Young, gifted and looking for magic

Young, gifted and looking for magic
Caroline O’Donoghue: ‘If I no longer know the names of streets and restaurants in Cork city, am I still from Cork?’

Cork-born Caroline O’Donoghue’s debut novel, charting the quarter-life crisis of an ambitious twentysomething, is partially drawn from her own experiences as a hungry young creative, writes Anna Carey

‘It’s never a convenient time to write a book,” says Caroline O’Donoghue, whose first novel Promising Young Women (Virago, £12,99) has just been published to widespread acclaim. “It’s always going to be huge amount of work.” But when O’Donoghue, who grew up in Cork before moving to London after graduating from UCC in 2011, was asked if she was interested in writing a book, she knew that she had to take the plunge. “I felt, ‘Well, I’m not planning on having babies any time soon, I’m not planning a wedding, this is probably going to be the last time in my life I can selfishly spend a lot of time on a huge project that’s just about my own self-satisfaction.’ ” She just had to figure out what to write about.

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