Áine Greaney


Boston author and essayist from Ireland


Coming in spring 2019:  Green Card and Other Essays

This essay collection (Wising Up Press) provides a particular insight into the experience of being a contemporary immigrant in the U.S.A.    

As a collection, the book maps the journey from newbie to native, as it addresses the perennial and universal immigrant themes of displacement, identity and the search for an existential or temporal home. 

The book’s title piece, "Green Card" was cited in Best American Essays 2013, and “Sanctuary” was nominated for a Pushcart Prize.

I am especially proud that my essay, "Saint Patrick's Day" was adapted by the nonprofit Facing History and Ourselves as part of its diversity curriculum at Boston Latin, America's oldest public high school. 

The essays have individually appeared or been broadcast in outlets such as Salon, WBUR’s/NPR CognoscentiThe Irish TimesNuméro Cinq, The DrumNew Hibernia Review and other publications.

If you would like to be on the mailing list to learn about my 2019 public readings and presentations, send me an email.

Sample the collection's opening essay here. 

Dance Lessons - Novel


A contemporary novel set in rural Ireland and greater Boston, released in April 2011. Order the book from your local independent bookstore or get hard copy and Kindle online.  I retain T.V. and film rights. Inquires here.

Shortlisted for the Rubery International Book Award (U.K.) and selected as a Top Ten Irish Summer Read by IrishCentral. Placed second in the literary fiction category of the IndieLit awards.  It was also one of 20 books chosen by the Women's National Book Association for National Reading Group Month. 

A beautiful examination of three women’s lives, this novel deftly explores both relationships and solitude, with Ireland’s gorgeous countryside as backdrop. — Booklist

The author is able to capture emotional nuance with minimal flourish; her characters emerge as strong individuals confronting unexpected pain. — Publishers Weekly

Dance Lessons is filled with longing, and redemption. It is also filled with beauty and promise. The writing is lovely and poignant and begs the reader’s empathy. Dance Lessons will leave the reader wanting more. — Story Circle Book Reviews

There are moments when the beauty of Áine Greaney’s prose dominates all else: gently rhythmic sentences, descriptions of sights and sounds and smells that stimulate the reader’s senses. At other times the hushed drama of futile hopes and despairing lives prevails. Greaney makes subtle changes in the narrative voice as the novel shifts from rural to urban, from the United States to Ireland to England, from older characters to younger ones. Both in prose style and in content, Greaney crafted a mesmerizing novel. Rating: Highly Recommended — Tzer Island Book Reviews

Dance Lessons progresses fluidly, albeit slowly, through past, present, and even future. This is not a fast paced story, nor do I think it should have been. There are some surprises thrown in along the way …. All in all, Aine Greaney’s Dance Lessons is a perfect choice for book groups. There’s plenty to talk about and the setting is amazing. — Roundtable Book Reviews

…Intriguing …haunting …I got completely wrapped up in the drama of their lives and couldn’t stop reading. While I would have loved more detail at the end of the book, I also feel that it fits with the story overall and it works. This story has really stayed with me and continues to occupy my thoughts. — A Book Geek

I LOVED this novel — the setting is beautiful and charming but the characters are really what captivated me. They are well drawn with a depth that includes their faults but also what they could not help — the legacy forced upon them. I highly recommend this book! — Books in the City

Greaney’s approach is a refreshing one, as is a happy ending that is not based on romance. It is about a woman learning to love herself and enabling others to do the same. — IndieReader Houston

Writer with a Day Job


Provides inspiration, tips and guidelines for creative writers who also hold down a job (that’s most of us). It was released in June 2011 by Writers Digest Books. Order from your local bookstore or Amazon.

Author Áine Greaney gives you the exercises, inspiration, and techniques you need to build creative expression into your daily life and establish the productive writing life you’ve always wanted. — Writers Digest Books

This isn't some dry, pedantic creative-writerly manual. It offers the usual specific tutorials on technique—character creation, dialogue, what NOT to do, adverbs, etc.—but in entertaining, anecdotal, laugh-out-loud prose. — M.A. Harper, via Amazon.com.

Writer with a Day Job provides an invaluable collection of exercises to help integrate a side career of writing with a regular day gig. It's a talented dance to keep the daily grind of a job from sapping a writer's energy: this tells how to achieve that balance, providing exercises, ideas, and techniques to build creative expression into a daily work cycle. From planning a writing getaway to using one's lunch hour for writing, this is filled with keys to a writer's success, and is a pick for any literary or writer's collection. — Midwest Book Review, via Amazon.com

Read an excerpt. Fresh ideas that expand on the book can be found on my blog

Published in 2014:  eBook Short Stories Set in Ireland

Two  eBooks  from Pixel Hall Press.  Publication dates: June 20th and December 21, 2014; available in all eBook formats. 

Snow is a short story set in a one-street town in the middle of Ireland. It's about Dolores, an expatriate woman who is summoned home to Ireland to care for her sick and estranged father. 

La Belle Femme is a short story set in Galway and the midlands of Ireland. It's about a middle-aged illicit couple who, when trouble brews in their respective marriages, have no idea how to end their long-term affair. 

Read more about Snow and La Belle Femme.  Book clubs, Pixel Hall has published a study guide with discussion questions about this multi-layered short story. These questions will get the conversation going. 

The Sheepbreeders Dance and Other Stories


Is a short collection of short fiction published by Flume Press. The book was selected for the Flume Press fiction prize, 2006.


The Big House


 Set in a remote village in the west of Ireland, the story  open when John McHugh, a wealthy expatriate developer, buys and starts to refurbish the village's Downton-Abbey-styled house. 

What ensues is a pitched battle between the old and the new, the native and newly arrived, between history and forgetting. Added to the excitement is the reluctant romance between John the developer and Susan, the great granddaughter of the house's last British land agent, who has returned to Ireland looking for her family's Colonial-era roots. 

One thing is sure: The tiny, gossipy village of Rathloe is never going to be quite the same again.

It is now out of print, though some used copies are available through Amazon. I retain T.V. and film rights, which can be arranged via my agent. 


Im Honiglicht


The German language version of The Big house, published by Blanvalet, an imprint of Random House. It’s also available through Amazon. I have a copy on my bookshelves, but unfortunately, I do not read German.

Copyright 2011-2014 Aine Greaney