Celine Kiernan's Blog, page 2
April 18, 2015
Originally posted on ������ ���� ������ ������:
Look! It���s a post in English!
Mary Robinette Kowal linked to this statistical analysis of Hugo winners past, posted by Aidan Walsh:��http://aidanrwalsh.com/2015/04/16/whose-rocket/
At the end of which, Aidan commented: ���Nationality really surprised me. Unfortunately I expected women to be poorly represented, but I didn���t realise how overwhelmingly American it was. (maybe naivety on my part!)���
And Mary commented: ���Wow. We really need more world in WorldCon.���
And I rolled my eyes.
Yes, there is an American bias in the Hugo awards. There is an American bias at cons in general. In fact��I would argue that��Science Fiction*, as we think of it today, is at its core an��American genre. Other��cultures and other languages contributed to the foundation��of Science Fiction,��and I do not downplay the importance of��creators such as��Jules Verne, Karel����apek or��Stanis��aw Lem. But the current fandom culture represented at cons, especially those cons more inclusive of��film���
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February 24, 2015
To celebrate the imminent release of Resonance in AUS/NZ and Ireland, we’re doing a goodreads giveaway of Resonance and of the entire Moorehawke Trilogy. Just click here and enter :D
February 21, 2015
Hi guys! I’ve finished drawing up the Resonance bookplates for my Australian publishers (so that I can ‘sign’ copies of Resonance without – you know – getting on a plane or burdening fed-ex too much) But I can’t decide what way to frame them for printing out.I know this seems like a trivial thing, but I think the framing makes all the difference to how the final artwork looks.�� Help me out here, have a look at my three options (if you click the pictures you’ll see them in their own little window):
Should I go for an all black border?
Should I go for an all white border?
Or (personally my favourite) A mix of black and white border?
January 9, 2015
I know I’ve been terribly quiet here for a while (though you can still catch me on twitter occasionally) I was actually animating again for a while.�� I thought I’d share a little scene so you can see what I’ve been up to (click the gif to see it full res)
As you can see this is old style animation, fully drawn by hand frame by frame just like when I was a baby-animator. They just don’t make them like this any more and it’s been a real thrill to be pulled out of mothballs to help out.
(The project is City of Roses, a beautiful short by Andrew Kavanagh, which is being made with the support of Frameworks here in Ireland. (see these links if you’d like to keep up with its progress: CITY OF ROSES FACEBOOK�� & CITY OF ROSES TWITTER)
I was thinking I might like to do a few wee animated gifs like this for Resonance when it comes out in April. It’s going to be a busy year though (my butcher’s apprenticeship starts this week, and I need to finish writing & illustrating Begone the Raggedy Witches) so I make no promises!
November 17, 2014
There will be sparkles apparently. The girl, the moth, the shards of ice will all shimmer slightly when you turn them to the light. (and, of course, my illustrations are being used as dinkuses) Oh, I cannot wait to hold this creature in my hands.
Release date for AUS/IRE/UK is April 2015, and she’s already available for preorder from Amazon with the following blurb:
What does it mean to be alive? What is it worth to stay alive?
Ireland, 1890: two ruthless immortals prowl the theatre district in search of food for their ‘Angel’. Ancient, pitiless and caring for none but their own twisted family, they will stop at nothing to maintain their grip on life.
A seamstress, the young man who loves her and a penniless American magician soon find themselves imprisoned in a snow-bound country estate, the latest additions to the family’s warped collection. Here, they are nothing but food, nothing but entertainment, and soon they will be nothing at all.
Many miles from their homes and fighting for survival, Tina, Joe and Harry will come to understand that far more is at stake than their lives
This baby has been a long time in the works, and there are little bits and pieces all over the net. The following three are my favorites. I hope you enjoy them:
Under the Ice, a short section from one of the Vincent POV chapters (note this is an unedited version)
The Risk of Tuppence (originally published in the Irish Independent Christmas Supplement 2009) a short story written from Joe’s POV. Set 6 or so years before the book
Chapter One: The Fading God (note this is an unedited version) The opening of the book and one of the Cornelius POV chapters
October 25, 2014
I’ll be in Limerick next week, as part of the wonderful line up at the Bualadh Bos festival. Come along, ask some questions, get some books signed (see below for details!)
For most of us today a flick of a switch can banish the darkness, and a quick internet search can reveal the science behind ‘supernatural’ phenomena. So why do we still tell ghost stories? Why do readers still hunger for monsters and aliens, when many of us no longer believe in god? Celine Kiernan explores her ongoing love affair with the fantasy genre, and tries to explain what she is looking for in her exploration of the supernatural.
