What Is Claire Allan Reading?

Three books to add to your READING LIST this summer …


Originally from Co Derry, Claire Allan is the author of eight novels, the latest of which is Her Name Was Rose. The thriller is published this week on Thursday June 28 and tells the story of Emily who witnesses a tragic accident and becomes obsessed with the dead girl’s life and family. It’s a pitch perfect holiday read. We’ve asked Allan for her own holiday recommendations…


The Retreat by Mark Edwards, Thomas & Mercer.

The premise of this story, a thriller set in a writing retreat, is what drew me to this book. Once I started reading, I was unable to put it down, even at the really scary bits! The book tells the story of a horror writer staying at a retreat in rural Wales, but the house has seen its share of tragedy. The owner, Julia, lost her husband and eight-year-old daughter in an apparent drowning two years before – but her daughter’s body has never been found and Julia believes she is still alive. Fast paced, gripping, emotional and scary, this is a first rate read.

Almost Love by Louise O’Neill, Quercus.

Louise O’Neill is probably the most talked about writer in Ireland at the moment, and Almost Love is her first foray into writing fiction for adults. (Although many adults have read and enjoyed her previous YA books).

The tale of a toxic love affair and how it invades every aspect of a 24-year-old art teacher’s life is at turns disturbing, devastating and redemptive. It makes for an uncomfortable but gripping read, with the central character of Sarah being one I don’t think I will forget in a hurry.

The Rules of Seeing by Joe Heap, Harper Collins.

I’ve been very lucky to get an advance copy of this stunning debut from Joe Heap. Following the story of two women who form an unlikely friendship, it also has a tense subplot which really does give the book that extra edge.

Nova has been blind from birth, but is offered the chance to see with a pioneering new surgery. But learning to see is not as simple as it may sound. Nova is pulled from the safe world she has always known and has to learn how to live all over again. She meets Kate, who is recovering from a bleed on the brain, while in hospital and the pair help each other see what really matters.

This book is simply exquisite.


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