Ally was brought up in a beautiful but basic rambling house in Monaghan, with three sisters and 56 varieties of animals including ponies, a pig, and a goat. Between school and college she spent a year in Argentina, also travelling around South America.
She got into PR straight from College.
“Before my finals I met a PR woman from New York, and by magic, she got me an internship with an agency on fifth avenue.”
After learning the ropes, Ally moved to the London office where she lived the she high life; dealing with the likes of Joan Collins and Griff Rhys Jones. But the late nights and constant partying took their toll.
“In 2003 I felt sad and burnt out. I went to live in Paris, and, sitting in a bright yellow kitchen, I started writing this book.”
She continued to write back in Monaghan, but after a while, moving to Dublin she got back into PR.
“Then I met and married Turtle, and moved to his homestead in County Carlow.”
Ten years later she picked up the story, writing as therapy whilst looking after a much loved aunt. When an agent showed interest in the first three chapters, she felt impelled to finish the book.
Who is Ally Bunbury?
Date of birth: 1976 in Dublin.
Education: Newtown School, Waterford. NUI Maynooth; History.
Home: Lisnavagh Estate, County Carlow.
Family: Husband Turtle; daughters Jemima and Bay.
The Day Job: Fulltime mum and writer. “I always have a PR client on the go.”
In Another Life? “I would have been a nurse. I like making people feel better if they feel gloomy.”
Favourite Writers: Jilly Cooper; Raffaella Barker; Turtle Bunbury.
Second Novel: “I am working on it.”
Top Tip: “Stop watching television until you finish the book.”
Web: www.Allybunbury.com Twitter: @ally_bunbury
The Debut: The Inheritance. Poolbeg: €16.99. Kindle: €1.15.
Anna’s life in London is already glitzy when she meets, and falls for George Wyndham. When he, as London’s most eligible bachelor falls for her, life seems perfect. But she was reckoning without the conniving intervention of Sofia Tamper, and her obnoxious mother, Blaise. Will she lose George so that he can keep his inheritance?
The Verdict: Delicious escapism. Like Jilly Cooper, Irish style.
Published in The Irish Examiner on 11th March, 2017
© Sue Leonard. 2017
Picture by Rachael Comiskey Photography