Séamus McNally


About the author

My Story

Séamus McNally is a native of Louisburgh, and grew to manhood between the hills and seas of the Wild Atlantic Way. The Colony Road runs adjacent to his home place, to the location of the remains of The Colony, established during the Famine.
He had a couple of his plays produced and is a performance poet of his humorous verse. He has a keen interest in local history. When his great grandmother died in 1956, at the grand old age of 108, she was the last survivor of the Gorta Mór (Great Famine).

My Book

By Séamus McNally

The Heart Of The West

A journey of hope after the famine

Ireland lost millions of people to a devastating famine in the late 1840’s. How did a small country rise off its knees, within seventy years, to win a war against the might of the British Empire? This is the question that inspired Séamus McNally to learn more about the real events and lives that shaped this time in history.
From meticulous research and drawing on his insight as a local, the author of The Heart of the West: A Journey of Hope after the Famine brings new life to nearly forgotten Irish stories from a neglected corner of the country.
According to poet, WB Yeats, ‘The history of a nation is not in parliaments and battlefields but in what the people say to each other on fair-days and high days, and in how they farm, and quarrel, and go on pilgrimage’.
This work of fiction, based closely on true events, follows the ordinary lives of diverse families (1850’s to 1950’s), from the local peasants to the privileged occupier, and the ties that bind them.

What People Say About My Book

From famine to triumph, “The Heart of the West: A Journey of Hope after the Famine” by Séamus McNally unveils the resilience and unity of Ireland’s diverse families in this captivating work of fiction.

Muhammad Ikram Malik

IT Specialist

Ordered the book online having heard Séamus talking about it on MidWest radio. Very smooth ordering process and the book arrived a couple of days later. Looking forward to reading it over Christmas.

Cathal McDermott


Embarking on an enchanted journey through time, ‘The Heart of the West’, closely rooted in historical facts, provides an educational and emotionally resonant experience. Seamus McNally skillfully portrays the rich culture, beliefs, and interactions of our forefathers, adding an additional authentic layer to the story. ‘The Heart of the West’ becomes a compelling exploration, not just of historical events but also of the cultural treasures that define a people’s spirit.

Gerard Bourke