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It's All in the Head


In September 2013, on the Late Late Showin front of an audience of more than half a million, Majella O'Donnell had her hair shaved off and raised a phenomenal 600,000 euros for the Irish Cancer Society. It was a public declaration from a private woman, a statement of enormous courage in her fight against breast cancer.

In this searingly moving and empowering memoir, Majella takes the reader on a journey through her life to that point. It begins with her childhood in the 1960s, growing up in a small town in Ireland, her early love of music and dreams of a future full of hope and excitement, only to be dashed by a broken marriage and an uphill battle with depression.

Her confidence and self-esteem at a low ebb, Majella decided to take charge of her own life and make a fresh start. Then destiny lent a hand when she met Daniel O'Donnell, and their marriage in 2002 brought her immense happiness and fulfilment. It was a decade or so later that tragedy struck, with the diagnosis of breast cancer.

This is the compelling story of a woman made extraordinary by the courage with which she faced her greatest challenge. A woman who has learned about life the hard way, but who, with the love and support of her family and her husband Daniel, and the public by her side, has come through with a force of character and a deep-seated determination that will inspire us all.

Majella O'Donnell is a native of Thurles, County Tipperary, where she was born in 1960. After her first marriage failed, she met Daniel O'Donnell in Tenerife in 1999 and the couple were married in 2002. She has joined her husband on stage on numerous occasions, performing duets with the singer to great acclaim. She has two children, now in their twenties, from her previous marriage. Follow Majella on Twitter @majodonnell, and visit Daniel O'Donnell's website to which Majella often contributes.

  • Publisher: Simon & Schuster UK (October 9, 2014)
  • Length: 288 pages
  • ISBN13: 9781471138966

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