Larch Hill is the only home Blue knows. She arrived there just a few days old, wrapped in a blue blanket. Her one hope is to find her mother or father and have a family of her own. Fostered out several times, Blue finds it difficult to fit in. Is there no one out there who really wants her? No one who can really love her?
Blue must put up with the orphanage, with the distant and strict care of the nuns. She does have her friends, Mary and Jessie and Molly and Lil, but they're not family. They're not enough. In her heart, Blue is desperate to find out who she really is. The closed file in stern Sister Regina's office holds the secret of her identity. And that is forbidden territory ...
Born in Dublin in 1956 and brought up in Goatstown, Marita Conlon-McKenna lives in the Stillorgan area of Dublin.
Marita was always fascinated by the Famine period in Irish history and read everything available on the subject. When she heard a radio report of an unmarked children's grave from the Famine period being found under a hawthorn tree, she decided to write her first book, Under the Hawthorn Tree.
Published in May 1990, the book was an immediate success and become a classic. It has been translated into over a dozen languages, and has been read on RTÉ Radio and is very popular in schools, having been made a supplementary curriculum reader in many schools.
Marita has written more books for children which were also very well received. The Blue Horse reached No. 1 on the Bestseller List and won the BISTO BOOK OF THE YEAR Award. No Goodbye, which tells of the heartbreak of a young family when their mother leaves home, was recommended by Book Trust in their guide for One Parent Families. Safe Harbour is the story of two English children evacuated from London during World War ll to live with their grandfather in Greystones, Co Wicklow and was shortlisted for the BISTO Book of the Year Award. A Girl Called Blue follows the life of an orphan, trying to find who she really is in a cold and strict orphanage. Marita has also explored the world of fantasy with her book In Deep Dark Wood.
Marita has won several awards, including the International Reading Association Award, the Osterreichischer Kinder und Jugendbuchpreis, the Reading Association of Ireland Award and the Bisto Book of the Year Award.