Cora Harrison

Cora Harrison

Mullaghmore mountain on the Burren, County Clare, Ireland

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Cora Harrison writes from Ireland
Merry Christmas to you all. Yesterday I went out to cut holly and pine for the cottage and wore my lovely warm mittens - all the way from Canada - there was just a little bit of wet snow, but I felt very Christmassy, indeed.
Thank you all very much for such lovely gifts and for going to such trouble to see me.

Mon Dec 23 07:41:42 2013

Brenda writes from Canada
Merry Christmas Cora, greetings from your Canadian fans.
I hope you and yours enjoy a very festive holiday season.
I have just finished Cross of Vengeance and enjoyed it to the very last page.

Sun Dec 22 22:00:35 2013

Cora Harrison writes from Ireland
I think that the problem was that libraries in Ireland cancelled their orders and, of course, Easons is notorious for ordering big batches of books and then sending them back to the publisher - sometimes in not great condition - within weeks, on the grounds that they are not selling quickly enough. Of course, my books are not immediate best-sellers so Severn House find it much more profitable for them (and for me) to take orders from libraries in US and UK - and, indeed, Australia and New Zealand and sell the remainder off on Amazon and, I have just found out, the Book Depositary - and, of course Waterstones in England as you have found do take a certain number.

It's always a great puzzle to everyone that books about Ireland and a about an interesting part of Ireland's history seems not to be of interest to Irish libraries and booksellers.

Wed Dec 18 15:17:42 2013

margaret writes from mayo
Hi Cora,
Could you check with your publishers why your books are out of print in Ireland.
Will let you know how I get on, can't wait to get reading.

Tue Dec 17 19:38:18 2013

Cora Harrison writes from Ireland
Thanks for your message, Margaret. It's heart-warming to learn that you are prepared to go to so much trouble and expense.

I do hope that you enjoy them. Please let me know - I especially love to know whether readers have guessed the murderer early on or whether it remains a secret until Mara divulges her thought processes.

Tue Dec 17 14:44:05 2013

Margaret writes from Mayo
Hi Cora, thanks for your reply. It is very frustrating that your books are not available in Ireland. Readers from Ireland can check out Waterstones website (UK), they have lots of your books, second hand too at reasonable price. Prices are in Euro's. I have ordered four books from them and shipping will be €20.25 euro's. Really looking forward to reading them.
Margaret x

Tue Dec 17 14:39:56 2013

Cora Harrison writes from Ireland
I must say that I find it immensely frustrating that my native country are not bothering to stock books about a very important and interesting section of Irish history and about, I think, a very beautiful part of Ireland.
However, there is nothing that I can do about it. I can't force Easons to stock them or libraries to order them for the many people who write to me about it.
It would be interesting to know what a librarian would say to this and what reason they would give.

Tue Dec 17 12:49:10 2013

Margaret Devereux writes from Mayo
Hi Cora, I am finding it very difficult locating your books in Ireland. Have tried 2nd hand shops, internet & all the usual high street shops. They are available from UK websites, mostly hardback at very high cost. Is there a reason for their shortage in Ireland. Libraries only teenage novels none for adults.

Tue Dec 17 12:11:48 2013

Cora Harrison writes from Ireland
Yes, Norma, you're right. I've been looking up Amazon - I'm afraid that the paperback edition of 'Laws in Conflict' book 8 has gone out-of-print, the one for 'Chain of Evidence' should be out soon - best to get it quickly - my publisher never seems to print quite enough books - though I can understand that in these difficult times they prefer to underestimate than overestimate be left with a couple of thousand books to be stored expensively in the warehouse.

You haven't tried 'Kindle' at all, have you?
I initially thought that I wouldn't like it, but now I am completely converted. It's a great way of getting previously out-of-print books.

Mon Dec 16 13:25:54 2013

Norma Holland writes from Cornwall
Hi there,
I just love your Burren books. You have certainly added a whole new dimension to our visits of your area....Thank you so much...

I have been reading your books since they first came out and have noticed that the latest 3 are still hardback only.
Do you know if they will be issued in paperback eventually?
I do hope so as our meagre pensions over here don't allow for the buying of hardback books!
best wishes

Sun Dec 15 16:22:38 2013

Cora Harrison writes from Ireland
Yes, of course, that is correct about the turloughs. This year has been a dry autumn but generally by now places that were green fields in the summer are now lakes with swans floating on them.

