The sequel to the critically acclaimed The Children of Gods and Fighting Men, The Words of Kings and Prophets is the powerful historical fantasy audiobook by Shauna Lawless.
Ireland, 1000 AD. Gormflaith is unhappily married to Brian Boru, High King of Ireland, and although a queen she struggles with her limited position. As an immortal Fomorian with the secret gift of magic, Gormflaith has a burning desire: to find and destroy the hidden fortress of her sworn enemies, the Descendants, who seek to kill her kind at all costs. She begins to use her magical powers, and discovers she is more skilled than she ever realised... but can she control what she will become?
Meanwhile Fódla, the Descendants' healer, mourns her banished sister but clings to life as the guardian of her young nephew. She seeks a place of safety for them both, but he has secrets of his own that could threaten everything - and Fódla must do all in her power to keep him hidden away from those who would use him for evil.
When a mysterious man comes to King Brian's court, his presence could spell disaster or deliverance for both Gormflaith and Fódla - and for Ireland herself. For he is Tomas, an ambitious immortal with few scruples - and he will do anything to see his plans become reality.
Soon, mortals and immortals alike are drawn towards a bitter conflict that could decide the future of Ireland and all her people.
Praise for the author: 'Gripping and beautiful. A Celtic Last Kingdom with wild magic and fierce heroines' ANNA SMITH SPARK
'Highlander meets The Last Kingdom... I was hooked from page one' ANTHONY RYAN
'A beguiling blend of fantasy, history, and politics... Every turn of the page ratchets up the tension. To read this novel is to fall into a richly imagined web of lives' D.K. FIELDS
The first in a gripping new historical fantasy series that intertwines Irish mythology with real-life history, The Children of Gods and Fighting Men is the thrilling debut novel by Shauna Lawless.
They think they've killed the last of us...
981 AD. The Viking King of Dublin is dead. His young widow, Gormflaith, has ambitions for her son – and herself – but Ireland is a dangerous place and kings tend not to stay kings for long. Gormflaith also has a secret. She is one of the Fomorians, an immortal race who can do fire-magic. She has kept her powers hidden at all costs, for there are other immortals in this world – like the Tuatha DE Danann, a race of warriors who are sworn to kill Fomorians.
FOdla is one of the Tuatha DE Danann with the gift of healing. Her kind dwell hidden in a fortress, forbidden to live amongst the mortals. FOdla agrees to help her kin by going to spy on Brian Boru, a powerful man who aims to be High King of Ireland. She finds a land on the brink of war – a war she is desperate to stop. However, preventing the loss of mortal lives is not easy with Ireland in turmoil and the Fomorians now on the rise...
'Highlander meets The Last Kingdom in this assured and captivating debut... I was hooked from page one.' Anthony Ryan
'Gripping and beautiful. A Celtic Last Kingdom with wild magic and fierce heroines.' Anna Smith Spark
'I really enjoyed the book. It's an excellent read.' Mark Lawrence
'A beguiling blend of fantasy, history, and politics. A gripping start to this series.' D.K. Fields
'A vividly written story that makes the ancient past feel contemporary.' Joseph O'Connor
'Rife with atmosphere and armies, magic and compelling characters, it swept me along and refused to be put down.' H.M. Long
'An epic historical fantasy that weaves myth and history into a sprawling tale of magic, intrigue, and war. Absorbing and richly detailed.' Ian Green
'With all the complex political machinations of A Song of Ice and Fire and the bloody battles of The Warlord Chronicles, it's ideal for fans of both.' Stephen Aryan
'An atmospheric journey into a thrilling historical fantasy world.' R.J. Barker
A gorgeous new festive read from the Kindle #1 bestselling author of The Ladies' Midnight Swimming Club
When Liv Latimer says goodbye to her colleagues and finishes work for the holidays, she's looking forward to a Christmas to remember with her boyfriend Eddie.
But before she makes it home, her phone rings, calling her back into work. And Liv is faced with a choice. Does she do as she's always done, and put herself second? Or, will she say no, so she can finally begin the life she's dreamed of?
Liv's decision will turn her world upside down in ways she could never have imagined.
Because whatever choice she makes, Liv is about to discover, fate finds a way...
From the bestselling Irish author of The Ladies' Midnight Swimming Club, comes an emotional and uplifting festive story about love, family and how a split-second decision can change your life.
'Joyful, life-affirming and inspirational' – Heidi Swain
'A superb romcom, with relatable and loveable characters that literally burst from the pages. With laugh-out-loud moments, woven between a heartwarming and hopeful story, it charmed me from the first page'
True love is only just a swipe away? Right?
Iris lives by numbers. The only thing missing from her perfectly calibrated life is a partner - and not for lack of trying. After decades of disappointment, Iris practically has a PhD in online dating. But something still eludes her: that unquantifiable spark.
Kim is too busy being the life of the party to look for love. Her terrible dates make great stories for her friends and co-workers, as long as she's not caught by her tyrannical boss, Iris.
Connie, Kim's recently widowed mum, is single for the first time since the 1970s. The dating game has changed a lot since her day . . .
