Journalist’s teenage diary is vivid record of life during the Troubles
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Journalist’s teenage diary is vivid record of life during the Troubles

A JOURNALIST whose formative years were set against the backdrop of war-torn Belfast has revealed her live insights on the Troubles period by publishing her teenage diary.

Former BBC news editor Eimear O’Callaghan had always hoped to write a book, she claims, but had never expected it to be a roundup of her most private thoughts as a 16-year-old in West Belfast in 1972.

“For as long as I remember I have dreamed of writing a book, but before June 15, 2010 I never planned on writing this one,” the author of Belfast Days A 1972 Teenage Diary reveals.

“But the seed for Belfast Days was planted when an article I wrote about the Bloody Sunday Enquiry report, containing extracts from my teenage diary, was published,” she added.

“It was the first time that I shared the diary with anyone and I am indebted to the editor who made space for the article that would arouse curiosity about my journal at home and abroad.”

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O’Callaghan’s honest account offers first hand experiences of everything from bombs dropping to riots kicking off and guns being found near her back garden.

Amid her expressions of terror and dread at the extraordinary events unfolding around her, O’Callaghan’s entries also include mentions of boys, fashion and the odd night out, as she attempts to come of age in one of the worst years in the history of the North of Ireland.

Belfast Days A 1972 Teenage Diary was released in Britain on October 23, priced at £14.99. For a discounted price visit www.iap.ie