Catherine McCullagh grew up in Tasmania, Australia, with a love of bushwalking, reading and history. She initially trained as a history and languages teacher before embarking on a twenty-year career in the Australian Regular Army as a teacher, linguist and editor of military doctrine and military history. She then left the Army and established herself as a freelance editor, specialising in military history. Fifteen years later, inspired by the extraordinary stories that surrounded her, she embarked on a new career, this time as a writer. She has published three non-fiction works: Willingly into the Fray, a narrative history of Australian Army nursing; War Child, a poignant wartime memoir which she ghost-wrote for Annette Janic; and Unconquered, the remarkable stories of athletes who competed in the Invictus Games in Sydney in 2018.
Catherine’s first historical novel, Dancing with Deception, was published in 2017 and, along with War Child, was highly commended at the ACT Writing and Publishing Awards. Her second historical novel, Secrets and Showgirls, followed in 2021, and was shortlisted in the Society of Women Writers Book of the Year award. Her third novel, Love and Retribution, was published in January 2022. Dancing with Deception was re-released in November 2022 in response to the current trend in World War II historical fiction which shows no sign of abating.
A fourth historical novel, Resistance and Revenge, is due for release in May 2023 and represents an entirely new direction. Unlike Catherine’s earlier works of fiction, this novel belongs to the realm of alternative history and is based on the premise that Britain lost the war, was invaded and endured a brutal two-year occupation.
Catherine McCullagh continues to write and is currently working on a second alternative history novel, also set in occupied Britain.
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