Jamie O’Connell's debut novel Diving for Pearls published by Doubleday in June 2021.
Jamie was Highly Commended for the Costa Short Story Award 2018, short-listed for the Maeve Binchy Travel Award and the Sky Arts Futures Fund, and long-listed for BBC Radio 4 Opening Lines Short Story Competition.
He has received bursaries from The Arts Council of Ireland, Culture Ireland, Dublin City Council and Cork City Council. He has previously taught creative writing in University College Dublin and worked for Penguin Random House.
He was on the committee of Dublin Book Festival (2014-16) and one of the judges of the Irish Bookseller of the Year Award 2018.
He has an MA and an MFA from University College Dublin.
Praise for Diving for Pearls
“A hugely engaging novel from a talented new writer.”
“A compelling tale uncovering a world of secrets, injustice and, for the lucky few, escape.”
“Shimmering, beguiling and ruthless. A fizzing and assured debut”
“What a world Jamie O'Connell has created. I could feel the oppressive heat of the Dubai sun and the sparkle of it's promises - A triumphant debut novel”
“Sprawling and encompassing so many worlds, it's utterly gripping. Excellent”
Sophie White, author of Corpsing
“A total page-turner... A fantastic novel”
“This page-turner is the debut offering from Cork writer O'Connell and a sign of great things to come from him”
“Loved this book... A really fantastic read”
Sinéad Moriarty, Sinéad and Rick's Summer Must Reads
“We may not make it on a sun holiday this summer, but we can still treat ourselves to 'devote entire days by the pool to them' kind of books you devour on a break. Jamie O'Connell's first novel, Diving for Pearls, is just such a one – an instantly gripping page-turner set around a death in Dubai.”
The Sunday Independent
“Jamie O’Connell holds tender control over his story and still brings the literary magic of the written word to the page. There were so many beautiful sentences; I read slowly so as not to miss anything and I was rewarded a hundred times over with the beauty of the text. I may never go to Dubai but I won’t forget the stories I read here.”