Literary Programme 2017

Lisa Harding

Lisa Harding

Lisa Harding

Bantry Bookshop

Sat 15 July 2017



Sometimes it feels as if three minutes has passed when it’s been three days, and three nights pass like a shiver of wind through the trees. I can’t tell shadows from bodies, voices from spirits. Luca’s face becomes an unknown man’s face, me under him, then the man’s face becomes Luca’s and I want to reach out and smash it…

Sammy is a spiky, quick-witted and sharp teenager living in Dublin; Nico is a warm and conscientious girl from Moldova. When they are thrown together in a Dublin brothel in a horrific twist of fate, a peculiar and important bond is formed…

This is a novel about a flourishing but hidden world, thinly concealed beneath a veneer of normality. It’s about the failings of polite society, the cruelty that can exist in apparently homely surroundings, the bluster of youth and the often appalling weakness of adults.

Harvesting is heartbreaking and funny, gritty, raw and breathtakingly beautiful, evoking a world where redemption is found in friendship and unexpected acts of kindness. It was inspired by Lisa’s involvement with a campaign against sex trafficking run by the Children’s Rights Alliance. Although it is a fictionalised account, the novel has been read and approved of by representatives for NGOs in both Moldova and Dublin.

Harvesting is shocking – and shockingly good. It is thought-provoking, anger-provoking, guilt-provoking, and – most importantly – it is a brilliantly written novel.’Roddy Doyle

‘A terrific piece of work… engaging and darkly compelling.’Catherine Dunne

‘A brilliantly written, heartfelt, heart-breaking tale of two young girls, its lucid breadth and depths read like an indictment of our patriarchal globe.’Anthony Glavin

Lisa Harding completed an MPhil in creative writing at Trinity College Dublin in 2014. Her short story ‘Counting Down’ was a winner in the inaugural Doolin Writer’s Prize in 2013. Other stories have been published in The Dublin Review, The Bath Short Story Anthology and have been short-listed and highly commended in various competitions including Fish, Cuirt, Listowel, RTE Guide/Penguin Ireland awards. Plays have been produced at The Project Arts Centre, Theatre503 and Battersea Arts Centre in London. A new play, Pedigree, was awarded an Arts Council bursary and a Peggy Ramsay award. She has just been awarded a DLR Professional Development Arts grant for her prose writing. As an actress she has appeared at the Gate, the Abbey, the Lyric, Project Theatre and on RTÉ, playing Connie in Fair City among others. Harvesting is her first novel. 

Dedicated to the memory of John O'Mahony
This year's Bantry Bookshop readings are dedicated to the memory of John O'Mahony who passed away in February. John was a native of Bantry who started his journalism career with RTE and spent many years in New York as a journalist with the Irish Echo, the New York Post and Bloomberg Businessweek. You may read more about John's life and work here.