author, book review, books, Clarion Hotel, Goodreads, historical fiction, Inspiration, Ireland, Life, Literature, reading, Sebastian Barry, Sligo, Sligo Clarion Hotel, St Columbas Hospital, Summer Break, The Secret Scripture, World Lit, writing
As a young woman, Roseanne McNulty was one of the most beautiful and beguiling girls in County Sligo, Ireland. Now, as her hundredth year draws near, she is a patient at Roscommon Regional Mental Hospital, and she decides to record the events of her life.
As Roseanne revisits her past, hiding the manuscript beneath the floorboards in her bedroom, she learns that Roscommon Hospital will be closed in a few months and that her caregiver, Dr. Grene, has been asked to evaluate the patients and decide if they can return to society. Roseanne is of particular interest to Dr. Grene, and as he researches her case he discovers a document written by a local priest that tells a very different story of Roseanneas life than what she recalls. As doctor and patient attempt to understand each other, they begin to uncover long-buried secrets about themselves.
Set against an Ireland besieged by conflict, The Secret Scripture is an epic story of love, betrayal, and unavoidable tragedy, and a vivid reminder of the stranglehold that the Catholic Church had on individual lives for much of the twentieth century.
(Image and story synopsis from goodreads)
In June my husband and I went on vacation to Ireland. This was a trip that we had been planning on and hoping for since we first visited Dublin 12 years ago. We were finally able to come to a point in our lives where it was possible. This trip was one that allowed us to explore more of the country than we had been able to before. We rented a car and, using a travel agency, stayed at different B & Bs throughout the trip. However, besides staying at the B & Bs, we did also stay in a couple hotels towards the end of our travels. One of the hotels we stayed at was the Sligo Clarion Hotel.
The picture above is the one I took when we returned to the hotel from dinner in town. As you can see, the exterior of the building is fascinating and there is obviously a history to it. Strangely though, there is no placard or sign anywhere around the hotel telling of the history of the building. Because of this I obviously turned to Google to find out what I could about the building. Interestingly, and perhaps creepily?, the building was at one time Saint Columbas Hospital – once a psychiatric hospital. Continue reading