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Fiction featuring Care Experience

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A Second Life

Dermot Bolger


Following a car crash, for several seconds, Dublin photographer Sean Blake is clinically dead. He experiences the overwhelmingly powerful sensation of being drawn towards a blissful afterworld, to find his progress blocked by the haunting face of a man he only partially recognises. He plummets back to life into a world which, for him, has profoundly changed. The pieces of his life seem not to fit anymore as he struggles, deeply traumatized, to adjust to this gift of a second life. Yet this is not the first time that he has been given a second life. At the age of six weeks he was taken from his mother, when as a young girl in rural Ireland, she was forced to give up her baby for adoption. Beginning the quest for his own identity, and struggling against a wall of official silence and a complex sense of guilt, Sean determines to find his natural mother, while continuing to search for the face that has haunted him since the crash. This leads him on a strange and absorbing journey through his various pasts, into archives, memories, dreams and startling confessions.

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