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Cathy Kelly
Born (1966-09-12) 12 September 1966 (age 49)[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)
  • It Started With Paris (2014)
  • Between Sisters (2015)


  • 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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3660 news items

Daily Mail

Daily Mail
Thu, 29 Oct 2015 14:15:09 -0700

Cathy Kelly is a popular fiction author … are you reading now? The new Lee Child - I adore Jack Reacher, who is big, strong, kind, can shower in 11 minutes, likes coffee and can knock bad guys to the ground with a few brilliantly calculated moves ...

Irish Times

Irish Times
Thu, 15 Oct 2015 22:02:16 -0700

Novelist Cathy Kelly is a global best-seller whose many novels include Lessons in Heartbreak, Someone Like You and Always and Forever. She grew up in Dublin and studied journalism in the 1980s. She worked for the Sunday World, first as a reporter and ...


Tue, 20 Oct 2015 03:52:30 -0700

Cathy Kelly has just released her seventeenth novel 'Between Sisters' which tells the story of two sister who have an unbreakable bond formed when their mother leaves them as children. But, when Cathy Kelly popped into us for a chat this morning, we ...

Belfast Telegraph

Belfast Telegraph
Sun, 18 Oct 2015 23:56:26 -0700

Top Belfast-born author Cathy Kelly has waded into the assisted suicide debate after saying she would end her life in a Swiss euthanasia clinic if she suffered from a terminal disease - even though her children are against the idea. The mother-of-two ...

Irish Independent

Irish Independent
Tue, 14 Jul 2015 18:30:38 -0700

Cathy Kelly: Harper's lovely writing shines through - but that's no excuse for publishing this novel now. Cathy Kelly. Published 15/07/2015 | 02:30. 0 Comments; Share. Facebook · Twitter · Google · Email. Best-selling writer Cathy Kelly with the new ...

Belfast Telegraph

Belfast Telegraph
Sat, 21 Nov 2015 08:02:29 -0800

Presseye Northern Ireland - Belfast Telegraph Run Forest Run Gosford Forest Park - 21st November 2015 Photograph by Declan Roughan - Press Eye (L-R) Ruth Sloan, (left) Kilkeel and Dianne Forsythe, Ballymartin The Belfast Telegraph Run Forest Run ...

the Irish News

the Irish News
Sun, 11 Oct 2015 17:00:00 -0700

THE highs and lows of the dysfunctional family and the friendships we choose are explored in Cathy Kelly's latest novel, Between Sisters. Born in Belfast, though brought up in Dublin, Kelly worked as a news reporter for 13 years with the Sunday World ...

Irish Independent

Irish Independent
Mon, 23 Nov 2015 04:36:06 -0800

If you would like to see Lorna speaking in person a fundraising event is taking place tonight at the National Concert Hall, Dublin at 7.30pm where she will be interviewed by fellow author Cathy Kelly. All proceeds go towards the Lorna Byrne Children's ...

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