Five Days on Ballyboy Beach

This is my second novel, published by Tirgearr Publishing where you can find links to all major retailers.
This link will take you to your local amazon store


Five Days on Ballyboy Beach by David J O'Brien - 500

A startling revelation – the long-time friend you never viewed romantically is actually the person with whom you want to spend the rest of your life.

But what do you do about it?

For Derek, a laid-back graduate camping with college friends on Ireland’s west coast in the summer of 1996, the answer is… absolutely nothing.

Never the proactive one of the group – he’s more than happy to watch his friends surf, canoe and scuba-dive from the shore – Derek adopts a wait and see attitude. Acting on his emotional discovery is further hindered by the fact he’s currently seeing someone else – and she’s coming to join him for the weekend.

As their five days on the beach pass, and there are more revelations, Derek soon realises that to get what he desires, he’ll have to take it. Events conspire to push him to the forefront of the group, and, as unexpected sorrow begins to surround him and his friends, Derek grasps his chance at happiness. After all, isn’t life too short to just wait and see?

As before, 10% of the author’s royalties will be donated to WWF, the World Wildlife Fund…


You can get your copy at

and read an excerpt from the opening chapter.  Here’s one from further along….Enjoy!


The sky was clear, the moon waning but still outdoing the stars. We strolled along the main street, but instead of turning right after the café, I walked across the road to the bridge, just to have a look down, to see if I could see any rats scampering away from my silhouette. I know rats aren’t the prettiest or even most interesting species of mammal in the countryside, but they are a part of our wildlife. I admit that in some places where they are the only mammals, such as along the stream near my house, I have often stopped, when walking the dogs or cycling to school, to watch them going about their business.

Anyway, I didn’t see any rats. No doubt they had already scarpered because of what I did see there in the river, ten yards upstream from the bridge swimming through the moonlit water. An otter.

I had only ever seen one dead before, on the side of a road, so I was elated at the sight. It disappeared beneath the surface and reappeared a little closer to the bridge.

I held up my hand, beckoning the others over, afraid to make a sound and hoping my appearance or hand-waving would not frighten the otter away—at least not until the others had got a glimpse of it. I wanted them to see it, both because to my knowledge only John had seen one before himself, and because if they didn’t, they might be sceptical that I saw it at all. They’d tell me it was only a mink or a drowned cat floating down to the sea. They liked to scoff – well, we all did, but they especially liked to pour cold water on something like this because I was a hunter. They always took the piss, telling me I thought I was a Navajo scout or a Kalahari bushman, with my amazing animal-spotting abilities.

It disappeared again, however, as the others began to walk over—terribly slowly, asking in loud voices what was so interesting that it required them to walk five yards out of their way home. I whispered to them that there was an otter below us. Their replies were a mixture of scepticism and interest, but I ignored them, staring at the rippling water, waiting for the otter to resurface. Ten seconds passed with no sign, so I followed John, who had already decided to check the other side of the bridge. Sure enough, I followed his outstretched arm and saw the animal’s sleek form sliding through the shallow water. The others came over, and everyone watched as the otter slowly made its way downstream. It swam through the estuarine water towards the harbour, where it could vie with the cats, dogs and foxes for a share of what the gulls hadn’t already eaten of the trawler waste on the piers, or hunt the mackerel and pollock that would have moved in to snatch at what had fallen back into the water.

Eventually, the animal disappeared from view for good, and we turned back towards the beach. We passed people queuing for chips outside Bríd’s and after a while the streetlights and then the houses ended and we were in the darkness of the countryside.

Click Here for a link to some reviews…

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