Although I am way past reading young adult fiction (agewise, that is), I do love it. I devoured ‘The Hunger Games’ by Suzanne Collins and ‘The Divergent Trilogy’ by Veronica Roth. So when a borrower recommended the ‘Tearling Trilogy’ by Erika Johansen, I gave it a try and I was hooked.The ‘Tearling Trilogy’ is a dystopian novel with elements of fairy tales and dark magic. The first book, The Queen of the Tearling, is set in an area called the Tearling somewhere in the middle of a mystical ocean around three hundred years after the 9/11 events in the United States. Time is counted as before and after ‘the Crossing’ when a small group of citizens fled a dictatorial United States to set up their own utopian territory. The main character, Kelsea Glynn, is a feisty young woman who had been hidden away and brought up in secret after her queen mother had mysteriously disappeared and thought to have been murdered.Kelsea has been prepared for her future role from childhood onwards and yet she has been kept in the dark about the kingdom’s dark past and present. When she turns nineteen, she inherits a deeply divided country full of corruption and dark powers that is subjugated by the Red Queen of rivalling kingdom, Mortesme. Kelsea sets out to win the support of her people and to defend the Tearling with the help of the Royal Guard who are sworn to defend the Queen to the death.In the subsequent books, The Invasion of the Tearling and The Fate of the Tearling, as Kelsea fights the Red Queen and her army, she develops a mysterious connection to the pre-Crossing United States and to a woman called Lily Mayhew. Through Lily she learns about the time before the Crossing which might hold the key to her own and the Tearling’s survival. This trilogy is a crossover between adult and older young adult fiction. Judging by the reviews on Goodreads, it seems that this is one of those novels that you either love or hate. I loved it.Access eBooks/eAudiobooks on your phone, tablet or reader. Once you have installed the app, search for Dublin in the ‘Library’ field provided and then sign in using your library membership card number and PIN. Members of other library authorities will need to access BorrowBox using a different link.Submitted by Charlotte from Donaghmede Library.
It's almost a cliche at this point to say that teen fiction isn't just for teens anymore. Young adult fiction is a category of fiction written for readers from 12 to 18 years of age. While the genre is targeted to teenagers, approximately half of YA readers are adults. Summer, like youth, is fleeting. But the books we read when we're young can stay with us for a lifetime. Both these titles come highly recommended for our teen readers by our colleague Eimear from the relief staff panel.Stepsister by Jennifer Donnelly. It’s the moment she’s waited for – Isabelle is about to win the handsome prince. There is only one problem, Isabelle isn’t the beautiful girl who lost the glass slipper and stole the prince’s heart. No, Isabelle’s the ugly stepsister, who decided to cut off her toes in order to fit into Cinderella’s glass slipper…. which by the way is now filling with blood.When the Prince discovers the truth, Isabelle is banished, cast out in shame. But after all it’s no more that Isabelle deserves: Isabelle’s a plain girl in a world that values beauty, a feisty gir, in a kingdom that expects women to be seen but not heard. Isabelle has tried to fit in, to be just like Cinderella, but she’s not.Instead, Isabelle cuts off her toes in order to fit into a world that doesn’t accept a girl like her. A world that has made her jealous, empty and mean spirited. The is what she has been told and that is what Isabelle believes, until she gets a chance to change her destiny and prove to the world that it will take much more than heartache to break a girl. Evoking a darker, earlier version of the Cinderella story, bestselling author Jennifer Donnelly brings us a tale of empowerment, that challenges gender roles and reminds us that we all have a say in our destiny.The Red Scrolls of Magic (a Shadowhunter’s novel) New York Times bestselling author Cassandra Clare and award-winner Wesley Chu team up to bring you the first installment in this new series. It follows High Warlock Magnus Bane and Alec Lightwood as they tour the world together after the Mortal War.Magnus Bane wants a holiday — more like a lavish trip around Europe, with his boyfriend Alec Lightwood of course! No sooner have the two settled in Paris when news arrives that a demon-worshipping cult called the Crimson Hand has begun causing chaos all over the world. Now Magnus and Alec must race against time to track down the Crimson hand and its new leader, before it’s too late!Watch our how-to video on Borrowbox.Access eBooks/eAudiobooks on your phone, tablet or reader. Once you have installed the app, search for Dublin in the ‘Library’ field provided and then sign in using your library membership card number and PIN.Members of other library authorities will need to access BorrowBox using a different link.
