|This biographical article relies on references to primary sources. (October 2010)|
Lia Mills is an Irish writer. She writes novels, short stories and literary non-fiction. She has also worked on several public art commissions and as an arts consultant.
Her first novel, Another Alice (1996), was nominated for the Irish Times Irish Fiction prize. Her second novel, Nothing Simple (2005), was shortlisted for the Irish Novel of the Year at the inaugural Irish Book Awards. Her most recent book, In Your Face (2007), a memoir of her diagnosis of and treatment for oral cancer, was named as a favourite book of 2007 by several commentators.[who?]
Born in Dublin, she has lived in London and America before returning to Ireland in 1990.
In Your Face - Penguin Ireland, 2007
In early 2006, Lia Mills went to the dentist, worried about a painful lump in her cheek. In Your Face is her account of what happened next: a diagnosis of oral cancer, surgery to remove the tumour and reconstruct her jaw; a broken leg that came about as a result of a bone graft and that went undiagnosed for several weeks; radiotherapy and resulting illness; and, finally, recovery. Based on the journals she kept even when she was feeling her worst, In Your Face gives a day-by-day account of what Lia went through.
Nothing Simple - Penguin Ireland, 2005
When Ray left Ireland to follow Dermot to America, she had her doubts about moving; but Dermot convinced her it was where their future lay, and she was too young and too much in love to fight. So they settled in a hot and murky Texan suburb where nothing turned out to be quite what it seemed. Now, ten years and four children later, recession has hit Texas, Dermot's career like their marriage has stalled, and he says that the family has to move back to Dublin. But Ray is not so sure that she can trust her husband's judgment any more. Then, as they get ready to leave, their daughter disappears. In the desperate hours that follow, Ray tries to figure out how she has ended up with a life that's only beginning to make sense now that everything in it is under threat.
Another Alice - Poolbeg Press, 1996
Another Alice is the story of a poisoned childhood, a contamination that threatens to spread through generations. Alice is a photographer, struggling to keep her head above water. She has arranged her life like one of her photographs: careful, ordered, stark. The small figure in the foreground is her daughter, Holly. But under the surface, things are not nearly as smooth as Alice likes to think they are. She is haunted by a dream from her childhood that threatens to rise up and engulf her, destroying both Holly and herself. Ultimately she realises that she must enter the dream and learn to navigate its dangerous waters if there is to be any hope of survival for either of them.