Archive for May, 2023

So I guess I’m now officially a novelist, rather than just a poet who wrote a novel, as I have TWO more novels coming out next spring, both engaging with fairytale, folktale, history, and the stories we tell about society.

The first, a children’s book called THE UNTAMEABLES, will be coming out with the Emma Press. I actually wrote it a couple of years ago but couldn’t find a publisher at the time, and I’m so pleased it has found a home.

The blurb is: The Untameables is a radical reworking of Arthurian myths, aimed at older Primary School Children (8-10). It draws on British folklore – Merlin, The Lady of the Lake, Tom Thumb, faeries and dragons – whilst also questioning the colonialist and brutal roots of the Arthurian legends. The novel reclaims the stories I love, by retelling them from the perspective of those who work below-stairs – the gentle dog-boy, Roan, who hates violence, and his friend Elva – as they try to beat the Knights of the Round Table on their quest to find the Holy Grail that could save his mother’s life. More info here.

I’d love to come to your school or children’s bookshop to read, talk or get children writing medieval riddles.

I’m also absolutely thrilled to announce my second adult novel will be coming out next spring in the US with the fabulous Avid Reader Press. THE MODERN FAIRIES is loosely inspired by the real adventures of the salonnières of the late seventeenth century who shaped fairy-tales as we know them. We meet Mme D’Aulnoy – who coined the term fairy tale – Henriette-Julie Murat, Charlotte-Rose de la Force, Charles Perrault, Marie-Jeanne L’Heritier de Villandon and others – the group who collected and originated tales including Red Riding Hood, Sleeping Beauty, Rapunzel, Rumplestiltskin, Beauty and the Beast, Bluebeard and Cinderella, over 100 years before the Brothers Grimm. They live in a world of mirrors, princesses, evil queens, splendid balls, poisoned fruit, and women locked in towers. And as their subversive tales threaten to put them all in grave danger, they begin to wonder: who is the wolf?

It’s a love letter to storytellers everywhere. It’s also my first romantic comedy, that I hope channels the dazzling wit of these salonnières. In many ways it feels like the book I’ve been waiting to write all my life, bringing all my obsessions together!!

Can’t quite believe my luck that I have two novels coming out. More soon…

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