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Thurles Gets A Mention In Graham Norton’s “Holding”

We all know we should be reading more, so it is still not too late to include it in our 2018 list of New Year’s resolutions. To this end, for the year 2018, Thurles.Info (Deo volente) will be recommending for each month, January through to December, a ‘Book of the Month’ blog.

Our first recommendation for this year has to be “Holding” by Graham Norton. You may not be aware, but Graham Norton, the Irish born and much-loved presenter of the BBC’s “The Graham Norton Show”, has written his first fiction novel and it will come as no surprise to fans that same is nothing short of brilliant.

Set in the small west Cork town of Duneen, “Holding” introduces you to a cast of characters whose ordinary lives are irrevocably changed when the body of a young man is found buried on a local building site.

The plot of “Holding” may come as a surprise to readers when one considers Graham Norton’s genius reputation for comedy on ‘Fr. Ted’ and as a T.V. presenter, but “Holding” reveals yet another side to our Mr Graham Norton. His debut novel is a sensitive story of love, loss and hope, punctuated throughout with witty and shrewd observations of life, still to be found, so much in abundance, here in rural Ireland.

A central character in “Holding” is the rotund and often underestimated Garda Sgt. P.J. Collins. In Chapter 5, when a little of Sgt. Collins’ back story is revealed, we discover that our own much-loved Irish town of Thurles, Co. Tipperary gets a mention and plays a part in bringing Garda Sgt. Collins to the remote town of Duneen, quote, “After Graduating from Templemore, he had been stationed in Thurles. He liked the job well enough… In Thurles he worked longer hours than anyone else and was always the first to volunteer for the shifts that nobody else wanted”.

“Holding” by Graham Norton is published by Hodder & Stoughton and is available to purchase at Bookworm Liberty Square, Thurles or online from Amazon.

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