Fantasy Fiction - magic, mythical and the supernatural
The difference between the fantasy and science fiction genres hasn’t always been an issue. However, there are a few key differences in the genres that can help us to separate one type of book from the other in the ‘science fiction vs fantasy’ debate.Fantasy involves things that do not exist in real life. On the other hand, science fiction is almost related to real things, and based on technology and science. Science fiction deals with scenarios and technology that are possible or may be possible based on science. Some science fiction such as far-future space opera or time travel stories may seem implausible, but they are still not beyond the realm of scientific theory. On the other hand, fantasy general deals with supernatural and magical occurrences that have no basis in science.Isaac Asimov, once asked to explain the difference between science fiction and fantasy, replied that science fiction, given its grounding in science, is possible; fantasy, which has no grounding in reality, is not.Fantasy is an older genre of literature than science fiction; in fact, fantasy is arguably the oldest genre. If we look back at the earliest surviving stories from human civilisation such as the Sumerian Epic of Gilgamesh or ancient myths, we find stories of gods, monsters and magic. Science fiction is a relatively recent genre of the last century.Both science fiction and fantasy require rules. Just because fantasy is not based on scientific facts or speculation doesn’t mean that anything can go in fantasy. Certain laws must govern a fantasy world as well; the difference is that in fantasy, the author makes up the rules.Surprisingly, science fiction and fantasy cannot always be distinguished by settings or other elements. Many would argue that Anne McCaffrey’s Pern series is science fiction despite the existence of dragons while others say the Star Wars films are clearly fantasy despite the space setting. A quick reference list to help you easily find all of McCaffrey’s books: the Dragonriders of Pern series, Acorna series, Catteni series, Brainships, The Talents series, The Tower and Hive sequence, Petabee Universe series.There’s no shortage of excellent fantasy books these days. That’s a good problem to have as far as these things go, but sifting through mountains of books can be daunting. That's where Dublin City Libraries come in.In Nevernight, Mia Corvere is only ten years old when she is given her first lesson in death.Destined to destroy empires, the child raised in shadows made a promise on the day she lost everything: to avenge herself on those that shattered her world. Before she seeks vengeance, she must seek training among the infamous assassins of the Red Church of Itreya.Return to a world of magic and adventure from best selling author Raymond E. Feist. This bundle includes the complete Serpentwar Saga. The bundle includes: Shadow of a Dark Queen (1), Rise of a Merchant Prince (2), Rage of a Demon King (3), and Shards of a Broken Crown (4).Return to the world of Midkemia. Ancient powers are readying themselves for a devastating confrontation, and a dark queen has raised a standard and is gathering armies of unmatched might.The Hobbit is the unforgettable story of Bilbo, a peace-loving hobbit, who embarks on a strange and magical adventure. Bilbo Baggins enjoys a quiet and contented life, with no desire to travel far from the comforts of home; then one day the wizard Gandalf and a band of dwarves arrive unexpectedly and enlist his services – as a burglar – on a dangerous expedition to raid the treasure-hoard of Smaug the dragon. Bilbo’s life is never to be the same again. Since its publication in 1937, J. R.R. Tolkien’s classic tale has remained in print delighting each new generation of readers all over the world.Helene Wecker's debut novel is an eerie tale of two magical creatures set loose in 19th century New York. A golem – a mythical creature of Jewish lore – awakens during a sea voyage, and is taught to pass as human among the diverse groups of people living in the city. At the same time, a tinsmith in New York accidentally frees a genie from a flask after centuries of imprisonment, but he's trapped in human form seeking a way to return to his full power. The pair meet and become friends, and must team up to counter an evil sorcerer who wants to enslave them both.Philip Pullman has returned with a follow-up to the His Dark Materials trilogy. The Book of Dust is a second trilogy