Sorry to hear of your loss. It's interesting that your name is spelled with an a, rather than an o as would be more common here - O'Lochlainn or O'Loughlin.

Fri Nov 29 18:51:15 2013

Joe O'Laughlin writes from USA
NOT a farmer, so as a summer tourist I did not realize that the autumnal filling of the turloughs is one more incentive to flush the cows up onto the highlands to find grazing.
Bless the Burren Beo newsletter.

We have lost "the O'Laughlin" off our twig of the family tree.
My cousin Jim passed beyond my reach or email. Now [ I'M the O'Laughlin ]. Though little noted nor long regarded.

Looking forward.. etc.

Joe O'Laughlin

Fri Nov 29 18:39:20 2013

Cora Harrison writes from Ireland
Thanks, Clarke.

'Cross of Vengeance' is now out in the UK and should be out in the US soon.

After that will come 'Court of Inquiry' which I have completed and which is now been edited.

It's lovely to hear that you have enjoyed the books.

Mon Nov 18 19:14:18 2013

Clarke Richardson writes from USA
I have enjoyed your Irish mystery books so much! When may we expect another?

Mon Nov 18 18:11:04 2013





Issue: 15TH NOVEMBER 2013

Cross of Vengeance, Harrison, Cora (Author), Jan 2014. 224 p. Severn, hardcover, $28.95. (9780727883209).

An unusual and beguiling murder mystery set in a sixteenth-century Ireland that is as lovely, innocent, and enchanting as Camelot—until murder befouls the setting. Mara, the Burren Brehon (maker of judgments), is wise, patient, fair, and kind, but all of these qualities are tested when a band of religious pilgrims comes through the Burren. Soon after their arrival, the Kilnaboy religious relic, which is the Burren’s most important attraction, is defaced and burned. Then one of the pilgrims is found murdered, his body spread-eagled and naked in crucifixion pose behind Kilnaboy Church. Determined to find the killer, Mara is completely puzzled: How did someone kill the pilgrim, who was a big man, remove his clothes, and haul him to the site where he was found? Was the killer one of the pilgrims or, more frightening, someone from the Burren?
Cleverly written, atmospheric, captivating, and suspenseful, this is a unique murder mystery that’s sure to appeal to fans of historical mysteries.

Sat Nov 2 08:21:38 2013

Cora Harrison writes from Ireland
Many thanks for a lovely review - and that was well-spotted: the inclusion of the young Domhnall O'Davoren.

Anyone who is interested in Brehon law owes a huge debt of gratitude to Domhnall O'Davoren who, when professor of Cahermacnaghten Law School, got his scholars to copy out these laws of ancient Ireland - laws which now can be viewed in the document Egerton 88 in the British Library.

Across the top margin of the document is the heading in Latin and Irish: 'Mine is to begin and God's to finish - written for Domhnall Ua Duidbabhoirenn the night following St Brigid's feast 1569.'

I find these words incredibly moving when I think of what was to come to this remote part of Ireland and how its laws were derided and as many traces of them as possible completely swept away.

Sat Nov 2 08:18:58 2013

Prish Hawkes writes from England
I would just like to say that I thought the Cross of Vengence was exellent and I enjoyed reading it very much.
The poetic descriptions of the lanscape in the Burren are evocative and beautiful. The detailed research gives great depth and breadth to the setting in the sixteenth century . There are characters familiar to the reader and the intrduction of interesting new characters, particularly Domhnall O'Davoren (who later collected the historical writing and information on the Law).All these elements and characters developing within the storyline combine to make a wonderful read and a rattling good murder mystery which has you guessing until the last minute!
Thank you Cora!

Fri Nov 1 15:17:18 2013

Sinéad Callanan writes from Ireland
Well, thanks anyway, Cora! I'll let you know how it goes! (And it's a great pity about the Drumshee books.) I hope you and your husband have a good time!

Mon Oct 14 21:41:11 2013

Cora Harrison writes from Ireland
What an original idea for a work experience week! You have set yourself quite a task!
It's very nice of you to wish to meet me during that week, but unfortunately I shall be away. It's my husband's birthday - a very important one - and we shall be away celebrating.
I wish you the very best of luck - it's always nice to hear from those who enjoyed the dear old Drumshee books - now out-of-print, unfortunately.

