ABOUT BRIAN O’HARE ~ by Brian
Brian O’Hare, MA, Ph.D., is a retired assistant director of a large regional college of further and higher education. Married, three children, ten grandchildren, one great grandchild. He plays golf three times a week off a ten handicap and does a lot of voluntary work. Any writing he has previously done was academic…very much restricted to a very specific readership. Several articles in educational journals were followed by a number of book-length reports for the Dept. of Education and the University of Ulster.
He has also written an interesting biography of a man who daily performs amazing miracles of healing…The Miracle Ship. That’s with an American publisher…hopefully to be published within the next year. (There are some seriously fascinating episodes in that for a blog…if he gets around to starting one!)
He had a liver disease since childhood which resulted in him taking early retirement a number of years ago. In 2002 he had a liver transplant but is strong and healthy now. He continued to do academic writing well into his retirement and followed that with a memoir about his liver transplant, dealing with the physical, emotional and spiritual experiences that came from that period in his life (A Spiritual Odyssey, published by Columba Press, Dublin).
Recently he experienced a desire to write fiction. Hence Fallen Men. It is a story about three priests…but it is religious in much the same way Thornbirds was religious. He has also finsihed a second book (see BOOKS). It’s quite different from Fallen Men… a detective mystery inspired by an old 14th centure painting of the Last Judgement. It’s called “The Doom Murders”. He is currently writing a third book, “The 11.05 Killings” featuring the same detectives as in The Doom Murders.
(all descriptions can be found on Brian’s blog and Amazon)
Published on Amazon Kindle in September 2012, is a story of three priests. All are good, spiritual men so why does young Father Ray Canavan Ray find himself on trial in a Dublin court for statutory rape of a minor? And why is his equally popular friend, Father Dan Patterson, raucously accused of murder by a member of his congregation as he attempts to celebrate a Requiem Mass? And why does Canon Tony Mulholland so lose sight of his priestly responsibilities that he tries to cover up Ray’s indiscretions by sending him to hide in Italy ?
Fallen Men touches on dark themes but ultimately it is a novel of redemption. It is a story that will bring tears to many eyes and characters who will remain in your heart long after you have put the book down. John Anthony, publisher, says: “Anyone who has read and enjoyed Colleen McCullough’s Thornbirds will also enjoy Fallen Men.”
Praise for Fallen Men
Fallen Men has received seven reviews since it was published. Among the comments expressed are:
“Fallen Men is as good an example of quality fiction writing as I have seen
gritty, serious and thought-provoking… The reader is left at the end with a
positive feast in the way of food for thought. This is something very few
writers have the ability to do, thus ensuring that Fallen Men is not only an
entertaining book but also, vitally, a very memorable one.” (A. Grey)
“Brian O’Hare has talent to describe people and situations without boring the reader. He can also make you enter the characters’ thoughts so you are deeply into the situation with them. And he creates real people, defected, sometimes weak, sometimes strong people. Priests, lay people… they are all real in a way you can relate to them here… Fallen Men is an excellent, well-written story.”
(Renata F. Barcelos)
“’Fallen Men is a wonderful book! It was absolutely ‘unputdownable’ from start to finish. The plot was gripping and I found myself absolutely enmeshed in the lives and dilemmas of the beautifully penned characters! The author clearly has his finger on the pulse of our modern era and challenges us to think about many areas of life! A skilfully written and most enjoyable read!” (Sr. Treasa Davey)
As I mentioned on the blog page, Fallen Men received this award on January 16th, 2013.
My second novel has just been published on Amazon Kindle (December 2012) and represents an even more dramatic change of genre. This time I have written a murder mystery set in Belfast. Echoes of ‘the Troubles’ and their lingering aftermath are never far from the surface but these echoes are just background. The story,the themes and the plot have a much more general appeal.
What triggered The Doom Murders? Among my various interests, I like to read about art and have many books on artists from all over the world. I was browsing through one of these books and spent some time contemplating a painting of The Last Judgement by a fifteenth century artist, Rogier van der Weyden. For some reason, a piece of advice to writers from Stephen King came into my head. King said, “Always ask ‘why?’, or ‘what if?’ “. I was studying the distorted figures of the damned souls hurtling down into the abyss and wondered: “What if a Chief Inspector was faced by a series of gruesome murders and found the bodies posed in strange and grotesque shapes identical to those on this Doom?” And came the next question, “Why would anyone want to do that?”
From these two questions came the inspiration for a new story and The Doom Murders was written. Dooms are mediaeval paintings of The Last Judgement. The killer in this novel has been inspired in his “work” by the painting of The Last Judgement by Rogier van der Weyden.
