Carmel begins a journey of discovery that takes her back to a time long before she was born when love and loyalty, betrayals and secrets decided her fate. The reality of her true story is both shocking and heartwarming, and Carmel learns that in order to go forward, she must first make peace with her past.
The arrival of someone new is always a cause for twitching curtains and whispered conversations.
But here, like everywhere, people have their secrets, and as the local sergeant I’m expected to have my eyes peeled for anything unusual.
And I do.
Until I don’t, and the consequences are potentially fatal.
Erich Bannon is happy in the small Irish village he has thought of as home since he arrived as a terrified, traumatised seven year old, one of the last Jewish children to escape Berlin in 1939. Now at twenty-three, it feels like all of his friends are drawn to The Promised Land, and he can understand why, but Israel is not for him.
One by one, they leave, and Erich is bereft. He feels lost but a chance encounter with an Irish Catholic girl gives him hope. All he and Róisín want is to be allowed to love each other but the traditions and rules of their backgrounds forbid it. By the time he learns that Róisín wasn’t honest with him about her family, and what kind of people they really are, it is too late and he finds himself unwittingly embroiled in a dangerous world from which there seems to be no escape.
When Róisín disappears, events take a sinister turn and Erich wonders if their relationship really was all he thought it was.. Reluctant to place his family in danger, he has to solve his problems alone, something he’s never had to do before. From rural Ireland, to the glitz of 1950’s America, from the orange groves of Israel to the dark streets of post-war Liverpool, The World Starts Anew, is the fourth book in the best-selling Star and the Shamrock series.
Kilteegan Bridge, Co Cork, Ireland. 1975
Lena Kogan is thrilled when her son Emmet invites her to the opening of his first building in San Francisco. It’s awkward that she will be staying with Emmet’s father Malachy Berger, but he’s in a serious relationship now, and anyway, he knows how Lena feels about Eli, so surely they can just be friends.
Her sister Emily, is less adventurous. She's happy to stay at home with her family and a thriving business, that is until her daughter Nellie drops another bombshell on her about what she plans to do next. A move nobody could have anticipated and few support.
Her brother Jack is living contentedly on his farm with Skipper, until a couple of late-night visitors cause them to risk everything they’ve guarded so carefully. Intervening to help could mean exposure in a state where men like them are on the wrong side of the law, but some things are just too important to ignore.
In this final book of The Kilteegan Bridge Story, the O’Sullivans come to a silent understanding of each other and of themselves.
Two people on the run. An Irish bus tour, and a story you'll never forget.
USA TODAY BEST SELLING AUTHOR TAKES YOU TO IRELAND.
A tranquil Irish vacation, music, scenery, food... but someone on this tour has a secret he's desperate to keep concealed.
Sequel to the #1 Bestseller, The Tour.
When a shadowy couple turn up on Conor O’Shea’s grand tour of Ireland, the tranquility of Ireland’s landscape acts as a shelter against the stormy reality of the life they left behind.
On the run from a notorious mob boss, this mysterious couple flees the U.S. in search of sanctuary on the shores of the Emerald Isle, hoping to blend in with the tourists. In their wake lies a mafia family’s secrets and a scarred priest torn between his duty to the cloth and to the truth.
Intriguing and uniquely consuming, Father Declan Sullivan’s tale of destiny and duty lies at the feet of those he has betrayed. Can distance and deliverance save the innocent in their desperate pursuit for peace, or will evil catch up to them all?
In Safe at the Edge of the World, author Jean Grainger captures the soothing beauty of Ireland in the lives of those fleeing a criminal bent on revenge.
Kilteegan Bridge, Ireland. 1975
Despite the best efforts to the older generation to maintain standards, short skirts, long hair and loud music are all the rage in Kilteegan Bridge.
Emmet Kogan has set his sights on an education at the prestigious Stanford University in California, while his cousin Nellie also longs to get away, but for very different reasons. If she’s to escape too, it will mean wrapping herself in a web of lies, but it’s a price she’s willing to pay.
Lena and Eli are terrified they will lose their boy to the bright lights of America forever, while Emily and Blackie make a decision to keep a dangerous secret, despite knowing the damage such duplicity can do.
On the exciting streets of 1970s San Francisco, two young Irish people have to learn to navigate this new world of wonderful opportunities and dangerous vices, and learn that no matter how open and accepting a society is, there are always rules.
Rules that if broken, carry a heavy penalty.
- ←Previous Page
- Next Page→