Set in Cork city, Detective Garda Collins is at war with the leading local criminal, Dominic Molloy. Unwilling to accept the human degradation caused by Molloy’s drugs, violence and prostitution. He has made up his mind to bring Molloy down, but just how far is he willing to go to make that happen? What is he willing to do and what fall-out will ensue for himself and his garda colleagues? This tense crime novel (the first in a series featuring Collins) tells the story of two immovable forces colliding. Something has to give. Running out of time before the murder of two teenagers becomes inevitable, and with a traitor in the garda station feeding information back to Molloy, Collins takes his battle to new heights. He is determined to win, whatever the cost, whatever it takes.
1. Do you always take a book/e-reader wherever you go?
I almost always have a book with me, especially when on the move, in a café, bar, plane or train. I prefer a physical book, the feel of it and its reality. It’s a great comfort to know a book is there for me whenever I need it. But when travelling abroad I will use my Kindle, having uploaded several books in advance.
2. Say someone asks if they can use your name in a book. Would you rather be the ‘good one’ or the ‘bad one’?
I would much prefer to be the ‘bad one’, that would be very interesting – but maybe depending on how ‘bad’ and to whom.
3. Where can I find you when you are reading?
Almost anywhere. In a café or bar, on a train or plane, in a park or on a beach. At home in my living room or in bed – in the garden when it’s warm enough.
4. Where can I find you when you are not writing/reading?
Almost every morning I will be at work at my desk, writing. Apart from that I’m walking a lot lately and cycling around our neighbourhood. Because of the current lockdown we can’t travel far but I get out for a walk/cycle twice a day, these days. In the old ‘normal’ I would spend a lot of time in Cork city, in bookshops, cafés, libraries, bars (with friends). I used to watch films and sport on TV but I find I can’t lately, for some strange reason.
5. Can you walk past a bookstore without going inside?
Not the first one, anyway! It’s one of the things I missed most in lockdown: the presence of books in bookshops and libraries.
6. What are you most proud of?
Having my first book (The First Sunday in September) published in 2018 when I was 57 was a proud moment. But having anything published does make me proud. It takes a lot of work and it takes guts to write and send out material.
7. What goes through your mind when you hold your new book in your hands for the first time?
That has, as yet, only happened to me once. I’m very much looking forward to that feeling for Whatever It Takes. It’s a great joy and a great vindication that I’m not (totally) crazy to write.
8. What piece of advice would you give to aspiring writers?
Don’t give up. Keep learning, keep failing, keep going. Make friends in writing and stay in touch with them. Read everything you possibly can.
9. Who would you like/have liked to interview?
Frank O’Connor would be good. Kafka, maybe, after he had a few drinks …
10. When and where do you prefer to write?
In the morning, as early as possible at my desk. I begin to fade in the afternoon. As often as possible, it takes a lot of time.
Thank you, Tadhg Coakley and Love Books Group
About the author
Tadhg Coakley is from Mallow and lives in Cork city. His debut novel The First Sunday in September was shortlisted forthe Mercier Press fiction prize and was published in 2018 to much acclaim. His sports writing has appeared in The Irish Examiner and The Holly Bough. He has also been published in The Stinging Fly, The Honest Ulsterman, Silver Apples,Quarryman and the From the Well anthology. He is a graduate of the MA in Creative Writing course at University College Cork.