Connect with us


2024 Limerick Literary Festival programme celebrates 40 years of the festival



Novelist Dan Mooney (pictured left) launched the 2024 Limerick Literary Festival programme at a special event at O’Mahony’s Bookshop. Photo: Limerick Literary Festival in honour of Kate O’Brien Facebook

Novelist Dan Mooney launches The 2024 Limerick Literary Festival programme celebrating the festival’s 40th anniversary

Novelist Dan Mooney launches The 2024 Limerick Literary Festival programme celebrating the festival's 40th anniversary

Novelist Dan Mooney launched the programme for The Limerick Literary Festival at an event in O’Mahony’s Bookshop, Limerick on Wednesday, January 24.

The Festival will run in Limerick February 23rd, 24th and 25th at the Dooradoyle Library and Belltable and continues to honour the life and works of the Limerick author, Kate O’Brien while attracting prominent participants from all over the world.

The Limerick Literary Festival is this year celebrating its 40th anniversary alongside the 50th anniversary of the death of O’Brien.  It originally started as The Kate O’Brien Weekend in 1984 to mark the tenth anniversary of her death and continues to celebrate the legacy of Kate O’Brien each year and her impact as a writer.


At the first Kate O’Brien Weekend in 1984 to mark the tenth anniversary of Kate’s death, the poet Eavan Boland spoke of Kate’s legacy and of the enduring quality of her work saying that “by accepting that if a work of art is good it is good not because it is feminine, but because it is human”.

She went on to end her talk with the following words of wisdom, that by remembering writers who were banned during their lifetimes “we will have discharged our debt to writers like Kate O’Brien, who made their way in a harder time, unaware of the gratitude we now feel and unable to benefit from it.  Who told their own truth and therefore made the way safe for ours. And now we, in turn, have to make a truth which justifies that safe passage”.

Building on this significant history, the Limerick Literary Festival seeks to promote Limerick nationally as a place of literary excellence and to provide a platform where readers can meet their favourite authors and other readers.

The 2024 Festival will be opened with an intimate evening of words and music by spoken word artist and musician Denise Chaila and the full weekend programme feature authors Vona Groarke, Mary Morrissy, Antoine Laurain, Francis Spufford, Dorothy Cross, Dr Jana Fischerova, Elaine Feeney and Jane Clarke.

The festival will also feature perennial favourite Desert Island Books and a session with Poetry Pharmacist William Sieghart and the presentation of the 2024 Kate O’Brien Award for a debut novel from a female Irish author, the winner of the Award will be chosen from the following shortlist made up of Slant by Katherine O’Donnell published by New Island Books; The Red Bird Sings by Aoife Fitzpatrick published by Virago’ and The Last Days of Joy by Anne Tiernan published by Hachette.

The Festival will close on Sunday the 25th  with internationally renowned author Claire Keegan. The festival is generously supported by the Arts Council, Limerick City and County Council and French Embassy in Ireland.

“Literature is forever the lamp of truth…” Kate O’Brien

Find out more about the Limerick Literary Festival
Read more Literature stories

Richard is a presenter, producer, songwriter and actor. He was named the Limerick Person of the Year (2011) and won an online award at the Metro Éireann Media and Multicultural Awards (2011) for promoting multi-culturalism online. Richard says that the concept is very much a community driven project that aims to document life in Limerick. So, that in 20 years time people can look back and remember the events that were making the headlines.