Nicola White grew up in Ireland and New York and graduated from Trinity College, Dublin. She lived in London and Belfast before moving to Glasgow to work as a contemporary art curator, moving on to produce arts documentaries for BBC radio and television.
In 2008 she won the Scottish Book Trust’s New Writer Award, and began to publish short stories in a range of journals, anthologies and for broadcast on Radio 4. In 2012 she was Leverhulme Writer in Residence at Edinburgh University.
Her novel, In the Rosary Garden, won the Dundee International Book prize and was shortlisted for the 2014 Deanston (now McIlvanny) Prize. It was selected as one of the four best debuts by Val McDermid ‘New Blood’ panel at the Harrogate crime festival and was one of the Glasgow Herald’s 2014 ‘books of the year’.
She publishes non-fiction with The Dublin Review and has contributed essays to numerous visual art publications, such as the National Galleries of Scotland’s 2014 ‘Generation Reader’.
Nicola currently splits her time between Glasgow and the Highlands, which means she lives mostly on the A9.
Nicola is represented by Jenny – firstname.lastname@example.org
Summer in Dublin, 1984. Ali Hogan is leaving school, all the possibilities of adult life glistening before her, when her discovery of a murdered newborn in a convent garden shatters her world and resurrects half-formed memories of a terrible incident from her childhood.
For detective Vincent Swan, a dead newborn is a sad, but not particularly unusual, occurrence. But this baby’s resting place in the grounds of a prosperous school, in an Ireland riven by battles over God and reproduction, makes the case a media sensation even as the church moves to suppress it.
Ali flees the media spotlight, seeking refuge at her uncle’s farm in remote Buleen where she starts to put together the fragments of that older tragedy, another infanticide. Meanwhile in Dublin, Swan’s investigation is stalling, forcing him to consider the scraps of evidence that point to Ali Hogan herself.
Praise for In the Rosary Garden
“In the Rosary Garden” is a moving, intelligent and courageous book – both a family story and a genuine thriller.” – AL Kennedy
“A mesmerising tale of secrets and lies rising from the past to strangle the present.” – Val McDermid
“In The Rosary Garden is as good as it gets: a debut shot through with the real, horrifying cruelty of true crime and a heart-race ending.” – Denise Mina
“A vivid thriller. Engrossing right up to its sombre resolution… an arresting debut” – Irish Independent
“An unusual but absorbingly twisting narrative is hugely enhanced by White’s creation of Detective Swan, a complex man whose own frustrated paternal instincts ensure that a highly politicised case becomes very personal indeed.” – The Irish Times
In The Rosary Garden, Nicola White’s superb, pitch-perfect debut, is a compulsive, page-turning crime novel, a haunting slab of Irish family gothic and a moving study of a young woman coming of age in a society deeply unsympathetic to women. Nicola White writes beautifully, with wit, verve, a gift for scene-setting and a compassionate eye for the foibles of her characters. – Declan Hughes, author of the Ed Loy novels.