About the Book:
In 1950’s southern Ireland, single mother Theresa gives birth to a child she names Roisin. Arrangements are in hand for the adoption when Theresa changes her mind. The child, gifted and intuitive, is viewed by the local community as ‘odd’. Reeling from the news of Roisin’s heart-breaking expulsion from convent school, Theresa makes a momentous decision. To protect her daughter, she must send her away.
Canada’s wild beauty serves as a backdrop to a year of challenges for Roisin. She encounters trauma and devastating loss, but also gains a new family and finds love with the enigmatic Cal. Death, grief and culpability are potent forces she must somehow come to terms with. Can a tiny model boat unshackle her from her past and help her journey into a hopeful future?
About the Author:
Tina Pritchard spent most of her life engaged in bringing up a family, taking a social science degree, working as a lecturer, a trainer and more recently as an independent celebrant conducting funerals, weddings and naming ceremonies. Her first book, a psychological thriller, In A Deep Dark Wood, was published in 2021. The Sea Glass Beach is a departure in genre and started life as a short story morphing over the years into a novel. It is a work of fiction inspired in part by her own mother’s experience of giving birth to a child at Sean Ross Abbey Mother and Baby Home in the 1950’s. That child, born all those years ago in Co Tipperary, Ireland, is the author of this book.
Tina loves to write and has won competitions for both her short stories and her poetry. She lives in a beautiful part of the world and gains much of her inspiration from walking her badly behaved terrier, Horace, in the Derbyshire countryside.
Where to Buy:
This extract follows Theresa’s invitation to attend a meeting with the school Principal, Sister Agnes, to discuss Roisin’s educational future.
Approx 452 words
Theresa felt a flare of anger and her cheeks flushed red. Had this woman any concept of what she was saying? Did she know her daughter at all? It seemed, with little forethought, she was ready to deprive her child of the opportunities an education would afford her. It was a ridiculous proposition. Everyone knew how much Roisin hated being confined. Putting her to work in the laundry would be akin to keeping a wild bird in a cage. Over my dead body Theresa thought, outraged by the idea. They want to sap the life and spirit out of her and I am not having it. Whatever the consequences.
She stood, knees knocking and pushed back the chair. It made a sharp scraping sound against the wooden boards. Theresa didn’t care. Her legs felt insubstantial, as though turned to jelly, but inside her anger had become white-hot. Head held high, she paused to take a deep breath. ‘I can’t and won’t agree to your offer,’ Theresa said, holding back tears of rage. ‘but I do ask one thing of you. I don’t want it mentioned by anyone at the school. I should be the one to tell her when I feel the time is right.’
Her composure regained, she strode from the room, down the corridor and out through the front door, slamming it with such force behind her, the windows rattled.
If Theresa had chanced to look back, she would have gained some satisfaction from seeing Sister Agnes’ demeanour. The nun, having observed Theresa’s indignant retreat, had pushed back her own chair and was attempting to stand. Her knuckles, gnarled with age, were gripping the edge of her desk. She appeared diminished and unsecured, as though steadying herself in a gale. On her wizened face was a look of complete bewilderment.
Theresa had always been so respectful and compliant. What on earth was she thinking, stomping out in such high dudgeon? As far as Sister Agnes was concerned, the recommendations were in everyone’s interest, including Roisin’s. Theresa should be grateful. It was a sorry state of affairs when someone in her position could afford to turn her nose up at such a well-thought out offer. The notion her proposal, rejected in such a cavalier manner, might have far-reaching consequences escaped Sister Agnes completely. She wasn’t to know she would be the catalyst for momentous change. Had she had one iota of awareness of her role in altering the course of direction of not one, but two lives, she likely would have remained untroubled. It would be out of her hands and in the remit of the Lord. What will be will be, as she was so fond of saying, ad nauseam.