Set in Northern Ireland during the Troubles, a shattering novel about a young woman caught between allegiance to community and a dangerous passion.

Amid daily reports of violence, Cushla lives a quiet life with her mother in a small town near Belfast. By day she teaches at a parochial school; at night she fills in at her family’s pub. There she meets Michael Agnew, a barrister who’s made a name for himself defending IRA members. Against her better judgment – Michael is not only Protestant but older, and married – Cushla lets herself get drawn in by him and his sophisticated world, and an affair ignites. Then the father of a student is savagely beaten, setting in motion a chain reaction that will threaten everything, and everyone, Cushla most wants to protect.
 
As tender as it is unflinching, Trespasses is a heart-pounding, heart-rending drama of thwarted love and irreconcilable loyalties, in a place what you come from seems to count more than what you do, or whom you cherish.
Advanced praise for Trespasses:

“A beautiful, devastating novel. It feels real and true, and it loves its characters, utterly authentic people trying to live ordinary lives in desperate times. This book will last.” – Nick Hornby
 
Trespasses touches tenderly and hits hard – a compulsively readable love story which is also a lament for a society agonizingly divided against itself. Every word rings true.” – Emma Donoghue

“Distinguished by a quality rare in fiction at any time: a sense of utter conviction. It is a story told with such compulsive attention to the textures of its world that every page feels like a moral and intellectual event.” The Guardian

“A heartbreaking story of forbidden love.”Sunday Times (UK)
 
“Transcends time and place. . . Trespasses feels so authentic it’s as if nobody wrote it at all; it always existed” Irish Independent

“Kennedy writes with fierce power. . . . her tenderly sharpened prose open to feelings so presently intimate that her sentences take shape like a body beside you. . . . A writer of exceptional empathy, style, and skill.”Irish Times

“A master storyteller. . . . The novel was invented for writing like this.” Sunday Independent