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Maida Vale Publishing

Sanctuary

Sanctuary

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By Niall McGrath

Fiction - Paperback

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Sanctuary is a fast moving, historical novel set in Ireland’s bloody past. This faction tells the true story of how Sarah Leigh's life in remote, rural Antrim is turned upside down when Terence stumbles out of a blizzard and into her life during yet another harsh winter and yet another Irish war. Sarah and Terence soon form a close bond, but he does not want to complicate it by divulging what he has endured.  It is Sarah's sister, Evelyn, who manages to coax the past from this mysterious stranger.

You can’t understand me without understanding my grandfather,” Terence tells, her, explaining how his own fate was shaped by that of the country boy Myles who, as Ireland's most handsome man, ended up in Rome, then becoming a favourite of Queen Elizabeth I, before returning home, to teeter on tightropes between loyalties demanded by church, state and people.

Terence must also, like his grandfather before him, tread a difficult path between the conflicting fealties of past and present. Terence’s lingering sense of guilt is at last assuaged when his family come under threat and he must summon all his resiliance to save them.

Niall McGrath is a Pushcart Prize nominated writer from County Antrim who has had fiction and poetry in journals widely. His previous work includes Heart of a Heartless World and The Way of Tenderness. 

A fast moving, colourful epic about Ulster’s often bloody past. Has the ring of authenticity and genuine emotional intensity.  Maurice Leitch, novelist

‘Sanctuary’ is epic in its sense of place and shifting historical perspective, packed with strong and memorable characters, who lead us dreamlike through a violent period of Irish history, beguiling and intriguing at every turn of the page, to a breath-taking ending. McGrath is on sure ground, a wonderful read. -  Gary Allen, novelist and poet

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