set in the world of Lyra Belacqua and her inner self in animal form, Pantalaimon. At the point of writing two of the trilogy have been released: La Belle Sauvage (2018) and The Secret Commonwealth (2019). The first of these is set before the tumultuous events of His Dark Materials. But the second fast forwards to a decade after their conclusion. There's espionage, spies and frantic attempts to stop the world from vanishing into darkness.Marlon James, who won the Booker prize for A Brief History of Seven Killings, is not traditionally a fantasy writer. Black Leopard, Red Wolf focuses on the political tensions between warring states, in a world populated by a host of magical creatures: cannibals, vampires, witches, ghosts and sorcerers. "...A dangerous, hallucinatory, ancient Africa, which becomes a fantasy world as well realized as anything Tolkien made..." - Neil Gaiman.Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell is set in 19th-century England around the time of the Napoleonic Wars. The book’s premise is that magic has returned: two men, Gilbert Norrell and Jonathan Strange, wield it. Written in a comedy of manners, Jane Austen style, it took its author British writer Susanna Clarke ten years to write.Ursula Le Guin is one of the titans of fantasy and sci-fi – her books explore political and feminist themes in fantastical settings. The Left Hand of Darkness focuses on an androgynous civilisation, and The Dispossessed is set in anarchist Utopia. The Earthsea series is more traditional but still brilliant – we follow Ged, a teenager at magic school, who causes a disaster dabbling in the dark arts. Readers have pointed to the similarities between Ged’s school and Hogwarts.Harry Dresden is a professional wizard in a version of modern-day Chicago where fantastical creatures lurk just underneath the surface. He makes his living as a private detective, solving cases that bridge the worlds of the real and the uncanny. In Butcher's Storm Front, the first book in long-running series The Dresden Files, he finds himself duelling with vampires, werewolves, and the mob.The Rivers of London, set in a lovingly described version of present-day London charts the adventures of Detective Constable Peter Grant, one of two wizards in the Metropolitan Police. It grounds its fantastical elements in the scientific method, and the mixture of flying spells and police jargon gives the ongoing series a unique and enjoyable tone. The first book, Rivers of London, describes an encounter with a malevolent spirit that draws Grant into the capital's magical underworld.
2017 Citywide Reading Campaign for Children Book Selected!
We are delighted to announce that 'Knights of the Borrowed Dark' by Dave Rudden, published by Puffin Books, is the chosen book for the 2017 Citywide Reading Campaign for Children.This reading initiative is organised by Dublin City Council’s Public Library Service as part of its UNESCO City of Literature programme with the aim of encouraging children to read for pleasure.There will be author visits to Dublin City Public libraries as well as city-centre based events to promote the campaign from January to March 2017. Full details about the campaign and events will be available in early January. Copies of KNIGHTS OF THE BORROWED DARK will be available in all Dublin City branch libraries."I am honoured and delighted that 'Knights of the Borrowed Dark' is Dublin UNESCO City of Literature’s Citywide Read. This is the city that taught me how to write, and I owe so much to its vibrant, friendly and supportive literary community. There's a wild, swashbuckling charm to Dublin that very much inspired the strange and magical world of the Knights (though thankfully with less clockwork women and waistcoated misery-drinkers) and I can't wait to share it with Dublin's young readers and help them find stories of their own." says Dave Rudden.This is the sixth year of the reading initiative. In previous years books chosen for the Citywide Reading Campaign included Alan Early’s Arthur Quinn and the World Serpent, The Nightmare Club series featuring Annie Graves , The Powers by Kevin Stevens, Danger is Everywhere by David O’Doherty, and last year’s book was The Book of Learning by E.R. Murray.Reviews:Knights of the Borrowed Dark by Dave Rudden review – a magical debut (Guardian, 7 May 2016)Book Review – Knights Of The Borrowed Dark by Dave Rudden (Rick O'Shea, RTÉ 2fm and RTÉ Radio 1 Broadcaster)Reader Reviews on Goodreads.See also Puffin Books website.
