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Nessa O’Mahony’s ambitious verse novel was the basis of her PhD in Creative and Critical Writing. In it, she explores what home means, in the contemporary world and in the world of 19th century emigrants from Ireland to Australia. Using journal entries, letters and poems, O’Mahony tells the story of a fictional protagonist researching family history, and of a real woman, Marget Butler, who emigrated to Australia in the 1850s and whose family left an archive of her letters in the National Library of Ireland. Writing about it, reviewer Sandeep Parmar said “O’Mahony’s book is compulsively readable, especially for those who are attracted to the possibilities of archival research.”


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