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Local writer signs with JK Rowling’s publishers

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By Michelle Crean

A local woman is hoping to have the same success Harry Potter author JK Rowling after being signed by the same publisher.

And not only that, but talented Barraduff woman Olivia Howe - who writes under the pen name Olivia Hope - has signed a three book deal with Bloomsbury who are famous for working with award-winning writers.

Bloomsbury recently announced the acquisition of 'Be Wild, Little One', a lyrical anthem of courage and imagination from the debut author, which will be published in May 2022.

Olivia’s second book, 'Little Lion Girl' - illustrated by bestselling, award-winning Fiona Woodcock, will be published in 2023, with a third book scheduled for 2024.

Olivia has a special love for children's fiction, and before becoming an author, she was a former record-breaking athlete, and competed internationally.

"I have been writing for about 10 years," Olivia, a mother of two boys, told the Killarney Advertiser this week.

"I have also worked with children using imaginative play."

When her youngest child was born Olivia said she couldn't find a book about a strong robin.

"I decided to write my own. It was something that just happened and that was the starting story."

Then during the Cork World Book Festival she pitched her work to a scout who loved her ideas.

The story is inspired by nature with the uplifting picture book celebrating the wildness in everyone as well as the beauty of the world around us.

"We [JK Rowling] have the same publisher and I still don't quite believe it! I can't wait until it's published next May."

Olivia currently works as a Creative Learning Assistant in Siamsa Tíre, Tralee, creating the story behind the acclaimed art exhibition for children, 'A Way Home'.

She added that she was inspired by the beautiful surroundings Killarney has to offer for the nature side of the book.

"One of the scenes near the back pages looks like Killarney National Park."

Pari Thomson, Commissioning Editor, Bloomsbury Children’s Books, said "Olivia Hope is a huge talent and we’re thrilled to be working with her".

"Brought to life by Daniel Egnéus’s luminous illustrations, 'Be Wild, Little One' is an unforgettable journey through the wonders of the natural world. I hope that its uplifting magic and beauty will enthral readers far and wide."

Shirley Hughes, famed author and illustrator of more than 200 books spanning 60 years called 'Be Wild, Little One' an "outstanding book to enchant readers of all ages" - high praise indeed for the Irish debut.

'Be Wild, Little One' is available to pre-order from bookshops.

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Soroptimists fundraising efforts not “hampered” by COVID

By Michelle Crean COVID didn’t “hamper” their efforts this year as members of the Killarney Soroptimist Club came together and gave generously to charity. Members of the group couldn’t hold normal meetings this year due to the ongoing restrictions but pulled together to continue supporting a women’s aid countywide service. Along with family and friends […]

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By Michelle Crean

COVID didn’t “hamper” their efforts this year as members of the Killarney Soroptimist Club came together and gave generously to charity.

Members of the group couldn’t hold normal meetings this year due to the ongoing restrictions but pulled together to continue supporting a women’s aid countywide service.

Along with family and friends they created Christmas hampers for the third year running and donated them to the ADAPT Centre in Tralee on Tuesday.

There, they presented them to Catherine Casey, who is the Manager of ADAPT Women’s Refuge Centre.

“It is wonderful to be in a position to donate these Christmas hampers to ADAPT once again this year,” Killarney Soroptimist Club President, Teresa Irwin, said.

“Due to COVID and not being able to hold normal club meetings we were unsure what we could manage. We are thrilled with the response since we decided to go ahead and amazed at the generosity and the number of hampers. We wish to thank all those that donated. Hopefully the residents of ADAPT will enjoy them.”

Catherine said that they were once again very grateful to all the members of the Killarney Soroptimist Club.

“We recognise that there is a lot of organising and work done by the Club President Teresa Irwin and all the members in collecting and putting the hampers together. It is heartwarming to see the support and generosity of the club. ADAPT Kerry and the Killarney Soroptimists have built a very good relationship over the last number of years and they have lead many campaigns to highlight our service in the Killarney area, including taking part in the ‘Safe Homes, Safe Communities’ initiatives. There is no doubt that their work raises awareness of our service and has contributed to many more women making contact with us for support by phone, through our outreach service and availing of refuge.”

If you would like to talk to ADAPT Kerry please ring 066 7129100 anytime.

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Time to get your Santa letters posted!

We hope you have your Christmas letter written – and checked it twice – because Santa is waiting for it to be posted! And thanks to the Christmas in Killarney committee it’s now so much easier to get it to him with the special Santa post box on College St. just outside Lana. His elves […]

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We hope you have your Christmas letter written – and checked it twice – because Santa is waiting for it to be posted!

And thanks to the Christmas in Killarney committee it’s now so much easier to get it to him with the special Santa post box on College St. just outside Lana.

His elves will collect the post every night at midnight and bring them straight to the North Pole.

After taking part in the magical parade in town on Saturday evening, Santa spoke to the Killarney Advertiser and said he is so excited to deliver the toys later this month.

“Season’s Greetings to everyone,” Santa said.

“I would like to remind all the boys and girls in Killarney and Kerry to write and post their letters to me as soon as possible. They can use the green post box on College St and my elves will collect the letters every night when everyone is asleep! I can’t wait to get in my sleigh and deliver all the fantastic presents on Christmas Eve. Remember, be good, the elves are watching!”

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