Question: When might a Harry Potter not be a Harry Potter? Stumped? Answer: When it is not written by J.K. Rowling!So what then is this we hear of a new Harry Potter book to be launched on the 31st July? Indeed it's true, the eight book in the series, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child - Parts I & II, is to be officially launched in Livraria Lello (Lello Bookstore) in Porto in Portugal. Now it might be a tad unfair to say it is not a J.K. Rowling book as, though not penned by her, it is based on an original story by her together with a number of others. And it is officially the eight book on the Harry Potter series. So there, record clarified.The significance of the date 31st July? Jt is J.K. Rowling's and Harry's joint birthday!The launch on the 31st July in Porto is that of the official script book of the play of the same name, which premieres in London’s West End at the Palace Theatre on the 30th July. The play was written by Jack Thorne and is based on an original story by J.K. Rowling, John Tiffany and Jack Thorne himself.Harry Potter and the Cursed Child - Parts I & II follows the life of the now more mature and overworked Potter and his youngest son Albus Severus 19 years after what was the final book in the original series, 'Deathly Hallows'.Did you know? 2017 marks the 20th anniversary of the UK publication of the very first book in the series, Harry Potter And The Philosopher's Stone.About the Book:It was always difficult being Harry Potter and it isn't much easier now that he is an overworked employee of the Ministry of Magic, a husband, and father of three school-age children. While Harry grapples with a past that refuses to stay where it belongs, his youngest son Albus must struggle with the weight of a family legacy he never wanted. As past and present fuse ominously, both father and son learn the uncomfortable truth: sometimes, darkness comes from unexpected places. (from publisher Little, Brown)This Special Rehearsal Edition will be available until early 2017, after which a Definitive Edition of the script will be available (publisher's note)Why Livraria Lello?This bookshop (see right, click to view larger image) is rumoured to be the inspiration for Rowling's own Flourish and Blotts bookstore in the Harry Potter series and indeed for much of her writings in the series. And it is easy to see why, it is truly a thing of beauty this, one of the oldest bookshops in Portugal. The bookshop opened to the public in 1906 and has a neo-gothic facade, a beautifully curvaceous art nouveau staircase and stained-glass skylight. The travel guide Lonely Planet named Livraria Lello the "Third Best Bookstore in the World!". J.K. Rowling frequented the bookshop and the cafe on the upper floor while she lived in Porto in the early 1990s, teaching English as a foreign language during her stay there.See this 360 degree view of the bookshop.Below: Flourish and Blotts Bookshop (click to view larger image)Check the library catalogue for Harry Potter and the Cursed Child - Parts I & II.See also the previous blog post POTTER MANIA!!!!! listing the previous seven books in the series.
The series of interviews I have been doing with authors was actually inspired by a conversation between Ruth and I about a year ago. Unfortunately her previous books proved impossible to source with our suppliers, and Treachery of Beautiful Things was difficult, but we persevered and it is in stock.Ruth and I know each other online and through several conventions, we're both librarians, fantasy lovers and lovers of old books, only she gets to work with them in her job.1. So what kind of fiction do you write?All kinds of fantasy, for people of all ages. 2. Why?I love magic in my stories. I love a sense of the fantastic, the numinous, the wonder whether it’s in a new world or something to be found in everyday life. 3. How long have you been writing for?As long as I can remember. 4. What is your library history like?I'm from a family of readers, and we always belonged to our local library. I still do and now have the great pleasure of letting the library keep my children in reading materials because trying to do so myself would bankrupt me! Working in libraries, and having worked in public libraries in the past, gives a very real sense of how important a place a library is. 5. Does it give you a special thrill to see your books in your local library?Definitely. 6. Do you visit your local library often?Every week, more or less. I may have mentioned my kids are voracious readers. They’d go every day if they could. 7. Do you use the interlibrary loan system in your library service (well I might as well get a minor plug in!)Yes. I have books on reserve right now! ;) It’s a fantastic facility, especially when it comes to some of the more tricky to get research books. 