A bestseller in the UK, this moving debut novel is a modern Philomena story of love, both lost and found.
Secrets can’t last forever. . . .
In a crumbling mansion in a small Irish village in County Wicklow, two elderly sisters, Ella and Roberta O’Callaghan, live alone in Roscarbury Hall with their secrets, memories, and mutual hatred. Long estranged, the two communicate only by terse notes. But when the sisters are threatened with bankruptcy, Ella defies Roberta’s wishes and converts the mansion's old ballroom into a café.
Much to Roberta’s displeasure, the café is a hit and the sisters are reluctantly drawn back into the village life they abandoned decades ago. But gossip has a long life. As the local convent comes under scrutiny, the O’Callaghan sisters find themselves caught up in an adoption scandal that dates back to the 1960s and spreads all the way across the Atlantic Ocean.
Only by overcoming their enmity and facing up to the past can they face the future together—but can they finally put their differences behind them?
Ann O’Loughlin is a leading journalist in Ireland and has covered all major news events of the past three decades, including the Irish orphan scandal. She was a security correspondent at the height of the Troubles and was a senior journalist at the Irish Independent and Evening Herald. She is currently a senior journalist with the Irish Examiner newspaper covering legal issues. She lives on the east coast of Ireland with her husband and two children
"Unraveled family secrets are rewoven into bittersweet truth in this poignant debut. . . . Making use of her experience reporting the actual adoption scandalin which tens of thousands of babies were sold off by nunsO’Loughlin metes out revelations, both painful and redeeming." Publishers Weekly
"Ann O’Loughlin has spun a masterful tale with The Secrets of Roscarbury Hall, a story full of secrets and dark memories . . . Beautiful story.”—Manhattan Book Review (5 stars)
"A delicious novel, filled with the joys and sorrows only humans can cook up. O'Loughlin has written a tale of sisterhood in all its formssiblings, nuns, and strangers who appear out of the blue to become your family when you need one the most. Best read with a cuppa tea and warm scone, drizzled with sugar icing, sprinkled with lemon zest. Sweet and sour. Just like the women in Roscarbury Hall." Mary Hogan, bestselling author of Two Sisters and The Woman in the Photo
A lovely story of two women with the courage to confront the injustices of the past, bringing light to a dark corner of Ireland’s recent history.” Kathleen MacMahon, bestselling author of This Is How It Ends
Warm and engaging . . . I loved journeying through the lives of these fascinating characters. A beautifully drawn, skillfully written, well-researched novel.” Kate Kerrigan, New York Times bestselling author of the Ellis Island Trilogy
Secrets emerge, there’s a whopper of a twist, and this unabashed tear-jerker ends with a well-earthed, well-calculated emotional finale.” Irish Times
Highly engaging.” Irish Independent
Deftly written, moving, and courageous.” Sunday Times
A moving tale of loss, love, and redemption.” Bella Books
A superb read.” Kim the Bookworm
Powerfull and poignant . . . a moving story of love lost and found. . . . Will enthrall and delight its readers.” Tracy Shepard
A touching story and will no doubt touch the heart of many people across the world.” Book Love Bug
A poignant tale of secrets which damage the bond between familiestold with an unpredictability that made this book impossible to put down.” Reviewed by the Book
A thought-provoking and poignant read.” Jera’s Jamboree
A truly heartfelt tale . . . a wonderfully written book that I cannot praise highly enough!” Cosmochicklitan