About the author and her work
Therese Down was born in St. Albans, Hertfordshire, to Irish parents. She retired from teaching English in her role as Curriculum Leader, in a Birmingham Sixth Form College, in 2018, and is presently a full time PhD student at the University of Nottingham, and, of course, continues to write. She is also a part time English tutor to GCSE and A Level examination students.
Therese has three lovely, grown up children, a very cute dog, and an equally cute-if-infinitely-more -cunning cat, and lives in Worcestershire, UK.
Novels to date
Only with Blood
This is a gritty, often harrowing, but remarkably well written novel, that explores life in rural Tipperary
during WW2, when Ireland took an officially neutral stance in the war between England and Germany. But the illegal IRA had other ideas, and sought to assist a German invasion of the UK, via Northern Irish coastal points. Caught up in the violence of covert domestic political factions and the less arcane concerns of increasing poverty, the characters of this powerful novel experience fear, betrayal and rarely, love, while being forced to re-evaluate assumptions about what ultimately matters.
"Beautifully written, with crisscrossing, captivating storylines, 'Only With Blood' reveals tenderness and trauma, accompanied by welcome touches of transformation. A great read!" Catherine Campbell
The End of Law
This is a dark, but enlightening, account of how life in Germany during the decade 1933 - 43 was corrupted and perverted by Hitler's Nazism but particularly, by the T4 programme that institutionalised the murder of those considered to be "unworthy of life" - "Lebensunwertes Leben".
A signed mandate from the Fuehrer himself ordered doctors to euthanase children born deformed or mentally defective, and was soon applied to older children and mentally ill adults. Assigned to various duties associated with the annihilation and disposal of 'the unworthies', SS Officers Gunther and Muller have opposing views regarding the ethical and humane aspects of such a national policy. Increasingly compromised by his conscience, Muller struggles in his post, while his colleague, Gunther, becomes ever more vicious and inured to suffering, and rises to a senior SS rank. The problem is, their lives are inextricably interwoven in ways neither could have anticipated, and Muller is soon arousing Gunther's suspicions.
"A powerful and compassionate book looking into the heart of human dilemma, corruption, and redemption. This is a gripping story of depth and insight."Penelope Wilcock, author of The Hawk and the Dove (03/27/2016)
Claire Cavendish is a London Commercial Lawyer whose lifestyle defines success. But when her sixteen-year-old daughter, Annaliese, is diagnosed with osteosarcoma, and her husband, Jeremy, says he wants to begin an affair, wealth and success are poor levees against rising tides of grief, panic and the re-surfacing of past trauma, as Claire’s life breaks down.
When Jeremy insists they sell Orchard House, their opulent London home, the stage is set for the advent of Matthew Summers, a young Estate Agent, whose own life is profoundly affected by the people who occupy the house he must sell.
The Estate Agent is a story of lives in free-fall, when there is nothing left to control. However, it is also a story of courage, and the extraordinary beauty of life below the surface, that will challenge the most cynical to defend their view, that death is the nemesis of possibility.
Reader reviews of The Estate Agent (Amazon):
"Gutted to have finished this gripping, at times, harrowing and tragic, layered and simultaneously uplifting, hope-filled novel."
"I loved reading End of Law and The Estate Agent was no less enjoyable! The experiences of the characters are told so convincingly, I was moved to tears. Beautifully written and a truly wonderful read!"
"Therese Down’s third novel is yet another impressive display of her talent as a gifted and versatile writer. The Estate Agent, which explores thought provoking and essential truths, is exceptional in its portrayal of parental grief, adolescent hope, and the mysteries of life’s incredible journey."