8. Have you ever reserved your own book just to prove it's in stock?No, but you're giving me ideas now... ;) 9. Did you have a favourite author as a kid?Susan Cooper, Alan Garner, Enid Blyton, J. R. R. Tolkien (well I started reading him as a kid) 10. Have you read those books again as an adult?Yes. 11. What was it like? Did it stand up to adult reading?The Dark is Rising sequence was as brilliant as I remember. I still don't understand Red Shift but love Garner's language. I recently read his adult sequel to the Alderley Edge trilogy, Boneland, which was phenomenal and I will have to reread several times. Such an incredible book. Tolkien is a lifelong read, and I read Blyton with my kids. 12. List five favourite authors (who aren't you!)Neil Gaiman, Terry Pratchett, Sarah Rees Brennan, Susan Cooper, Stephen King 13. Have you read any books about Ireland that made you laugh/cry/breathe smoke?Many. It's one of the reasons I'm quite nervous about writing stories based in other cultures. I've seen how wrong it can go. Quite often it’s something as little as the way a character speaks. I have a horror of that “Oirish” accent. Hopefully as I am now writing about Ireland I’m getting it right. A Crack in Everything is a YA urban fantasy set in Dublin, which will be released next year from O’Brien Press. I drew in a lot of my own local knowledge writing it but then discovered there were many things I needed to follow up on and double check. I’m writing book 2 at the moment and rooting out more Dublin folklore, settings and stories to use. 14. Do you read any genres outside what you write? Deliberately?The story is the most important thing to me so yes. I'm a big fan of thrillers and historicals. It's not so much deliberate as that I read what I enjoy so that doesn't have to limit me to one genre. It's refreshing and often gives me ideas. One story I'm working on at the moment was inspired by a book on England's medieval queens. 15. Do you go to any Irish Conventions?Yes, Octocon and Pcon annually. I've also been to Wexworlds and TitanCon. I'll go wherever I'm invited basically! 16. Do you go to any non-Irish Conventions? Any favourites or recommendations?I go to the Romantic Novelists Association annual conference. Not a convention as such but one of the most valuable weekends away for me as a writer. I’m heading off to London for Worldcon next year, with a quick turnaround to be back here for Eurocon in Dublin (called Shamrockon) the following weekend. Very excited about that, and the possibility of a Worldcon in Dublin in 2019. But basically the same thing goes - if someone invites me I'll go. 17. Do you have any hobbies outside of writing?I knit a little (badly), make jewellery occasionally, draw (not in a while). It's all quite intermittent. I love to cook, which I have to do on a daily basis. The problem is I never know when a story is going to hook me and pull me away from a hobby. And there have been a few charred dinners in our house. I also like walking and exploring forests and hills. I’m a member of the Native Woodland Trust but never seem to make the gatherings. I’m wonderful at planning research trips which drag my family up hills, into forests and in search of prehistoric tombs and the like. We took a trip to England while I was editing The Treachery of Beautiful Things so I could trace the path of one character from Dragon Hill to the Uffington White Horse and on to Wayland’s Smithy along the Ridgeway, mainly so I could find out if there was a gate across the path to Wayland’s Smithy. (There was!) 18. Have you visited Libraries in any other country?Oh yes, I've been very lucky with my current job in that there is an international association and we meet every 18 months. There is usually a visit to a few libraries involved. So far I've been lucky enough to see the Carmelite library at Krakow, the National Libraries in Malta and Madrid, El Escorial, the Vatican library and most recently the Theological and Philosophical Halls at the library in Strahov Monastery in Prague. Beautiful places. 19. Which one impressed you the most?Probably the Theological hall in Strahov for looks alone. Malta and El Escorial were wonderful too.
Vampires - From Dracula to Twilight and everything in between
Post by Fabienne Sauberlich.Are the Acheronian Dracula and the sparkling chick magnet Edward Cullen one and the same? Definitely not. But they are both vampires. Maybe there is not "That Vampire" anymore but a few very different types of vampires? And that is exactly how it is; they kind of spread over the whole media market placing themselves in different genres with different attributes. So if you think you know vampires, vampires fiction and vampires movies you might have missed some. What vampires do you like? The creature of human nightmares, the pitiless hunter of the night longing for your blood? You can find them with famous horror authors like Stephen King in Salem’s Lot, hunted by brave people like Van Helsing, Buffy and so on, or in classics like Dracula and Nosferatu.Or is it the more complex vampire you are looking for? The one struggling with his conflict between the need for blood and his reluctance to kill or hurt others. Fighting his own demons while losing everyone he loves, to be damned to an eternal life of loneliness while trying to find his way, like Louis in Anne Rice's Interview with the Vampire, or like Darran Shan, and other characters of fantasy authors.If a vampire has human-like feelings as Louis and most modern vampires have, he is also able to love. But how can you be with the one you love when losing control might result in killing him/her? And if you did fall in love with a stranger, could you still love him if you knew his secret? Would you follow him into his world? Love, danger, secrets and dark passion. That is what you find in the stories of Lynsay Sands, Kerrelyn Sparks and many more.So that is what they are. Vampires. Murderers and gentleman. Passionate and cool as ice. And everything in between.------------------------About our Guest BloggerFabienne Sauberlich is a student of Library and Information Science in Germany with special interests in Psychology, Horror, Fantasy and Mystery Media.