Sick of being let down, Iris takes matters into her own hands - using her analytical skills to create the first real formula for love. With Kim and Connie on board, they launch Anaylzed, a dating app like no other.
As Anaylzed takes the world by storm, are the three women in over their heads? Is love really just a numbers game?
'A laugh on every page, entirely empathetic characters and a warm heart in the middle of the story. I found this book highly entertaining and totally satisfying' Liz Nugent
Praise for Claudia Carroll:
'Brilliantly funny' Sun
'An immensely talented writer' Sinéad Moriarty
Joanne Phillips' ordeal began aged 13 when she was gang-raped in her bedroom by local boys. Following the trauma, she dropped out of school, was befriended by an older man and was forced into prostitution aged 16.
Over the next six years, she was raped by over 500 men, starved, beaten, and transported around the country to brothels. Forced to have sex with men from all walks of life including lawyers, stockbrokers, doctors, a parish councillor, Joanne was even made to have sex with her former school headteacher – who didn't recognise her.
Every attempt to flee failed. Police warned her mother and stepdad she had chosen the lifestyle and even threatened to charge her parents with living off immoral earnings if they allowed her to move back. Escape seemed impossible, until one day she couldn't take any more.
Just before her 21st birthday, Joanne eventually escaped her enslavement. After being left alone briefly in a London flat, where she was expected to work, she took a chance after finding a bag of money and a handgun. Fearing for her life, she fled into the night with nothing but a plastic bag of cash. After catching a train to Northern Ireland, she found her real dad and hid at his home from her pimp.
Desperate to readjust to normal life, she found a job and went on to study at university. But when she tried to explain to a new boyfriend about her past, he didn't believe any of it was true, so she vowed to keep the abuse a secret – until years later, a conversation with one of her own teenage daughters changed her life...
This is a love story, set in the Irish literary world between 1986 and 2015. When they were first introduced by the poet Derek Mahon, Alannah Hopkin was an arts journalist turned full-time writer and Aidan Higgins, twenty-three years her senior, was a literary stylist, often cited as the heir to Ireland's great Modernist tradition. They wrote steadily during their twenty-nine years together, but their careers could not have been more different: while Aidan focused on fiction and memoirs, Alannah prioritised work that paid the bills. This gave Aidan the most stable and productive years of his life. But as his eyesight failed and his memory began to fade, Alannah became his carer and had to fight to keep her own writing career alive.
Drawing from diaries and notebooks, and correspondence with writers such as Samuel Beckett, Alice Munro and Harold Pinter, this is a unique record of a major Irish writer. From the joyful honeymoon years - filled with launches, festivals and visits to their Kinsale home by Richard Ford, Edna O'Brien and other literary legends - to the increasingly difficult years of Aidan's decline, Hopkin tells their story candidly and without commentary. She shows us how, in spite of all, they remained the best of friends, in love until Aidan's very last breath.
A Very Strange Man is an exceptional piece of writing, objective and authoritative, personal, honest and moving.
Allannah Hopkin is based in southwest Ireland. She is The 2020 Frank O'Connor International Fellow. Her story collection 'The Dogs of Inishere' was published by Dalkey Archive Press in 2017. Her stories have appeared in the London Magazine and The Cork Literary Review, among others, and have been short-listed for the RTÉ Short Story Award. She has published two novels with Hamish Hamilton.
The Western world has turned its back on migrants, leaving them to cope with one of the most devastating humanitarian crises in history.
Reporter Sally Hayden was at home in London when she received a message on Facebook: “Hi sister Sally, we need your help.” The sender identified himself as an Eritrean refugee who had been held in a Libyan detention center for months, locked in one big hall with hundreds of others. Now, the city around them was crumbling in a scrimmage between warring factions, and they remained stuck, defenseless, with only one remaining hope: contacting her. Hayden had inadvertently stumbled onto a human rights disaster of epic proportions.
From this single message begins a staggering account of the migrant crisis across North Africa, in a groundbreaking work of investigative journalism. With unprecedented access to people currently inside Libyan detention centers, Hayden’s book is based on interviews with hundreds of refugees and migrants who tried to reach Europe and found themselves stuck in Libya once the European Union started funding interceptions in 2017.
It is an intimate portrait of life for these detainees, as well as a condemnation of nongovernmental organizations and the United Nations, whose abdication of international standards will echo throughout history. But most importantly, My Fourth Time, We Drowned shines a light on the resilience of humans: how refugees and migrants locked up for years fall in love, support each other through the hardest times, and carry out small acts of resistance in order to survive in a system that wants them to be silent and disappear.
In The Drowning Sea, Sarah Stewart Taylor returns to the critically acclaimed world of Maggie D’arcy with another atmospheric mystery so vivid listeners will smell the salt in the air and hear the wind on the cliffs.
For the first time in her adult life, former Long Island homicide detective Maggie D’arcy is unemployed. No cases to focus on, no leads to investigate, just a whole summer on a remote West Cork peninsula with her teenage daughter Lilly and her boyfriend, Conor and his son. The plan is to prepare Lilly for a move to Ireland. But their calm vacation takes a dangerous turn when human remains wash up below the steep cliffs of Ross Head.
