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Cathy Kelly
Born (1966-09-12) 12 September 1966 (age 48)[1]
Belfast, Northern Ireland
Pen name Cathy Kelly
Language English
Nationality Irish
Period 1997–present
Genre Women's fiction
Subject Women and relationships
Notable awards RoNA Award

Cathy Kelly (born 12 September 1966) is an Irish former journalist and writer of women's fiction since 1997. She has gained international recognition with her popular fiction novels, which are published globally in many languages.[2] In 2001, her novel Someone Like You won the Romantic Novel of the Year Award by the Romantic Novelists' Association.[3] Kelly is one of the most successful female authors to come out of Ireland since Maeve Binchy, having once outsold both Dan Brown and J. K. Rowling in the UK.[2]


Early life and career[edit]

Born in Belfast but raised in Dublin,[4] she studied at a convent school. Cathy initially worked for 13 years as a newspaper journalist with the Sunday World, where she worked in news, features, along with spending time as an agony aunt and film critic.[4]

However, her overwhelming love was always fiction and she published her first international bestseller, Woman To Woman, in 1997.[4] She did not become a full-time writer until she had written another two books (She’s The One and Never Too Late) and finally decided to leave the world of journalism in 2001.[2]

Someone Like You, What She Wants, Just Between Us and Best of Friends followed in successive years.[2] Always and Forever was her first hardback number one and then topped the overall UK bestseller list during October 2005, displacing Dan Brown and J. K. Rowling who had been on top most weeks.[2]

Her books Lessons in Heartbreak and Homecoming were shortlisted for the Eason Irish Popular Fiction Book of the Year at the Irish Book Awards.[5] Once in a Lifetime topped the UK bestsellers for Kelly again,[6] for multiple weeks.[7] In March 2011, Homecoming achieved the same feat. Her recent short story collection, Christmas Magic, was a Christmas number one in Ireland.[2] She is hugely popular around the world: a number one bestseller in Australia and New Zealand, where she tours annually, and published in many different languages.[8]

Cathy's trademark is warm story-telling; she writes books which deal with themes ranging from relationships and marriage to depression and loss, but always with an uplifting message and strong female characters at the heart.[2]


Kelly is involved with many charities and has been an Ambassador for UNICEF Ireland since 2005.[4][9] She works as a Global Parent for UNICEF, which means raising funds and awareness for children orphaned by or living with HIV/AIDs.[2] Her role has seen her visit Rwanda and Mozambique.[2]

Personal life[edit]

Cathy lives in Enniskerry, County Wicklow with her family and three dogs.[2]


Single novels[edit]

  • Woman to Woman (1997)
  • She's the One (1998)
  • Never Too Late (1999)
  • Someone Like You (2000)
  • What She Wants (2001)
  • Just Between Us (2002)
  • Best of Friends (2003)
  • Always and Forever (2005)
  • Past Secrets (2006)
  • Lessons in Heartbreak (2008)
  • Once in a Lifetime (2009)
  • The Perfect Holiday (2010)
  • Homecoming (2010)
  • The House on Willow Street (2012)
  • The Honey Queen (2013)


  • Letter from Chicago (2002)


  • Christmas Magic (2011)

References and sources[edit]

  1. ^ "Cathy Kelly goes from agony aunt to bestselling novelist". Brisbane Courier-Mail. 27 August 2010. Retrieved 27 October 2011. 
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h i j "Cathy Kelly The Official Site". 6 March 2012. 
  3. ^ Awards by the Romantic Novelists' Association, 13 October 2012 
  4. ^ a b c d Pauline Askin (1 April 2009). "Book Talk: Modern, ancient Ireland inspire novelist Cathy Kelly". Reuters. Retrieved 6 February 2010. 
  5. ^ Eoin Burke-Kennedy (1 April 2009). "Eclectic shortlist for Irish Book Awards". The Irish Times. Retrieved 6 February 2010. 
  6. ^ Andrea Byrne (20 September 2009). "Literary elite bring their words to life". Irish Independent. Retrieved 6 February 2010. 
  7. ^ Philip Stone (15 September 2009). "Cathy Kelly stays on top for HarperCollins". The Bookseller. Retrieved 12 February 2010. 
  8. ^ "Curtis Brown". 6 March 2012. 
  9. ^ "what you can do to help unicef". Irish Independent. 12 December 2009. Retrieved 6 February 2010. 

External links[edit]

Original courtesy of Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cathy_Kelly — Please support Wikipedia.
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Solo singer, tin whistle player & flautist from Armagh N Ireland. Available for wedding services (all denominations) & funeral services. Contact me via email...

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Buy the House on Willow Street: http://amzn.to/HZiuop Reviews: 'Utterly relaxing ... left me with a warm feeling. The House on Willow Street delivered exactl...

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181 news items

Irish Independent

Irish Independent
Fri, 03 Oct 2014 15:50:13 -0700

Facebook · Twitter · Google · Email. Author, Cathy Kelly has the wisdom of age. Often hailed as the best female writer to come out of Ireland since Maeve Binchy, former journalist Cathy Kelly recalls having her first book delivered to the Sunday World ...

The Sun (subscription)

The Sun (subscription)
Thu, 16 Oct 2014 04:15:00 -0700

The Fabulous Book Club reviews...It Started In Paris by Cathy Kelly. Close the curtains, shut out the auttumn weather and get stuck into this romantic new book. Plus, you could win a copy! it started with paris. BY CLAIRE FROST. Published: 11 hrs ago ...

Get Surrey

Get Surrey
Tue, 07 Oct 2014 03:08:33 -0700

According to Cathy Kelly, no one will ever make a film out of one of her books because a pitch for a movie must be no more than 22 words. Take her latest book – It all started with Paris – for example. A young man proposes to his girlfriend at the top ...
Irish Independent
Fri, 03 Oct 2014 14:34:46 -0700

00:00 / 04:34. Embed video. Dimensions: 320x240, 480x320, 1280x720. This advertisement ends in: 04:34. Blue Billywig Video Player. Acclaimed author Cathy Kelly talks to Louise Kelly about her love of writing and her former job as a journalist.

the Irish News

the Irish News
Mon, 13 Oct 2014 01:24:47 -0700

This quote from Antoine de Saint-Exupery is Irish author Cathy Kelly's favourite of the 22 she includes at the start of each chapter of her latest novel, It Started with Paris. The book opens with the engagement of Michael and Katy on the Eiffel Tower ...

Irish Independent

Irish Independent
Sat, 04 Oct 2014 18:32:50 -0700

0 Comments; Share. Facebook · Twitter · Google · Email. Author Cathy Kelly. Romance queen Cathy Kelly's 15th novel hits shelves here this week, and whether single or loved-up, fans of the author are destined to make a date with It Started With Paris.
Waterloo Record
Sat, 18 Oct 2014 07:37:30 -0700

Like Binchy, Kelly is Irish, but the similarities go much further. The delight of both writers' stories is the interconnection of relationships between its characters. In this story, childhood sweethearts Michael and Katy get engaged at the top of the ...

Mid Columbia Tri City Herald

Mid Columbia Tri City Herald
Wed, 08 Oct 2014 12:01:47 -0700

Hannigan is played by Tri-City singer/actor Cathy Kelly. An assistant to billionaire Oliver “Daddy” Warbucks comes to the orphanage, looking for an orphan to spend Christmas at the Warbucks mansion. Seeing Annie, the assistant asks for her, and ...

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