"I name this book Finding Lauren. May God bless her and all who read her".The book...
A conspiracy of blackmail, corruption and family intrigue, set in 2005 set against the violent backdrop of the Northern Ireland of the 1970s and ’80s.
It opens in County Antrim in the home of the central character, seventy nine-year old widow Regina Monteith, who has long since buried her only son, William. We meet her as she is prepares to endure the eightieth birthday celebrations planned by her neighbour and home help, Betty. Regina must ensure two things before she surrenders to the cancer which is slowly killing her – that the surprising fortune she has amassed over the years is passed on according to her wishes, and that the family secret, which could threaten this – the existence of William’s illegitimate daughter – goes with her to the grave.
Across the county, her estranged brother’s daughter, Cordelia Harcourt, begins the task of sorting out her dead parents’ papers, and stumbles upon confirmation that William had fathered a child to a singer, more than thirty years ago, when he was starting his career in the RUC. The existence of the child, or her mother, had never been acknowledged. Driven by an inherited sense of righting a perceived injustice, Cordelia takes an emotionally painful journey through her own past and enlists the help of an old college friend of the lover who irrevocably changed her own life.
Told partly in flashbacks to the late 1960s, the search for Lauren takes them all through the archives of some of the bloodiest and most controversial days in the history of the North. It will prove a journey in which all the characters learn more about themselves and on finally finding Lauren they discover that the idealistic, ill-fated lovers of Cordelia’s imagination must be supplanted by a relationship which is a metaphor for all that was brutal, shameful and needlessly lost in a troubled era of Ireland’s social history
Felicity McCallThe publisher
"I am a freelance writer, arts facilitator, actor, film producer and co-founder of the Derry-based writing and performance group, ‘Handful Productions.’ Broadcast journalism was my career for twenty years. Since going freelance in 2000, I have written three stage plays and co-written three others, all performed on the professional stage. A youth drama, Sofa Surfers, has been commissioned by The Playhouse for development in 2008. My research on the life of the Irish nursing pioneer Agnes Jones inspired the stage play (2004) and documentary drama film Agnes which had its premiere in Derry’s Guildhall in 2006 - as well as helping to win the 2006 Tyrone Guthrie Award for Scriptwriting. They have been staged and screened in the UK, Ireland and New Zealand and shown on Ulster Television. They are included in the 2008 European Capital of Culture programme. As producer and director of the film production company Brassneck Productions Ltd., I have a further screenplay, God Dammit, in development. Publications include the novels Reckoning and Finding Lauren, the graphic novel Amelia Earhart and contributions to two anthologies, Eve and Wonderful World of Webbers. As the Ireland officer for the Miscarriage of Justice lobby group, Portia, I edit and contribute to the yearbook, The Lynch Mob Syndrome.
I am a native of South Armagh, but currently live in Derry & Donegal. I also have a teenage daughter".
Top of de mornin to ya!
It was founded in 1979 as a voluntary educational book-publishing trust by local school teacher, Ms Anne Murray. Its original aims were to research, write and publish all aspects of local history in an objective and factual way and to create a platform for reconciliation through education by publishing material that increased cross-community understanding and acceptance.
Since 1995, the scope of publications produced by Guildhall Press has changed from local history texts, to wider interest books concentrating on the history of the past thirty years in the north of Ireland, giving Guildhall Press the potential to operate in a larger market, whilst retaining its role as an active community organisation.
With the advent of the internet, Guildhall Press expanded its remit in to web publishing, initially to promote itself and its books and more recently as a designer of websites for local business and community groups.