This “work” comes to the notice of Chief Inspector Jim Sheehan when a number of high profile figures in Belfast are brutally murdered. The bodies are left naked and oddly distorted. No clues are left at the forensically immaculate crime scenes except seemingly pointless theatrical props and some random numbers and letters. Sheehan is baffled. How are the victims linked? What message is the murderer trying to send via the vaguely religious symbolism of the killings? Faced with one of the most complex cases of his career, the Chief Inspector turns to an eminent Professor of Psychology at Queen’s University and a senior cleric who is a biblical expert. With their help, he begins to piece together some understanding of the killer’s psychopathy but can he learn enough to identify the killer and put an end the murders?
Praise for The Doom Murders
Brian O’Hare has written a wonderful whodunit. The Doom Murders will keep you guessing until the very end. I really liked Inspector Sheehan. He is a fully developed character and his budding romance with Margaret is charming and endearing. The murders are properly sensational. I was a wee bit disappointed that the killer’s habit of numbering the bodies were scripture references as I guessed that well before Inspector O’Hare. It was a wee bit predictable that it was a religious nut acting out God’s commands to purge the populace, but O’Hare’s writing is so splendid I was respectfully in for the ride. I am liberal about typos, but there were too many here. The book was just too good to allow them! This could easily be a Masterpiece Theater, a show or a movie. It’s that good. And anything wrong in the edit is a super easy fix. So fix it, please, as this story deserves to be pristine. The writing surely is. What a talent Mr. O’Hare is. Deeply impressed. Bravo.
A Spiritual Odyssey
is the compelling story of a six-year journey that took the author on two converging paths – a burgeoning spirituality, and a dramatic physical degeneration that took the author to the doors of death. It is essentially a witness to the miraculous grace of God, and how it reaches into both soul and body. The author struggles with questions of a theological nature, but not in an academic way. The questions emerge from the practical, often confusing circumstances, in which the author finds himself and he tries to understand his growing spirituality and to seek intimacy with Jesus.
The Miracle Ship
YOU WON’T BELIEVE WHAT YOU’RE READING BUT EVERY WORD IS TRUE!! Do you believe in miracles? Do you believe in demonic possession? Do you believe in exorcism? A little girl with irreparable brain damage was pronounced dead by two hospital specialists. Today she is a healthy teenager. A teenage boy whose spine was crushed by a lorry was diagnosed as permanently paralysed. He now plays football with his friends. A curse that brought death over five generations has been lifted. People tormented by demons have been set free. How were such miracles wrought? What do they have in common? They have John Gillespie in common. Who is he? How has he been gifted with such extraordinary power? The Miracle Ship tells John’s story. But it does so much more than that. Yes, the book essentially focuses on miracles. Yes, it contains many extraordinary stories of healing and deliverance. Yes, it focuses strongly on the spiritual warfare that so many Christians are engaged in without any awareness of its dangers. But the book goes to the very heart of what is needed to find healing and deliverance. It tells of the obstacles and difficulties that get in the way of true healing prayer. It reveals the many pitfalls that lie in wait in seemingly innocent healing practices. It spells out in detail the serious dangers that underpin many apparently beneficial New Age therapies. And it offers many examples of the kinds of prayers and life-styles that can bring healing to the body and to the mind. It can even turn around lives that are falling apart (and this has already been several times communicated to the author or John Gillespie by people who have already read this book on Kindle.) This is a book that should be read by all Christians. John’s message is profoundly insightful and, if it is uncompromising, it is laced with faith, forgiveness and truth. Many who have already read the book have described it as ‘life-changing.’ This true account of his life, of the miracles and deliverances that follow his prayers, will amaze you. Millions of people love to hear and read about miracles. Sr. Briege McKenna’s book Miracles Do Happen has sold all over the world in its millions. If you read and liked Miracles Do Happen, you’ll love The Miracle Ship
Praise for The Miracle Ship
… This is a very practical book as it details many things that can prevent one’s healing. For instance, involvement in the occult, negative patterns of speech or thought, or even possession of certain items in your home can allow demons to invade. If someone has an illness that doctors cannot seem to understand or heal, Gillespie prays and is often given information from the Holy Spirit about the reason for the trouble. Idolatry, not pursuing a relationship with God, and unrepentant sin can all hinder healing and must be addressed. Gillespie has a gift for listening to God about the specific reason in any case and then holds a frank discussion with the ill person asking, in effect, “Do you really wish to be healed?” Helpful information is in the appendices such as lists of items and practices which could lure a demonic spirit into your life. With his remarkable success rate, the church should take notice of this man and his ministry. You won’t be disappointed if you read Brian O’Hare’s The Miracle Ship.