Portbradden is backdrop to new novel

The picturesque village of Portbradden is the backdrop to a new novel which has been published by a County Down woman.

Thursday, 25th November 2021, 11:23 am
Author Elaine Somers

Retired art gallery owner Elaine Somers from Crawfordsburn decided to pen the novel ‘Marjorie & Claudette’ as she was recovering from Covid in March 2020.

To relieve the monotony Elaine started to write a book which had been in the back of her mind for some years.

Elaine said: “I saw a photo of Portbradden and began to write about my old friend Marjorie Kirkpatrick who had lived there until her death in the late 90’s.

“Suddenly I had an awful lot of followers wanting to know more about Marjorie. I really didn’t know any more other than what I had written, so I began to write it as a book, totally fictional and from my own imagination.

“The story took me from India to Oxford and then to Jersey, before Marjorie’s return to war-torn England. It then went to Portbradden and finally, to France. Quite a journey!”

Elaine’s husband Bryan said: “The background to Marjorie and Claudette is that my wife and I met a marvellous old lady called Marjorie Kirkpatrick through my Aunt Margaret who had retired to Portrush and was attending a painting class there.

“She and Marjorie were in their 80’s. My wife became very fond of Marjorie and often visited her in her little house in Portbradden. They chatted for hours and Elaine was intrigued by her life experiences.

“This was the seed from which the book grew.”

The book, published by Conrad Press, is priced £10 and is available from Waterstones and from Elaine via email [email protected]