Beth Downes is a quiet, unassuming woman. Attractive, though careless in her appearance, she works hard, living only for her teenage son, Jesse. But Beth has been keeping secrets and when Jesse dies following a drug-fuelled night out, a very different woman emerges. Beth had always refused to tell Jesse who his father was, an issue that they fought about just before his death. Now, compounded by grief, guilt, regret and the need to find out the truth of who is responsible for her son's death, she will journey back to her old life, before Jesse, to a sordid past, and to the man she tried so desperately to forget. She has come full circle, and with nothing left now but her memories, the need for revenge and justice scratches inside her veins.
"The writing here is sparse, powerful, and the novel's greatest strength. Every page has a memorable line. Beth is a complex, relatable, and well drawn character. The supporting cast is equally well developed and distinct." - Booklife Prize 2017
“The book has something—drive, pace, a feeling for the Dublin city centre drug scene and the welfare class milieu—and particularly a really well-judged scale. The number of players, the speed of the plot and the extent to which they interact with each other have a satisfying correctness to them.”
"Beth has never told her son who his father is. She wants nothing more than to protect him, so it’s best he doesn’t know. The memories are too painful for Beth and there is nothing to be gained by revisiting them. Then tragedy strikes and Beth is lefty with no option but to deal with the aspects of her past she would rather forget.
Jesse wants to live his life, his own way, without his mother watching his every move. Why must she be so clingy? Can’t she see how suffocating she is being?
Lady Beth is a fast-paced tale of Dublin’s underworld; a tale of the affects of crime and drugs not only on those involved, but on the people around them. Farrell’s writing is taut and grabs your attention immediately."