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Deirdre Shanahan


Irish landscape travellers mountain road wide-sky

                  Bluemoose Books,

                  25 Sackville St, Hebden Bridge.

                  W.Yorks. HX7 7DJ  


isbn  9781910422472 - hdback / 9781910422489 - ppbk

Story Collection


Splice Books

isbn 9781916173033


Caravan of the Lost and Left Behind

Tim Pears - award-winning novelist

"Caravan of the Lost and Left Behind,’ is a story of  heroes whose fate is remorseless as those in folk ballads or gypsy songs. Eva, Torin and Caitlin (like Grandad and Delia before them) are caught in webs they can hardly escape except in their dreams and fantasies, and the romance of the open road. You draw the reader in to their destinies. I felt increasingly moved by Torin and Caitlin, and as I understood their relationship I wondered how the writer could help them - and the reader. The ending is brilliant, hopeful in an entirely honest, unsentimental way. The writer took this reader on a fraught, difficult journey, surfing on the finely wrought details of the writing, and delivered us into a believable future.

​Minor characters - Pauley, Shane, Sheridan - are brilliantly drawn. Set-piece scenes - the concert when Torin attacks Shane, the party Pauley takes Torin to - are so well done, reading was like watching a film."

Charles Palliser - award-winning novelist. Readings organiser. Stoke Newington Bookshop

“I was very impressed indeed by the book. It's a very fine piece of work, very powerful and honest and beautifully written.”

The Irish Times

Well written debut…one of the strengths of Deirdre Shanahan’s debut novel Caravan of the Lost and Left Behind is the writer’s way with place, a key part of her story …These well-written sections are to be commended…

Cauvery Madhavan  author The Tainted. Hope Road Publishing

You are going to enjoy 'Caravan of the Lost and Left Behind.' Superb writing and I still think of all the characters weeks later.

Carrying Fire and Water

Angela Readman  Costa winning and short story writer. Author of Don’t Try This At Home

Timeless, vivid and sensory, these stories feel like we are actually there. Shanahan has a gift for detail that make her characters breathe.  A beautiful debut.  


Ruby Cowling  The White Review winner and author of This Paradise Boiler House Books

Somehow  both punchy and delicate, Shanahan’s stunningly intricate writing pulls us fast and deep into stories driven by the powerful undertow of human longing.

Alan McMonagle   short story writer and novelist published by Picador

Tender, elemental, achingly honest and delicately rendered; this is a collection of beautifully observed moments, connections and possibilities that bring into sharp relief things we've had and lost; things we think we have; things we will never have; things we give up; and most importantly of all, perhaps, things that may just have it within them to renew, replenish ourselves. Wonderful.

Billy O’Callaghan, author of My Coney Island Baby and The Boatman and Other Stories

Carrying Fire And Water is beautifully forged: the prose is precise and evocative, the stories full of elegance and insight. Deirdre Shanahan is a fine writer with a deep dedication to the craft, deserving of a wide and enthusiastic readership.

Wendy Erskine  author of Sweet Home



The Lonely Crowd. ed   John Lavin.  Anniversary issue. Issue Twelve . Dec 2020  contributed story.

London Short Story Prize Anthology 2019. Spread the Word. University of Kingston Press. contributed story

    ed Eley Williams, Rowan Hisayo Buchanan and Charlotte Seymour. pub June 2020

Wasafiri International Magazine. Excerpt from novel 'Caravan of the Lost and Left Behind' and commentary

Podcast from Brixton Bookjam Oct 2019. Reading in set 3

Blog Post. Birkbeck. University of London

'Plunder' Won Wasafiri International Fiction Award 2018 judged by Elleke Boehmer and Kerry Young- posted online magazine.

'The Wind Calling' published in The Best of British Short Stories 2017. ed Nicholas Royle from Salt

'Passengers' published in Best of the Short Story Vol 2. ed Kerry Barner

'9  Days- Modes of Distraction' longlist Goldsmiths University New Writing Award. judged by Blake Morrison.

'Weights' story read at The Word Factory, Waterstones Piccadilly. Curated by Cathy Galvin and Paul McVeigh

'Grievous Bodily Harm' story read at Liars League, London

'Birds of Erin' novel excerpt - showcased on The Literary Consultancy site -

'Digging' 2nd in inaugural Spread the Word Writing Award judged by Bidisha and Courttia Newland. Published in anthology -'Edgeways' from Flight Press.

'The Night Breathing' - on WritersHub Birkbeck, University of London

Other Writing


Deirdre Shanahan writer novelist irsh fiction short story writer London West of Ireland

I write fiction -  having published several stories in the USA , UK and Ireland. I have been visiting speaker several times at The London Irish Writers Summer School. London Metropolitan University and  have taught at Brunel University, St Mary’s University and held writing workshops in schools.

My work has been read at Liars League and I have read at The Word Factory, London.

Stories in anthologies

‘The Best of British Short Stories 2017’ edited by Nicholas Royle. Salt  ‘Matador’ edited by Billy O’Callaghan.  ‘Dog Days’ from Fish Publishing edited by Joseph O’Connor. ‘Wooing Mr Wickham’  edited by Michele Roberts. The Short Story vol 2.  The Irish Book of Short Stories Phoenix Orion.  New Writing from British Council / Vintage

Stories in journals

The Massachusetts Review, The Southern Review, The Cimarron Review, Iowa Woman, Paris Atlantic, Passport.


Wasafiri International Fiction Award  2018

Arts Council England -  major bursary

Heinrich Boll Residency Ireland  2017

Joint Winner Michael Marks Award 2014

Lightship Novel Award

Spread the Word Award. London

Eric Gregory Award. Society of Authors.

Donal  MacAmhlaigh / The Irish Post Award

M.A. with Merit in Creative Writing. University of London

Other Writing

‘Recovery Position’  Rack Press. 2014.  

‘In Parallel’  University of Hertfordshire Press. 2011

‘Prussian Blue’ Radio Play  broadcast on RTE Ireland.




Brixton Bookjam. Monday March 6th. 8pm. At The Hootananny. 95 Effra Road. Brixton. SW2 1DF.
Monday March 6th with Tony White, Eamon Somers, Dennis the Poet, Badzelda and Rose Servitova

@BrixtonBookJam  and

Berlin Writers Award 2022. January 12th .Reading at Hallesches Haus, Templehofer. Ufer 1 Berlin with     Rachel Swearinggen, Matthew Perkins, Mary Franklin, Rosemarie Geary, Lukas Reimann and Hillary Millan


                                         London Irish Writers Summer School. June / July. London Met University
                                with Ian Duhig, Ethel Corduff, Brian O'Shea, Sean Donlon, John Leo Waters


Events and Info


enquiries re Caravan of the Lost and Left Behind - contact publisher Kevin Duffy

            Tel: 01422 - 842751

enquries re  Carrying Fire and Water - contact Splice -  or

For readings  or other enquiries -

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