I’m joined today by Irish author Tadhg Coakley who sharing #TenThings he’d like his readers to know about him and his work. His latest novel is Whatever It Takes and you can order a copy of it here. Thanks to Kelly at Love Books Group for inviting me to be part of the tour.
- I worked full-time as a librarian for over 30 years. Now I work part-time as an environmental consultant, but most of the time I’m writing books such as Whatever It Takes.
- I have one thing in common with Collins, the lead character in Whatever It Takes – we both played hurling for Cork. But he was a much better player than me …
- My first book, The First Sunday in September (2018) was incredibly well received. Donal Ryan said it was ‘vibrant and authentic, brimming with intensity and desire’. It was well reviewed in the Irish Times, Irish Independent, Sunday Independent, Irish Examiner, The Echo and elsewhere.
- My favourite writer is Kate Atkinson. I especially love her Jackson Brodie series of crime books, they have such a light touch. I also greatly admire Elizabeth Strout; her novel Anything is Possible is simply wonderful.
- Another favourite crime writer is Peter Temple, the great Australian novelist. But I also love Tana French, Karin Fossum, Fred Vargas, Jo Nesbo, James Lee Burke and Henning Mankell and I can read and re-read all of Andrea Camilleri’s Montalbano series again and again.
- I spent almost all the time during the Covid-19 lockdown writing my next book after Whatever It Takes, along with walking and listening to music.
- I listen to ambient music, quiet jazz, movie scores and classical when I’m writing, but in the evenings during lockdown I listened mostly to old comforting classics by Joni Mitchell, Jackson Browne, Leonard Cohen, Crosby Still Nash & Young – all the ’60s and ’70s greats – Joni, especially.
- Before writing each scene in Whatever It Takes, I walked around the location, getting a feel for the place and figuring out what features of the locale I could use.
- The hardest thing about writing Whatever It Takes was the violence – especially the threat of violence against one particular character. That took me a lot of time to work out and some sleepless nights!
- The easiest thing about writing the book was the dialogue. I have a good ear for that and I talk all the drafts of the scenes out loud in the voices (and accents) of the characters. Then I record them all, listen back to them and rework them until they sound right for me. I enjoy writing dialogue, maybe that helps.
From the back of the book
Set in Cork city, Detective Garda Collins is at war with the leading local criminal, Dominic Molloy. Unwilling to accept the human degradation caused by Molloy’s drugs, violence and prostitution. He has made up his mind to bring Molloy down, but just how far is he willing to go to make that happen? What is he willing to do and what fall-out will ensue for himself and his garda colleagues? This tense crime novel (the first in a series featuring Collins) tells the story of two immovable forces colliding. Something has to give. Running out of time before the murder of two teenagers becomes inevitable, and with a traitor in the garda station feeding information back to Molloy, Collins takes his battle to new heights. He is determined to win, whatever the cost, whatever it takes.
More about the author
Tadhg Coakley is from Mallow and lives in Cork city. His debut novel The First Sunday in September was shortlisted forthe Mercier Press fiction prize and was published in 2018 to much acclaim. His sports writing has appeared in The Irish Examiner and The Holly Bough. He has also been published in The Stinging Fly, The Honest Ulsterman, Silver Apples,Quarryman and the From the Well anthology. He is a graduate of the MA in Creative Writing course at University College Cork. www.tadhgcoakley.com