The Black Inked Pearl

A novel about self discovery, but written in a way you are immersed

About The Book

This prize-winning epic romance opens with the young Irish girl Kate running away across the Donegal strand, panicked, from her young lover’s first (attempted) kiss, then, after a tumultuous reappraisal by the great Congo river, finds she must spend her life seeking.

Searching for him she encounters some very realistic people and situations on earth, but also must visit hell, where she suffers greatly, a dream-filled paradise, and Columba’s great heavenly archive.

At agonising cost she saves her dying love and to her utter joy they walk together toward heaven. But at the gates he walks on, forgetting her, and leaving her, distraught and alone, in the dust as the gates close behind him. He in turn searches for her and at last finds her, but to his fury (and renewed hurt) is not ecstatically recognised and thanked. And the gates are still shut.

On a secret back way to heaven guided by a little beetle, Kate repeatedly saves her still scornful love, but at the very last, despite Kate’s fatal inability with numbers and through an ultimate sacrifice, he saves her from the precipice and they reach heaven. Kate finally realises that although her quest for her love was not vain, in the end something more was needed for she had to find herself – the unexpected pearl.

The novel, poetic, riddling, multi-level, and born in sleep and dream, is interlaced with the ambiguity between this world and another. The epilogue again brings out the key themes of the novel – the eternity of love and the ever-puzzling ambiguity between dream and reality.

The first edition of Black Inked Pearl, the first published of Finnegan’s distinguished Kate-Pearl series and in its way both a stirring romance and a spiritual parable, has won many prizes and positive reviews (for which see the first edition). Its unusual style sets it apart – disliked (fair enough!) by those who prefer straightforward prose and a clear linear, account, but relished by those who warm to more literary, poetic and sonic expression influenced by such writers as James Joyce, William Faulkner, Gerald Manley Hopkins, W. B. Yeats, and, extensively, Homer.

This second edition, revised, corrected and somewhat enlarged from the 2015 version, includes an extended account by the author of its unusual genesis.

Readers say

” A novel about self discovery, but written in a way you are immersed “

Amazon reviewer

” The Black Inked Pearl: A journey of the Soul by Ruth Finnegan is brilliant! “

Amazon Reviewer

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Ruth Finnegan

About the Author

A Hullo and thank you for taking an interest in me and my works, you are so welcome.You can see some information about me below ( plus a download Inguarantee you’ll like);and more, including about my life beyond books – like you I’m a person as well a writer and reader you know! – at www, feel free to email me at with any, um, extreme laudatory comments (well, one can always hope!), questions, and (always important for writers) criticisms and ideas for improvements: I can always say if I disagree …In the meantime and until we (e)meet again, keep well, keep safeRuth, in code-breakers’ Bletchley, England, May 2020MULTI-AWARD WINNING AUTHOR, fiction and nonfiction Finalist 50 Great Witers you should be reading (AuthorsShow) 2017 RIVERS MEMORIAL MEDAL, Royal Anthropological Institute 2016recent awards and commendations (many others earlier): BLACK INKED PEARL (novel) Literary Titan SILVER AWARD 2017 PEARL OF THE SEAS (novel) Hungry Monster SILVER AWARD 2016 KIRKUS one of best 25 Reviews of 2017 Book excellence WINNER (friendship) ENTRANCEMENT (ed) Readers Favorite FINALIST (friendship) BLACK INK PEARL (screenplay) Capital fund Screen Contest GENRE WINNER am an Emeritus Professor, The Open University, OBE, Fellow of the British Academy and Hon. Fellow Somerville College Oxford, among other things I am the author of MULTIPLE AWARD-Of my Black Inked Pearl “BEST BOOK I HAVE EVER READ” (unsolicited amazon review) Of my ‘Pearl of the Seas’ – “EVERYONE SHOULD READ THIS ” Rowan Williams, Archbishop of Canterbury.I was born (1933) and reared in Ulster and Donegal in a family committed to reconciling the deep divides in Ulster and in the world, went to a Quaker school in York, followed by a first-class Oxford degree in classics/philosophy. Then it was African fieldwork, an Oxford doctorate in literary anthropology, university teaching in Africa, then many years ( with a short period in Fiji), with the pioneering Open University (UK) where I am now, most happily, an honorary research professor. I live in Bletchley in south-central England with my husband of 50 years and two dogs (alas not so long-lived) and have three wonderful daughters and five grandchildren, one in New Zealand. And I still love writing.I have published well over twenty (lost count) academic books with leading publishers (university presses et al.), primarily in literary and linguistic anthropology, music ethnography, and cultural history, and have a continuing interest in modes of communication (multi-sensory) and their practical role in the human worlds of the past, present and future.My most recent publications are second editions of ‘Communicating’ (2014) and of the now widely-available ‘Oral literature in Africa’ (2012) and the new ‘Where is language?’ (2015); other monographs (on ‘the shared mind’, the heritage of Africa, and taxi drivers’ life stories) are in preparation.My contribution to anthropology over the last five years has been recognised by the award of the 2016 Rivers Memorial Medal by the Royal Anthropological Institute of Great Britain and Ireland, a great honour.The most surprising (to me) publication, because rooted in dreams, is my Homeric and African shaped epic romance, ‘Black Inked Pearl’, together with many five-star reviews ; also an Honorable Mention (romance’) in the New York 2016 Book Fair, and Finalist (visionary fiction) in the National Indie Excellence awards. described in a amazon review as “A WOMAN’S ODYSSEY’ and, in another, as simply, ‘WOW!’.I am currently preparing an audio version of the novel and have just published a much-praised version for 10-12 year old readers ( ‘Pearl of the Seas’ – with rave reviews).See the video trailers by the brilliant Castelane at New blogs with book news and on fighting writers’ block on www.ruthfinnegan.comFacebook Page: Page: indie publihser’s page: Trailers:

The Black Inked Pearl

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