The Viney Agency


David AmbroseMaurice Leitch is author of The Liberty Lad, Poor Lazarus, Silver's City and many other works. In 1969, he moved to London from his native Northern Ireland to become a producer in the BBC's radio drama department. In 1977 he became Editor of A Book at Bedtime on Radio Four until leaving in 1989 to write full-time.

Rated by Robert McLiam Wilson, as ‘perhaps the finest Irish novelist of his generation’ he was awarded the Guardian Fiction Prize in 1969 for Liberty Lad and won the Whitbread Prize in 1981 for his novel Silver's City. In addition he has written over twenty television and radio plays and is a winner of the Golden Harp Award.

In 1999 Maurice Leitch was awarded an MBE for services to literature.

PRAISE FOR Seeking Mr Hare

Ireland's best living novelist (Eamonn Sweeney)

Perhaps the finest Irish novelist of his generation (Robert McLiam Wilson)

Entertaining ... the narrative is lively and continuously interesting and full of incident ... engaging, inventive, assured in manner, deft in arrangement (Allan Massie Scotsman)

Skilfully interwoven by the veteran novelist from Northern Ireland, who conjures up a series of vivid and dramatic scenes ... impressive (Harry Ritchie Daily Mail)

Deft and verbally inventive (Nick Rennison Sunday Times)

An entertaining, black-hearted, opportunistic Irish rogue (The Times)

Leitch always pushes beyond surfaces on into the other side, into the dark that often turns out to be what we've suspected or feared or denied all along (Irish Times)

A slice of intriguing speculation ... rich characterisation and vivid depictions (Guardian )

An engaging contribution to the picaresque-cum-pursuit genre ... a memorable farrago (TLS )


Maurice Leitch A masterful and highly entertaining novel from the winner of the Guardian Book Prize and the Whitbread Prize.

On the 7th of February 1829 the notorious Irish mass murderer and 'resurrectionist' William Hare (of Burke and Hare infamy) was freed from a Scottish gaol, put on a coach to Carlisle, left on the roadside there and subsequently disappeared from human view as if he had never existed. His fellow conspirator and provider of fresh 'meat' for the Edinburgh surgeons' operating tables had earlier been hanged, but fearing the mob's vengeance, the authorities had freed Hare hoping he would vanish for ever, little knowing that his name along with the nature of his terrible crimes would reverberate and live on even if his subsequent history did not.

Seeking Mr Hare
takes up the story where our pariah flees his past through the Northern English countryside and finally across to Ireland. Joining forces with Hannah, a young mute farm-girl, on the way, the pair travel from one adventure in survival to the next, all the while pursued by Percy Speed, a retired London enquiry agent hired by his noble employer to track down a life-mask of Hare for his private cabinet of curiosities. However when Lord Beckford loses interest in the quest, Speed doggedly carries on, determined to come face to face with his cunning and elusive quarry, no matter what the quest costs and where it leads him.

BIBLIOGRAPHY:Seeking Mr Hare, Profile, 2013; Tell Me About It, Lagan, 2013; A Far Cry, Lagan, 2012;   Dining At The Dunbar, Lagan Press, 2009; Tell Me About It, Lagan Press, 2008; The Eggman’s Apprentice, Secker & Warburg, 2001; The Smoke King, Secker & Warburg, 1998; Gilchrist, Secker & Warburg, 1994; Burning Bridges, Secker & Warburg, 1989; Chinese Whispers,Secker & Warburg, 1987; Silver’s City, Secker & Warburg, 1981; Stamping Ground, Secker & Warburg, 1975; Poor Lazarus,Secker & Warburg, 1969; The Liberty Lad, Secker & Warburg, 1965.