Celine Kiernan is an award-winning author of dark, complex fantasy novels for young adults. Her books, The Moorehawke Trilogy and Into the Grey have between them won: the 2009 RAI Best Book Award; been included in the White Raven Collection; short listed for the 2009 Irish Book Awards; won the 2012 CBI Book of the Year (formerly The Bisto award) and the 2012 CBI Children’s Choice Award; won the 2013 RAI Book of the Year, and been shortlisted for the Sakura Medal (English High) 2014.
October 17, 2014
Lots of YA writers are trying their hand at supernatural fiction these days. You should see the bookshelves here at The Inquirer: Practically every other book has some wannabe-spooky, Twilight-looking image on its cover.
But not every author gets it right. You need something more convincing than a too-pale boyfriend to craft a good horror story – and Irish fantasy author Celine Kiernan has totally nailed it with Into the Grey, a complex, harrowing story of history, hauntings, and long-ago losses.
The Finnertys, an ordinary, boisterous family of twin brothers Dom and Pat, baby sister Dee, and their parents and grandma, set off from Dublin to their annual summer getaway by the beach. Kiernan has an evocative turn of phrase that feels distinctly Irish: The family’s holiday drive is “vivid with fresh grass, diesel fumes, and the crusty-bright smell of the sea.”
Upon arrival, Pat thinks the cozy house seems shabby, dark, and stale; he knows something is wrong. Kiernan soon shows us what it is; A goblin of kind is haunting Dom, and Pat is the only one who knows it. We share his mounting horror as he watches his brother go where the ghoul leads him, helpless to do anything about it.
The whole book is powerful, but there’s one scene depicting the family in the kitchen – Pat trying to keep from becoming hysterical as things with Dom grow ever weirder – that is as unsettling as one of Poe’s ghastlier moments.
If you’re in the mood for a scare this autumn, Kiernan’s beautiful novel comes highly recommended. Just read it in the daylight maybe, and don’t say I didn’t warn you.
October 1, 2014
Another wonderful review for Into the Grey. This time from The Bulletin of the Centre for Children’s Books (October edition) Thrilled to be getting such great support from the teachers and librarians and children’s book community of the US (NOTE: there are some spoilers in the review below) :
Kiernan, Celine Into the Grey.
Candlewick, 2014 290p Trade ed. ISBN 978-0-7636-7061-0 $16.99 E-book ed. ISBN 978-0-7636-7409-0 $16.99 R Gr. 8-12
After a fire burns down their home, Irish fifteen-year-old twin brothers Pat and Dom and their family move into the coastal cottage where they’d previously spent summers. Narrator Pat, Dom, and their baby sister Dee all begin to have nightmares: Pat’s take him to the trenches in World War I, where he dreams his own death, but Dom’s nights are worse: he’s not dreaming but being haunted by a ghostly boy, who in a panic slips into Dom’s body. Now a horrified Pat must try to get his brother back and also deal with the distressed soul of young Francis, who is unable to make sense of the world he sees and is desperately searching for his own lost brother. Irish author Kiernan has a taut and atmospheric style, vividly capturing the Ireland of the early 1970s and its earlier twentieth-century shadows. Like Roddy Doyle’s A Greyhound of a Girl (BCCB 6/12), this offers a keen poignancy in its revisiting the years of the now old and the long-dead: an old World War I veteran whose suicide attempt Pat and Dom foil, Pat’s dementia-impaired grandmother, and not one but two ghosts converge in a shared past and an array of tragic losses. Also like that book, however, it keeps the young people at the fore, since this is very much Pat’s story of brothers being cruelly, perhaps irrevocably torn apart. The two generations, the young and the old, share the knowledge of what’s happening, and the book mines considerable anxious tension from their attempts to negotiate seemingly everyday situations without betraying the truth to Pat and Dom’s unknowing parents. American readers may not be familiar with the Irish Republican tensions and the period’s cultural landmarks, but they’ll be right at home with eerie, heartbreaking ghosts and a boy’s implacable loyalty to his beloved brother. DS
September 23, 2014
I’m proud to announce that we’ll be launching this lovely short story anthology on the 2nd of October in Easons on Dublin’s O’Connell St. Come and join us! All proceeds go to Fighting Words, the children’s writing center in Dublin.
