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BOOKS

Ireland's Misfortune

The Turbulent Life of Kitty O'Shea

Elisabeth Kehoe

RRP: £12.99

1 March 2009

Published by Atlantic Books

ISBN: 9781843544876

At the end of the nineteenth century, Charles Stewart Parnell, MP, was the only man who both the English government and Irish radicals believed could secure Home Rule for Ireland. But when Parnell met and fell in love with Katie O’Shea, a married woman, Parnell’s life – and Ireland’s history – would change for ever. When Parnell was named as co-respondent in Katie’s divorce and revealed as the father of three of Katie’s children their affair triggered the most notorious scandal of the Victorian era.

Elisabeth Kehoe’s vivid biography introduces us to a woman entirely unrecognisable as the home-wrecker and historical catastrophe of subsequent myth. From this book emerges, for the first time, the real Katie O’Shea: a gifted woman who influenced political policy with an acuity and sensitivity sorely lacking in her lover.