IrishCentral’s Book Club pick for January celebrates the amazing talent of Emma Hannigan

Welcome to January’s pick for the IrishCentral Monthly Book Club! Each month we will pick a new Irish book or a great book from an Irish author and celebrate the amazing ability of the Irish to tell a good story.

Throughout January, we’ll be reading “The Secrets We Share” by Emma Hannigan. The author of 13 books tragically lost her battle with cancer in 2018.

With a new book announcement on the first day of each month, stay with us throughout the month as we talk to the authors and give you a chance to discuss some great Irish works. The best way to stay in touch with us and other book club members is to join our dedicated Facebook group here, where you can leave your comments and questions or give us some more great Irish recommendations.

If you have any further comments, questions for the author or recommendations for a future IrishCentral Book of the Month, you can email us at  

You can purchase “The Secrets We Share” here. 

Read more: Irish author Emma Hannigan tells children to “keep dancing” in heartbreaking self-written eulogy

IrishCentral’s January Book of the Month:

Author: Emma Hannigan

Publisher: Hachette Books Ireland

Genre: Fiction/Romance

Synopsis: Clara Conway is a woman with secrets. But consequently, Clara’s family is falling apart. Her son Max emigrated to the US years ago and she has yet to meet her teenage granddaughter, Nathalie...because Max and his mother no longer speak.

Meanwhile, Clara’s daughter Ava is fighting for a piece of happiness. When Clara unexpectedly reaches out to Nathalie and her niece comes to visit, Ava’s thoughts turn to Max, the brother she loved and lost. The brother whose abrupt disappearance left the Conway family heartbroken.

When Nathalie finds a pile of torn, faded letters, she unlocks the door to Clara’s past.  Can Nathalie’s time with her grandmother start to right some very old wrongs? And can Clara find a way to reach out to Max and thereby begin to heal the whole family once more?

After all, some secrets are meant to be shared…

About the author: Emma Hannigan was the beloved and bestselling author of many novels and a memoir. “Letters to my Daughters,” her twelfth novel, spent five weeks at Number One in the Original Fiction bestseller chart in Ireland on publication in 2018.

“The Perfect Gift” and “The Wedding Promise” were also Number One bestsellers in Ireland. “The Secrets We Share” won the Romantic Novelists’ Association’s Epic Romantic Novel award.

Emma won Woman of the Year in the literature category of the Irish Tatler Women of the Year awards and was shortlisted twice for an Irish Book award.

Emma published her bestselling memoir “Talk to the Headscarf” in 2011, which was updated and extended in 2017 as “All to Live For: Fighting Cancer. Finding Hope” and was a top ten bestseller in Ireland.

In 2005, Emma discovered that she had the BRCA1 gene mutation which carries an 85 percent risk of developing breast cancer and a 50 percent risk of developing ovarian cancer.

In 2007 she was diagnosed with breast cancer for the first time and her eleven-year battle with cancer began. As an ambassador for Breast Cancer Ireland Emma worked hard to dispel the fears around cancer and spread hope about new treatments.

In February 2018 Emma shared with her readers that her dedicated team of doctors had exhausted all avenues in terms of her treatment. In Emma’s final days, she launched a social media campaign #HelpEmmaHelpOthers to raise €100,000 for Breast Cancer Ireland. Two weeks later, shortly before her death, Emma’s target had been reached.

In the final months of her life, despite the limitations of her illness, Emma completed her thirteenth novel, “The Gift of Friends,” sending her acknowledgments to her editor just days before she passed away.

You can purchase “The Secrets We Share” here. 

Be sure to join the IrishCentral Book Club group here or to send us an email with questions at