Blind genius comes alive to new generation of readers
In her heyday, Frances Browne would have known fame comparable to JK Rowling today, as copies of her latest fairytales and children’s stories flew from the bookshelves or helped boost the circulation of newspapers and other publications.
In the mid 1800s, the Stranorlar woman wrote many poems, novels, children’s books and numerous articles for newspapers - all achieved despite the blindness which had affected her from infancy.
For several decades she was nearly lost in the annals of literature, but her writing is enjoying a bit of a renaissance, thanks partly to the recent research by Limavady man Raymond Blair who has just published “The Best of Frances Browne - Poems, Stories and Essays by the Blind Genius of Stranorlar”.
Like all true classics, Frances Browne’s material has weathered the years and changing fashions well, and is as readable today as it was when she was prolifically enlightening the lives of so many readers of books, newspapers and magazines.