Deirdre Conroy

Writer, Historian, Journalist


Deirdre Conroy

Award-winning travel journalist (best newcomer of 2014), I write book reviews and opinion on politics, environment, architecture, art and general chaos.
I'm mother to two male millennials.
I specialize in conservation reports for historic buildings , check out and I'm a law graduate of the Honorable Society of King's Inns, Dublin.
Articles: Irish Independent, Irish Times, Sunday Independent, Apollo, Irish Arts Review



Brexit could make fatal foetal abnormality even more traumatic

The supremacy of Ireland's Constitution over our legislation is such that any challenge to the Constitution must be brought to the Supreme Court, where up to seven judges will decide on the issue. For a traumatised pregnant woman to bring a challenge, she would have to appeal a High Court decision against her.

Fiction: The Woman Next Door by Yewande Omotoso

Hortensia James lives in the small enclave of Katterijn in Cape Town, where the expensive properties were kept by Europeans as their African summer houses. In The Woman Next Door we first meet the 85-year Nigerian, recollecting her arrival there in 1994, with her white husband. She quickly sensed the ugliness beneath the cultivated beauty of the place.

Memoir: Out of Time Mid-Life if you think you're still young by Miranda Sawyer

In her youth, Miranda Sawyer had a plum job as a writer for Smash Hits, a fairly genuine excuse for a hedonistic period of sex, drugs, rock and roll. Then she had an epiphany after the house she rented with other party-goers went on fire. She left her job, bought a black London taxi and took off for France.

As long as Enda Kenny is in power, women like Amanda Mellet will continue to suffer

Last week's ruling by the United Nations Human Rights Committee on Amanda Mellet v Ireland once more brought to global attention the dichotomy in our State system and its treatment of pregnant mothers in cases of fatal foetal abnormality. The UN committee found that our country's prohibition and criminalisation of abortion services violated the human rights of Ms Mellet and had caused her "intense physical and mental suffering".

History: The Celts Search for a Civilization by Alice Roberts

Anthropologist and TV presenter, Alice Roberts, has an enthusiastic style, even if you are not a science or history nerd, you will find her research and wit compelling. A BBC series ties in with the book. Her journey in search of clues to the people who inhabited Europe in the millennia before Rome cast its long shadow over the continent, takes her around Britain, France, Germany, Italy, Portugal, Spain, Switzerland and Turkey.

Short story: Hearing Voices/Seeing Things by William Wall

Some stories in this collection are really short, two pages maybe, but have the welter of an entire life beneath the surface. William Wall overhears and observes the invisible people that walk our streets, figures freighted with loss, with alienation, with dark secrets. The author beckons his reader into a dark corner papered with random images, snatched phrases, worked up into a scene, perhaps in a dingy flat, where a fun-

True crime: A Murder without Motive The Killing of Rebecca Ryle

The taking of a human life is an irreconcilable offence against families, society and natural order. This account tries to uncover meaning in the mindless murder of 19-year-old Rebecca Ryle, a student who only wanted to care for children, the sick and the elderly. Her family had left the UK, seeking a better life in Perth, Western Australia in 2003.

Let's focus on city's long-term needs - not a war about height

Height is not everything. When it comes to our buildings and streetscape, quality of design, finish and materials really matter. Internal size really matters. After days of tension, Dublin City councillors voted on Wednesday night to increase the permissible height in low-rise areas to 24m, or eight storeys - that's two storeys higher than at present.

We've seen it all before: HSE probe into deaths is too little too late

When you are pregnant, your doctor may well tell you that it is a natural condition, it is not an illness, you don't need to alter your lifestyle unless you smoke or drink heavily. It is a long nine months, but the wait and the weight will be worth it. Some women will choose to have a natural labour, as in no medication, at home, even in a birthing pool, with the aid of a community midwife.

Crime: Art in the Blood by Bonnie MacBird

The challenge to capture the style of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's immortal sleuth has been undertaken by many writers, in TV, film and fiction. In this latest contribution to the Sherlock canon, MacBird cleverly handles the conceit by 'finding' a lost manuscript at the British Library, written by Dr Watson.

Revisiting Austen's conundrums of love and marriage

The Bennet family has migrated to suburban Cincinnati. In Curtis Sittenfeld's Eligible, the dialogue is modern American, but the narrative voice is cleverly remodelled from Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice. The five unmarried daughters are defined by a range of contemporary relationship issues. Intrauterine insemination (IUI), an affair with a married man and serial doomed relationships are thrown into the mix of the single girl's challenges en route to the marriage license, or not as the case may be.

There is no room for 'balance' when an upset mother is being attacked

It takes courage to speak openly about a private tragedy. I have found that by doing so, you can help many others to heal if they have suffered a similar sadness. Helping others is not to be dismissed. Our mental health can waver when faced with tragedy. Our mental health can really suffer when this little country refuses to provide medical services for women in crisis.


Deirdre Conroy

Life is full of surprises, some you don't recognise as a good thing - quite the opposite. The twists and turns of my career have brought me from the corporate world to establishing my own design business. Adding a degree in English and History of Art and Architecture, a masters in Palladian architecture and another masters in urban and building conservation between 1994 and 2005. I think my two sons have survived it.

As an architectural historian, I write conservation reports for planning applications on historic buildings.

As a journalist, I contribute opinion and reviews to national newspapers.

I've written my first novel and recently returned to study. This time it's law and who knows where that will lead.

Through all of this what has become clear is a love of travel, analysis and writing.

Now, back to business... Commissions welcome.



  • Literary Review
  • Travel Writing
  • News Analysis
  • Art Criticism
  • Architectural Review
  • Sailing
  • Skiing