The news just out is that Eoin Colfer's Artemis Fowl series of children's science fantasy books is destined for the big screen after Hollywood film producer Harvey Weinstein announced that he is teaming up with Walt Disney Studios for a big screen take on the series! The venture will mark the renewal of the partnership between Weinstein and Disney after a bitter falling out in 2005, and is great news for Eoin Colfer and great news for all the young fans of the wonderful Artemis series. As Weinstein is quoted as saying, "this is a special project for me because my children absolutely love this book".The film will cover the first two books in the series, and will be adapted by Michael Goldenberg, the screenwriter of Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix.Eoin is a great friend of libraries and his books are forever popular with our younger readers. In total there are eight books in the series, the most recent, 'Artemis Fowl, The Last Guardian' scooping the Specsavers Children's Book of the Year Award in the senior section at the Bord Gáis Energy Irish Book Awards in November 2012. The series stars 12-year-old criminal mastermind Artemis Fowl II, while the author has described the series as "Die Hard" with fairies. The complete list of titles in the Artemis Fowl series (in order) is as follows:Artemis Fowl Artemis Fowl: The Arctic Incident Artemis Fowl: The Eternity Code Artemis Fowl: The Opal Deception Artemis Fowl: The Lost Colony Artemis Fowl: The Time Paradox Artemis Fowl: The Atlantis Complex Artemis Fowl: The Last GuardianBut when will we see it on the big screen? According to the New York Times, the project is in the "early stages", but that Goldenberg is working on the screenplay. So fingers crossed!
As I said in the interview with Peadar Ó Guilín I came across a few authors over the two days of Octocon and asked them to be interviewed. This is the second one, Celine Kiernan, an author whose books I have very much enjoyed over the years.Celine was born and raised in Dublin and worked for a while in the Sullivan Bluth studio and I love meeting her at Octocon, she is a passionate speaker when she's on panels and I enjoyed the ones I managed to get with her on them.The Links in the book names or author names will bring you to Dublin City Public Library's Catalogue 1. So what kind of fiction do you write?Fantasy (possibly magic realism?? Not sure actually how to class it) It is mostly marketed as cross-over adult/YA 2. Why?It's always liberating to sidestep reality a little in writing. It makes the exploration of deeper themes less heavy handed. I do like to examine the long term consequences of real life actions & to explore quite sensitive themes (like societal reform for example (Moorehawke), or the changes history makes on how we see ourselves and our own actions (Into the Grey) or seeking self-worth in a world that deems you/your kind worthless (Resonance) Telling these stories via fantasy elements is a great way of exploring sweeping concepts while still having a little fun. 3. How long have you been writing for?Quite literally since I could write the words down. I wrote my first completed (terrible) novel at 11 years old. 4. Does it give you a special thrill to see your books in your local library? Gives me a thrill to see my books anywhere other than my own head. 5. Do you visit your local library often?At least twice a month. 6. Have you ever lurked near your books in a library or bookshop if someone seems to be interested? God, no. 7. Do you do readings in libraries, how do you find them?Yes I do. Always by invitation only and I'm very grateful to the coordinated efforts of the various Irish libraries, county councils and schools that continue to make such visits possible. I've found them to be a very positive experience all round. They generate a lot of interesting discussion with the kids involved (it's always kids) and sometimes quite long-running e-mail or letter based communication afterwards. 8. Do you use the interlibrary loan system in your library service (well I might as well get a minor plug in!)very very often, as I tend to go into the library already knowing what it is I'd like to read. 9. Have you ever reserved your own book just to prove it's in stock?Good lord! LOL. No. 10. Did you have a favourite author as a kid? I had favorite books more that favorite authors, but I did return again and again to Stephen King & Ray Bradbury when in my teens. (though I had the usual on going love affair with Enid Blyton and the Hardy Boys when a very young child) Among my favorite young teen books were The Weirdstone of Brisingamen (Alan Garner), Ned Kelly and the City of the Bees (Thomas Keneally), Little Grey Men & it's sequel Little Grey Men Go Down the Bright Stream (BB), Alice Through the Looking Glass (Lewis Carroll) & Something Wicked This Way comes (Ray Bradbury) 11. Have you read those books again as an adult?I do try to avoid going back as I will never be that child again and I don't want to hurt the memories with my elderly cynicism. But I read Something Wicked recently as part of a literary event, I also dip into Alice now and again as I think it's timeless. 