International readers can preorder at all the usual online sites, and all the short stories are also available digitally for only 99p (or a little over 1 USD)
Anybody interested in preordering my short story The Last Cat, can do so HERE. All proceeds go to the Fighting Words Literacy project. (Blurb of The Last Cat: As snow falls on silent soldiers waiting either side of a bleak battlefield, a single black cat crosses no-mans-land, hoping against hope that one person will notice him before it is too late.)
To quote the wonderful Roddy Doyle below:
Beyond the Stars: Twelve Tales of Adventure, Magic and Wonder. You’ll be hearing a lot about this book as it’s a labour of love and was a true team effort. All proceeds in aid of Fighting Words. Stories by Roddy Doyle, John Boyne, Marita Conlon McKenna, Judi Curtin, Eoin Colfer, Celine Kiernan, Siobhán Parkinson, Derek Landy, Gordon Snell, Michael Scott, Oisín McGann; illustrations by Steve Simpson, Paul Howard, Chris Judge, Tatanya Feeny, Olywn Whelan, Niamh Sharkey, Alan Clarke, Michael Emberley, Marie-Louise Fitzpatrick, Chris Haughton and Oisin McGann.
September 12, 2014
Today I suggested to a friend that, rather than reread To Kill a Mockingbird, he’d read something where a POC saves the day. I then broadened it to books with strong, nuanced MCs with agency that are also POC, and put the word out for recommendations.
What follows is the list I received over twitter and FB. Please feel free to add to the list in the comments section, On FB or on Twitter. I’ll keep adding as they come in
(PLEASE NOTE, I haven’t read all these books. Any that I have will have an asterisk. I suspect there is a wide variety of age ranges here so please check books before buying for younger readers)
The Absolutely True Diary of a Part Time Indian by Sherman Alexie*
Birds Without Wings by Louis de Bernières*
The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao by Junot Díaz*
Wild Seed by Octavia Butler
The Astonishing Life of Octavian Nothing and its sequel, Kingdom of the Waves by MT Anderson
The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms by NK Jemsin*
Salt Road by Nalo Hopkinson
The Hap & Leonard series of crime novels (The Savage Season etc) by Joe R. Lansdale* (I’ve read and loved these books, but take note that the narrator is white. His friend Leonard, however, features prominently in the books, is gay, a black man, and a brilliant character.)
Edge Of Dark Water by Joe R Lansdale (see note above: white narrator, but apparently also features a prominent black MC. Both MCs are female.)
Un-Lun-Dun Un Lun Dun is a young adult fantasy novel by China Miévil
The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms* and sequels, by N. K. Jemisin
Black Ajax by George MacDonald Fraser* ( note, this is an historical novel based on the career of Tom Molineaux. It does not pull its punches about anyone or anything)
The Private Eye by Marcos Martin and writer Brian K. Vaughan (digital comic)
Any book by Malinda Lo
One Crazy Summer by Cinda Williams Garcia
The Mighty Miss Malone by Christopher Paul Curtis
Anansi Boys by Neil Gaiman
Greenglass House by Kate Milford
The Golem and the Jinni by Helene Wecker*
Ben Janvier mystery novels (A Free Man of Color etc) by Barbara Hambly
Lagoon by Nnedi Okorafor
The Eternal Sky Trilogy by Elizabeth Bear
Yashim the Eunuch mystery novels (The Janissary Tree etc) by Jason Godwin*
On a Red Station, Drifting by Aliette de Bodard
Earthsea (A Wizard of Earthsea, The Tombs of Atuan, The Farthest Shore, Tehanu) series by Ursula K. Le Guin
The Craft Sequence (Three Parts Dead, Two Serpents Rise, Full Fathom Five) by Max Gladstone
Scale-Bright by Benjanun Sriduangkaew
Bless Me, Ultima by Rudolfo Anaya
Anything YA or MG by Nancy Farmer
Anything by Rita-Williams Garcia
Brown Girl in the Ring and Midnight Robber by Nalo Hopkinson
Parable of the Sower, Patternmaster and Clay’s Ark by Octavia Butler
The Beet Queen by Louise Erdrich
Otherbound by Corinne Duyvis
Kindred by Octavia Butler
Wild Swans by Jung Chang*
My Name is Red by Orhan Pamuk*
Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe by Benjamin Alire Sáenz*
A Stranger in Olondria by Sofia Samatar
Killing Moon/Shadowed Sun duology by NK Jemisin
Isles of the Forsaken by Carolyn Ives Gilman
Air by Geoff Ryman
White is for Witching by Helen Oyeyemi
Wonderful Adventures of Mrs Seacole in Many Lands by Mary Seacole*
The Miracle Life of Edgar Mint by Brady Udall*