Friday 24 May 2019

Inside Irish author John Boyne’s 'Celebrity Home of the Year'

John Boyne's kitchen area
John Boyne's kitchen area
The judges check out John Boyne's 'ego room', as the author himself called it.
John Boyne's living room
The stairs on the landing that leads to Boyne's light-filled attic library.
Geraldine Gittens

Geraldine Gittens

Irish author John Boyne’s home won Celebrity Home of the Year last night.

Judges Hugh Wallace, Deirdre Whelan and Peter Crowley were enthralled by the author’s light-filled library on the landing in particular, his garden work room, and the unique bookends that adorn the many book shelves throughout his home.

The criteria for the judges in choosing the Celebrity Home of the Year were individuality, functionality and clever design.

While Peter Crowley remarked that he wasn't keen on the chandeliers in Boyne's kitchen, Deirdre Whelan fell in love with the many bookends in all shapes and sizes - from horses to unicycles to skeletal hands - all around his home.

Celebrity Home of the Year judges Peter Crowley, Hugh Wallace and Deirdre Whelan
Celebrity Home of the Year judges Peter Crowley, Hugh Wallace and Deirdre Whelan

While Boyne's walls throughout are speckled with shelves that house odds and ends from around the world, Hugh Wallace remarked that the home still manages to feel uncluttered.

Once the judges entered Boyne's work room outside in the garden, they found a clue as to who their celebrity home owner was - an entire shelved wall full to the brim of international editions of 'A Boy in the Striped Pyjamas'.

John Boyne's living room
John Boyne's living room

“This is the ego room,” Boyne admitted as he introduced his home.

Boyne, whose new children's book about a transgender teen 'My Brother's Name is Jessica' will be published in May, explained how he refurbished his detached Rathfarnham home a number of years ago.

The judges check out John Boyne's 'ego room', as the author himself called it.
The judges check out John Boyne's 'ego room', as the author himself called it.

Because he works from home, he told us, he wanted to make it a place that he loved and a place he enjoyed working in.

In the end, Boyne's home pipped those abodes of artist Robert Ballagh, musician Eleanor McEvoy, and businesswoman Ramona Nicholas to win Celebrity Home of the Year. A €5,000 donation now goes directly to his nominated children’s literacy charity, Fighting Words.

The stairs on the landing that leads to Boyne's light-filled attic library.
The stairs on the landing that leads to Boyne's light-filled attic library.
John Boyne's living area
John Boyne's living area
The hallway entrance of John Boyne's home
The hallway entrance of John Boyne's home

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