Holding Her Breath
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Holding Her Breath

3.75 (820 ratings by Goodreads)
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Description

SHORTLISTED FOR THE IRISH BOOK AWARDS 2021

SHORTLISTED FOR THE KATE O'BRIEN AWARD 2022

'A stunning debut from this new Irish talent' STELLAR

A young woman comes of age in the shadow of her family's tragic past

When Beth Crowe starts university, she is shadowed by the ghost of her potential as a competitive swimmer. Free to create a fresh identity for herself, she finds herself among people who adore the poetry of her grandfather, Benjamin Crowe, who died tragically before she was born. She embarks on a secret relationship - and on a quest to discover the truth about Benjamin and his widow, her beloved grandmother Lydia. The quest brings her into an archive that no scholar has ever seen, and to a person who knows things about her family that nobody else knows.

Holding Her Breath is a razor-sharp, moving and seriously entertaining novel about complicated love stories, ambition and grief - and a young woman coming fully into her powers.
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'A beautiful coming-of-age story told with impressive skill and lightness of touch . . . I absolutely loved it' LOUISE O'NEILL

'Whip smart observations and addictive prose' SUNDAY TELEGRAPH

'Precise, sure, engaging, and a joy to read' RODDY DOYLE

'A moving debut with a satisfying conclusion' IRISH INDEPENDENT

'Brilliant, vivid - I enjoyed this book ENORMOUSLY' MARIAN KEYES

'Enthralling' IMAGE

'A nimble account of student life with a darkly enjoyable undercurrent of secrecy and emotional turmoil' SARA BAUME

'A truly compelling read, and one I wholeheartedly recommend' BUZZ

'Through the dark sky of our times, Eimear Ryan arrives like a comet, a bright talent scorching through every page' DOIREANN NI GHRIOFA, author of A Ghost in the Throat

'Brilliantly realised, gripping, and moving . . . This is absolutely the real thing' KEVIN POWER

'Written with a wonderful clarity and insight, Holding Her Breath lingers in the imagination. Beth's unravelling and re-ravelling is drawn with great skill and empathy. A brilliant debut' DONAL RYAN
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Product details

  • Paperback | 256 pages
  • 135 x 216 x 19mm | 255g
  • Sandycove
  • London, United Kingdom
  • English
  • 1844885461
  • 9781844885466
  • 30,474

Review Text

Richly accomplished . . . a true pleasure to read
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Review quote

Funny, dark and unexpected -- Kevin Power * The Last Word with Matt Cooper * A stunning debut from this new Irish talent, as well as being an exciting page turner it's also a perfect depiction of how it feels to be lost as you embark on a new chapter of your life * Stellar * From the first sentence to the last, this is a great piece of writing - precise, sure, engaging, and a joy to read -- Roddy Doyle Richly accomplished . . . a true pleasure to read -- Dermot Bolger * Business Post * A moving debut with a satisfying conclusion * Irish Independent * Through the dark sky of our times, Eimear Ryan arrives like a comet, a bright talent scorching through every page. To read this book is to feel it blaze to life. I can't stop thinking about it -- Doireann Ni Ghriofa, author of A Ghost in the Throat A beautiful coming-of-age story told with impressive skill and lightness of touch. It marks the arrival of an exciting new voice on the Irish literary scene, one whom I can't wait to hear more from. I absolutely loved it -- Louise O'Neill Whip-smart observations and addictive prose * Sunday Telegraph * Effortlessly weaving together a gripping, multi-layered plot, while maintaining a profoundly tender touch, Ryan has marked herself as a captivatingly original voice in Irish literature * Hot Press * A delicious read . . . A nimble account of student life with a darkly enjoyable undercurrent of secrecy and emotional turmoil -- Sara Baume A joy to read - disarming, entertaining and life-affirming. A blisteringly good portrayal of complex lives and loves. It's an enthralling debut from a hugely talented writer -- Danielle McLaughlin Brilliant, vivid - I enjoyed this book ENORMOUSLY -- Marian Keyes Eimear Ryan is a superbly talented writer and Holding Her Breath is a brilliantly realised, gripping, and moving first novel, full of startling perceptions and richly believable characters. This is absolutely the real thing -- Kevin Power A confident, textured, fluent novel about first love - and the campus novel sections are a pure joy -- Niamh Campbell Written with a wonderful clarity and insight, Holding Her Breath lingers in the imagination. Beth's unravelling and re-ravelling is drawn with great skill and empathy. A brilliant debut -- Donal Ryan Enthralling * Image * So finely polished it gleams, and yet it's also almost effortless reading . . . new, bright, exciting, glittering. I absolutely loved it -- Claire Hennessy Stylishly written, with strong female voices * Irish Times * Very assured . . . a refreshing, accomplished debut * Sunday Independent * It's a truly compelling read, and one I wholeheartedly recommend * Buzz * I very much enjoyed reading this one and if you love intimate coming of age tales as much as I do, you have to pick this up -- Miriam Stimpfl An engaging narrative . . . written with perfect poise * Saga *
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About Eimear Ryan

Eimear Ryan's writing has appeared in Granta, Winter Papers, The Dublin Review and The Stinging Fly. She is the 2021 Writer in Residence at University College Cork. She is a co-founder of the literary journal Banshee and its publishing imprint, Banshee Press. She was shortlisted for the Newcomer of the Year Award at the Irish Book Awards for her first novel, Holding Her Breath. A native of Co. Tipperary, Eimear now lives in Cork city.
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Rating details

820 ratings
3.75 out of 5 stars
5 18% (148)
4 46% (381)
3 29% (239)
2 5% (42)
1 1% (10)
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