Tue Oct 8 09:20:01 2013

Sinéad Callanan writes from Ireland
Hi Cora,

I sent you a story once in your children's storyclub and you gave me lovely feedback. I'm older now - Transition Year in school - but I still love all your books, and the Drumshee series were far and away my favourite books when I was younger, especially since I spend a lot of time in Clare (I live in Limerick).

I've got a weeks work experience coming up (21-25 October), and I've decided to 'be a writer' for the week! By the end of the week I plan to have one really good story ready for a competition. I had a story published with the Fighting Words supplement of the Irish Times when I was in 2nd year, and it would be great to see another story in print.

I know that even writers need a break from the page, so I thought it would be really cool if I could meet one of my favourite authors during the week for a cup of tea and a chat. But I will understand if you're busy, and maybe we can meet some other time!

Slán leat! Sinéad

Mon Oct 7 22:58:17 2013

Cora Harrison writes from Ireland
Brenda: It was lovely meeting you all and the time went in a flash. Hope I didn't delay you on your journey.

Noel & Evelyn: I'm afraid that I won't be of much use. Mara is a fictional character, though Domhnall O'Davoren - her grandson in my latest book, THE CROSS OF VENGEANCE - was a real person.

Domhnall O'Davoren was responsible for collecting a lot of the Brehon law as we know it today. He got his scholars at Cahermacnaghten to write it down and some of the results can be seen in the document called 'Egerton 88' in the British Library in London. I have seen it and was incredibly moved to see the scripts of the those scholars in the 1560s and on reading their funny comments and jokes in the margins felt as though the law school that I had invented had suddenly become almost a reality.

Thu Sep 19 10:31:59 2013

Noel & Evelyn O'Davoren Bon Te
Dear Cora,
My husband has enjoyed two of your Burren series mystery stories. He was most interested in the references to the O'Davoran family of your protagonist Mara.

We have visited the Burren and seen as much as one can see in 6 days, I realize that's just scraping the surface. Perhaps one day we may return for a longer visit.

After visiting the National Library in Dublin, only had two hours because of an early closing we realized that we needed help.

Our next stop was in Corofin to see Antoinette O'Brien at the Clare Heritage Centre. She was able to track my ancestors back to Michael O'Davoren b. 1810 who emigrated to America with one of his sons Jeremiah sometime during the famine (ca.1847).

We visited St. Mochua's Church and the O'Davoren Chapel, while there we spoke to Sean and Tessie O'Halloran of Noughaval caretakers for the new church. Sean took us to
the old homestead of the O'Davoren family about halfway between Noughaval and Cahermacnaghten.

As usual finding out a little bit about your ancestors leaves one with even more questions, the only resource available to me at present is the internet. Would you be so kind as to direct us in the proper direction.

Sincerely yours,
Evelyn & Noel

Wed Sep 18 20:40:53 2013

Brenda writes from Canada visiting Ireland
It was such a pleasure meeting you. It was so good of you to travel in such terrible weather. We look forward to reading "Cross of Vengeance" with a deeper understanding of our favourite character, Mara and the history of the Burren area. We hope you enjoy an ounce of pleasure from the Canadian treats as we have had pounds of enjoyment reading your books.
Cora, meeting you has been the highlight of our trip. Thank you so much.

Wed Sep 18 20:32:40 2013

Julian writes from USA
Hope I can get there some day. On our one trip to Ireland so far, my wife and I never got much farther west than Kilkenny and Glen Dalogh.

I checked a little further, and I think the mystery of the Latin name is solved. The guidebook you used must have had a corrupted version. On the Clare County Library website, under "The Burren: Corcomroe Abbey," the name given is "Sancta Maria de Petra Fertili," which is straightforward fairly late-style Latin.

Tue Sep 17 18:50:42 2013

Cora Harrison writes from Ireland
I'm glad that you enjoyed the story, Julian. The abbey is a very inspirational place and I was fascinated by the beautiful carving of the harebells (as I believe - though others think that they are bluebells).

Re the other matter - you may be right - I copied it from a guide book.

Tue Sep 17 18:20:46 2013

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