Friday, October 16, 2009


What's that quotation - something about a prophet never being welcome in her own country? In one of today's Irish newspapers, in the book review section, I came across this line-
the current vogue in Irish fiction for (either) gormless chick-lit from semi- literate half-wits.
Is this Irish newspaper really slagging off the commercial success of its countrywomen? Irish writers Marian Keyes, Cecilia Ahern, Cathy Kelly, Patricia Scanlan, Sarah Webb and Shiela O'Flanagan have sold hundreds of thousands of novels each. They are published all over the world, and translated into countless languages. They are rich and respected beyond my wildest dreams. They are the elite of a cut throat business.
What is half- witted about that?


  1. Must have been written by a jealous frustrated wannabe? ;0)

  2. Anne,

    who said that? What paper? I have certianly noticed a lack of support recently in the media for Irish lady novelists. Including yourself, myself and Claire Allan!!! And we are far from being halfwit; the lot of us have degrees, day-jobs, devoted husbands, lovely children and an awful lot of responsibilities. I agree with Chic Mama, it must be jealousy. What a mean thing to say about a success story coming out of Ireland. If that writer does not think Irish romantic fiction deserves the success it has enjoyed, perhaps they should just quietly promote the books they do enjoy. That's what we do on our Book Club page, after all, in the Belfast Telegraph. If a book isn't terribly good or amazing, we just don't feature it. Whatever happened to good manners and decency? It's hard enough to get published in the first place without being called names in the press. Also, without some of the major names in publishing generating huge sums of money (not me) the publishers would not be able to print 90% of their current titles. So even though some people may not like chick-lit, the bottom line is, chick-lit is popular and it sells like hot cakes.

    Just another example of Irish women writers and their fans being put in their place, I think. What a shame.

  3. Hi Sharon,
    It's in the Irish Independent, it's a sycophantic piece about male crime writer John Connolly, who has recently diversified into children's fiction

  4. There is nothing worse than meanness when people achieve success through hard endeavour.

  5. Ha! I just found it.

    The funny thing is that the writer is praising another writer who once wrote a "hard-boiled" novel about - yes, you've guessed it - an emotionally crippled PI with a dark side...

    Original? Ahem...

    It would be a miracle if a male writer wrote a novel about a male PI who was happily married, emotionally stable and a good laugh.

    Here's a wee tip for all male reviewers out there: some women actually enjoy books that are about love, friendship, relationships, sex, shopping and shoes. And so do some pretty groovy, sexy guys!!!

    Grow up, Ian.