12. What was it like? Did it stand up to adult reading?Something Wicked was a lovely re-read, I enjoyed it tremendously (though I did - on rereading - find it terribly over written. It didn't spoil my enjoyment at all) I recently ( at an acquaintance's urging) tried Weirdstone again and sadly found I had out grown it. 13. List five favourite authors (who aren't you!)Again, I tend to like books rather than authors, but folks whose work I return to again and again as an adult reader are: Sebastian Barry, John Connolly, Colum McCann, Louis de Bernieres & Gabriel Garcia Márquez. Yes - all men. What can I tell you about that fact?? It is what it is. 14. Have you read any books about Ireland that made you laugh/cry/breathe smoke?Not about Ireland per se, no. 15. Do you have an alias? Why?I'm called Tinycoward on my Art site because that's what I am (IE I'm actually very shy and find meeting new people difficult) & Gary Clarke over at AbsoluteWrite (after a beloved uncle who dies too early and whose name I had intended to use as a pen-name) 16. Do you read any genres outside what you write? Deliberately?Very much so.I think it would be more of a deliberate decision to stick within my genre to be honest. I read what fascinates me, and I'm fascinated by many many different things - but most especially society, history and why human beings do what they do. 17. Do you go to any Irish Conventions?Last year (2011) was my first convention (Octocon) and I only attended after years of being cajolled and bullied into it (like I said - shyyyyy) It was a good experience, so I came back again this year. Next year I've been invited to Pcon which I'm already knotted up in anxiety over : ) 18. Do you go to any non-Irish Conventions? Any favourites or recommendations?Nope. 19. Do you have any hobbies outside of writing? I draw. I garden. 20. Have you visited Libraries in any other country? I lived in Phoenix, Arizona for a while and attended a library there. 20. Which one impressed you the most?There was only one. It was very good. 22. Is there anything that you would like to see Irish Libraries do? It would be good if they had the freedom to raise money outside of state funding (perhaps by the addition of a small bookshop to each library maybe?) but overall I think the library service is an excellent one in this country. 23. Is there anything you would like to see Dublin City Public Libraries do?I'm not too familiar with Dublin City Libraries. Sorry. [Sadly - Deigh]
So I have to ask, was anyone else as glued to the Game of Thrones series as I was? Oh man, it turned me from being fond of the series to completely caught up by it. Eagerly awaiting the next episode to see what happened next. I also managed to get my husband completely hooked on it and eagerly awaiting the next episode.George R R Martin is an engaging man, I knit my way through a talk he did at Octocon where he was the guest of honour and I was very glad that the socks I was knitting weren't that complicated! We just got some new copies of the first book, Game of Thrones in, and if you're trying not to spoiler yourself for the rest of the series there's a Graphic Novel that involves some peripheral characters called The Hedge Knight and in the books Legends and Legends II where this story starts. Westeros is a fan site with a lot of information and discussion and George R R Martin has his own website and blogSo now I'm looking forward to playing catch-up with the series, reading the books one by one. The books are in order:A Game of ThronesA Clash of Kings (which was split up in some editions)A Storm of Swords (again split up in some editions; Part 1 is Steel & Snow; part 2 is Blood and Cold)A Feast for CrowsA Dance with Dragons (which is just new in)We do have some more copies on order of the earlier books as the series has given a boost to readership of the books!If you're still looking to delay reading the next book in the series but want similar writers Who Else Writes like...? recommends R Scott Bakker; Juliet E McKenna; Maggie Furey; Stan Nicholls; James Barclay; Greg Keyes; Patrick Rothfuss; C J Cherryh; Scott Lynch and Harry Turtledove. (author links bring you to an example of the author's work in our catalogue)Other recommendations I have seen include:Tad William's The Dragonbone ChairGuy Gavriel Kay's Summer TreeKate Elliott's Spirit GateLois McMaster Bujold's Curse of ChalionRaymond E Feist & Janny Wurts' Daughter of the EmpireTerry Brooks Shannara SeriesGlenda Larke's Last StormlordIs there a Fantasy Series you'd like to see on the big screen? Or another fantasy series you recommend for fans of George R R Martin?Yes I am ignoring the Tolkien shaped elephant in the room, I hope to talk about him a little more some other time.And always remember, if you're looking for a book and we don't have it, ask, you never know what we might be able to do for you! All the books linked to in this post were available at the time of the post.