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Poet, Prophet, Fox: The Tale of Sinnach the Seer

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4.93  ·  Rating details ·  14 ratings  ·  12 reviews
A queer mytho-history of ancient Ireland.

*Finalist for the 2020 LAMBDA Literary Award in Transgender Fiction*

Long before history began, when Ireland was ruled by poets and tribal chieftains, the prophet Sinnach was the most powerful druid in the ancient province of Mumu. But before he was a prophet, before he was a poet, he was a just boy... a boy believed to be a girl.

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Paperback, 304 pages
Published November 1st 2019 by Moose Maple Press
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Average rating 4.93  · 
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Emily Tompkins
Dec 09, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Rarely does a book capture me as quickly as this one did. Such a fun read, as well as meaningful and interesting. I've been recommending it to everyone! This book addresses the relevant, important, and under-acknowledged topic that is the experience of transgender people, and it does so with admirable ease and eloquence. Besides that, it is just a great narrative that artistically incorporates all kinds of plant knowledge, spiritualism, herbalism, and exciting adventures! ...more
Kathy Maxwell
Jan 03, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I did not want this book to end!
I had gifted a copy to a friend who also could not put the book down....
I am already looking forward to BOOK TWO, patiently awaiting the story to unfold.
Tremendous thanks, M.Z. McDonnell.
Marcus Woodman
May 09, 2020 rated it really liked it
I think my favorite elements of this book were the descriptions of the fair folk, druidic power/magic, and how Sinnach grows and changes as a character. The beginning started somewhat slow, and there's some strong "typical trans narrative" elements here (not a BAD thing, just something I'm a bit personally fatigued with), but once Sinnach starts coming into his own, everything ramps up in such intriguing ways. McDonnell clearly cares about the subject matter a lot, and both their knowledge and c ...more
Miel Rose
Jan 31, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Beautiful, captivating storytelling. I was pulled into the story immediately and read it over two days. As someone who almost entirely engages with fiction through audiobooks due to a persnickety attention span, that says a lot.

This book would be appealing to folks with a lot of different interests, from historical fiction to fantasy, to the old ways of pagan Europe and ancient Irish culture, to how queer and trans folks have fit into the world in different times. I have a passion for all of th
...more
Jamie
Aug 02, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Poet, Prophet, Fox captured me from the first page. This book is a marvelous integration of three parts: the narrative story of Muirenn-Áedán-Sinnach, the mythologies of a hero and of the ancient people of Éire, and the wisdom and anthropology of ancient druidism. As I grew to care about Sinnach in all his complexities, so too I came to love his teachers, his communities, his people.

Particularly meaningful to me was the way MZM brought all of these characters and this time period to life. I was
...more
Marlow Murphy
Aug 30, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I devoured this book in two days and eagerly await the next entries in the series. MZ McDonnell envisions a character we'd understand today as transgender growing up in ancient Ireland. Through his eyes we experience a rich culture rooted in an enchanted land and follow a life of hardship, determination, and talent.

It can be a very frustrating experience looking for historical fiction with respectfully-written trans characters because gender diversity has so often been erased from history or isn
...more
Jessica LaBrie
Feb 14, 2020 rated it it was amazing
This book shines! It's an exquisitely well written story with a protagonist who is relatable not just as a young person, but as a trans person and a wise person in training. This is more than just a queer coming-of-age story or hero's journey, though it is both of those - it's great historical fantasy. The plot is well paced, with great foreshadowing and engrossing descriptions of the communities, herbal remedies, foods, etc that made it hard to put down! If you liked Monica Furlong's "Juniper" ...more
Rue McDonald
Dec 10, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Poet Prophet Fox was an incredibly gripping read. Once I began reading, Sinnach's story immediately captured my imagination and my heart. McDonnell has woven a compelling narrative from both diligent research and captivating speculative imagination. This story has strong resonance with the great mythic hero cycles of ancient Ireland as well as a cultivated depth of personal myth. I think it is such a compelling piece because it centers a queer hero's journey and, in so doing, challenges legacies ...more
Jessica Churchill
Apr 29, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Poet, Prophet, Fox: The Tale of Sinnach the Seer is a "can't put down" read. The adventure and journey are relatable and captivating. I highly recommend this book as a coming of age read for 13+ folx, but the story is engaging no matter the age. A combination of myth and mystery with the fae folk for added intrigue. I can't wait to read the next installment. ...more
Andy Wood
Jun 25, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Recommended by a friend. Intriguing story, fascinating historical points, magic, and queer representation! What more could you want in a book? First book I've picked up in a long time read it cover to cover in 3 days. Hard to put it down I'm sad I finished it already. Character development is amazing and as a trans person so very relatable and inspiring. Cant wait for more. ...more
Beckett Nelson
Apr 03, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Loved the Tales of Sinnach the Seer! Can’t wait until book 2 is available. Page 135, the words of Lí Lon were like the feeling you get when you sit in front of a fireplace and enjoy its warmth
Martha Waterman
Jan 20, 2020 rated it it was amazing
This fantastically told story captured me from the first paragraph. This book is for any lover of nature, adventure, or mythology. I fell in love with so many of the characters and can't wait for the next book! ...more
M.Z. McDonnell
Nov 18, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  (Review from the author)
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