Showing posts from May, 2020


"Filled to the brim with drama and danger. It is true, heartwarming and heart-stopping and very magical." Fallen Star Stories The Wild Magic Trilogy began with Begone The Raggedy Witches ; a story that crackled with atmosphere and enchantment from the very first line and captured this bloggers' heart and imagination. I wanted...really wanted to live in Mups' world and stand by her side throughout the twists and turns of the magical adventure. And through its' pages, I did exactly that as she journeyed through a land that was her legacy and was being destroyed by her grandmother, the Old Queen. Then after the triumph of driving the Old Queen away, came The Little Grey Girl. In that book, with the Old Queen gone, but certainly not dead, the land is living under a Snow Queen-esque curse and discover the echoes of the cruel past through its' ghosts. Hurt and angry, they are determined to lash out in a punishing rage on Mups' family, ensur

Social Distancing and Young Children? A Picture Book To Help

These times of self-isolation and social distancing have been difficult. But can you imagine trying to understand it all if you're a small child? It can be an overwhelming task to try to keep our children safe and happy while also explaining the reasons behind not being able to go to play-parks and visit with friends (especially in the gorgeous weather!), being unable to visit family, grandmas and grandads who play such an important part in a young childs' life. And of course, you don't want to laden them down with fear, anger or anxiety. In Galway, our own local publisher, Tribes Press has just released a picturebook that will help allay concerns and bring a bit of reassurance and understanding into your childs' world in these strange times. COVID MONSTERS' VISIT author: Marguerite Tonery illustrator: Fabrice Matray Tribes Press (27 May 2020) Uh-oh! The Covid Monster is here for a visit that no one wants! With his squishy hands and toes, he’s dripping nasty

FRIENDSHIP, ART AND BEING REAL- Clementine and Rudy by Siobhan Curham

Siobhan Curham has a strong history of writing books for young people that speak to the heart of blossoming creativity, authentic voices and living, finding your tribe and standing strong in a society that wants...sameness. And throughout her books, she does this in a quiet, determined way, revealing the little shadows that seek to dim the light inside and fail. She consistently brings together the most unlikely of people and through her story, cements unbreakable bonds between them. Enter now, Clementine and Rudy... CLEMENTINE AND RUDY author: Siobhan Curham Walker Books (4 June 2020) ISBN: 9781406390230 Two 'ordinary' girls from different worlds, living only a few streets apart... Rudy is a young Street Artist, seeking out late at night even though nerves get the better of her, to reveal her images to an unsuspecting Brighton. Clementine is a poet, responding to the images she finds on Instagram with heartfelt, genuine words that seem to flow out of her of their own


Ten years ago, an extraordinary book was placed in my hands. It was one of the first books I shouted about on this blog and now, with the Walker Books 10th Anniversary edition, I have to shout about it again. It is a book that sticks in my memory and in my heart as one of the most superb YA novels in the last decade and I have recommended it more times that I can count. The Sky Is Everywhere: 10th Anniversary Edition author: Jandy Nelson Walker Books (7 May 2020) ISBN: 9781406390933 When her wonderful, beautiful sister, Bailey, dies suddenly, Lennie suddenly finds herself, not only struggling with her grief, but also taking centre stage in her own life. The loss of her sister,  and finding her emotions torn between her sister's boyfirend (with whom she shares this heartbreaking common ground) and the new boy in town, Joe (the only person she knows who has never had any contact with Bailey) is bad enough.  Running like a fraying thread through her mind and emotions is  the di


It can seem a very strange and challenging time to be presenting a childrens' book awards ceremony, or any kind of ceremony for that matter. Covid_19 restrictions make it impossible for us to gather and celebrate in the traditional way. So we think of something different... Yesterday at high noon (!), the childrens' books people of Ireland gathered in front of their computers, laptops and phones for the 30th annual (and first ever online) presentation of the Childrens Books Ireland Book Awards. Partnering with KPMG (another first), CBI reached out in the joy and excitement that is always present at these events to celebrate the finest additions to an extraordinary canon of literature for children and young people produced by Irish authors, illustrators and publishers. The shortlist of outstanding books (shown above) has now been carefully considered, discussed and perused and, with Rick O'Shea presenting the worthy winners were announced in each of the five categories.


Dear readers, Here's something a little different for you. And, I must add, very exciting. Answering a call to address the lack of YA related platforms and publications for young people in Ireland today, Ruth Ennis, Grace Kelley and Amy O'Sullivan put their brains, enthusiasm and talents together and came up with... Paper Lanterns: The Teen and Young Adult Literary Journal . Creating a space for teenage writers, artists and readers, this is a journal especially for them. It taps into the vast body of talent among Irelands' youth to allow a forum for expression and to "hear what they have to say about loss, love, magic, books, the environment and the universe." This is no mean feat, especially launching such a project in the middle of a global pandemic. But with the challenge accepted, the response is glorious. Within the 50 plus pages of Paper Lanterns , there is some very fine writing indeed. The Creative Writing section is separated into Under 18s and Ove