When construction worker Lukas Adamik disappeared months ago, everyone assumed he had gone home to Poland. Now that his body has been found, the guards, including Maggie's friends Roly Byrne and Katya Grzeskiewicz, seem to think he threw himself from the cliffs. But as Maggie gets to know the residents of the nearby village and learns about the history of the peninsula and its abandoned Anglo Irish manor house, once home to a famous Irish painter who died under mysterious circumstances, she starts to think there's something else going on. Something deadly. And when Lilly starts dating one of the dead man's friends, Maggie grows worried about her daughter being so close to another investigation and about what the investigation will uncover.
Old secrets, hidden relationships, crime, and village politics are woven throughout this small seaside community, and as the summer progresses, Maggie is pulled deeper into the web of lies, further from those she loves, and closer to the truth.
A Macmillan Audio production from Minotaur Books
In early 2018, Erin Darcy created an online art project, In Her Shoes - Women of the Eighth, to safely and anonymously share private stories of the real and devastating impact of the Eighth Amendment to the Constitution of Ireland. In the five months leading up to the referendum on abortion, the project asked a simple question of undecided voters: put yourself in her shoes.
Within weeks, Erin was receiving hundreds of stories from a broad spectrum of experiences of planned and unplanned terminations. By the time Ireland historically voted Yes to Repeal the Eighth on 25 May 2018, the page had gathered over 100,000 followers, was reaching over four million readers each week and had been featured by international news outlets. What began as a solo act of grassroots activism by a mother and an artist had unleashed a national conversation on human rights that would change Ireland forever. Where once there had been silence and shame, now there was honesty and empathy.
For 43 per cent of voters, it was 'stories in the anthology and a memoir media' that influenced their decision to vote 'Yes'. But for Erin Darcy, In Her Shoes was also a distraction from her own heartbreaking loss, loneliness and depression as she grieved her mother's death and sought a community of her own. In time, it became an act of healing, as she connected with other women, mothers and campaigners who felt the same overwhelming need to do something.
Here, In Her Shoes: Women of the Eighth reproduces thirty-two of those anonymous stories, representing the entire island of Ireland. Published with their authors' consent, they are powerful testimonies to storytelling as salvation from heartache, stigma and threat. Together, they record lived truths previously omitted from history and signal a monumental change in the social landscape of Ireland.
Please note that this audiobook includes graphic descriptions and lived experiences that some listeners may find upsetting.
Born in Oklahoma, Erin grew up travelling the Mid West of the US with her family. At the age of 15 and looking for a pen pal in Ireland - she found the man of her dreams and traveled alone to Ireland when she was 17 to meet him in person. She finished school and moved to Galway, where she now resides with her husband and three children.
Erin is a self taught artist and activist. Inspired by women and children, Erin's paintings and writing often reflects the taboo subjects of miscarriage, grief, mother-loss, abortion, depression, and radical self love.
How far would you go to protect your family?
’Full of heart and essential truth, this moving book will sweep you to a very satisfying ending and perhaps a few happy tears’ KATIE FFORDE
‘A riveting family saga, with terrific characters, that has you utterly engrossed from start to finish. I loved it’ PATRICIA SCANLAN
‘I absolutely adored every page of it . . . No one blends love and loss, happiness and heartbreak quite the way Carmel does. Not since the late, great Maeve Binchy’ CLAUDIA CARROLL
‘An emotional family drama . . . full of the warmth we’ve come to associate with Carmel’s writing’ HAZEL GAYNOR
‘An exploration of familial love and grief . . . and how in the face of our greatest trials, our strongest bonds can be forged’ ROISIN MEANEY
’Warm, uplifting and thought-provoking . . . The perfect book club read!’ DEBBIE JOHNSON
‘Beautifully written, warm and wise. I adored it’ ALEX BROWN
Hawke’s Bay, New Zealand
While Rachel Butler likes her life in a pretty Dublin coastal village, her heart lies in Hawke’s Bay, where she grew up. Visiting for the first time since tragedy tore her family apart, she and her stepchildren fall for its beauty and outdoor lifestyle.
As Rachel picks up the threads of her life as a single parent, she can’t shake off the memories of her loving family in New Zealand – and her dream house, the villa on the bay. But it’s time to move forwards with their life in Ireland, close to the children’s grandparents, amid the familiar surroundings they all know well.
Until the children’s grandmother, still grieving, starts to interfere, questioning Rachel's position as stepmother.
Until Rachel’s attempts to strengthen the family she loves so dearly backfires, pitting everyone against each other.
And until her late husband’s parents mend the rift that has existed as long as she’s been married – bringing with them an explosive secret . . .
‘The most important work of contemporary reporting I have ever read’ SALLY ROONEY
‘Journalism of the most urgent kind’ FINANCIAL TIMES
The Western world has turned its back on refugees, fuelling one of the most devastating human rights disasters in history.
In August 2018, Sally Hayden received a Facebook message. ‘Hi sister Sally, we need your help,’ it read. ‘We are under bad condition in Libya prison. If you have time, I will tell you all the story.’ More messages followed from more refugees. They told stories of enslavement and trafficking, torture and murder, tuberculosis and sexual abuse. And they revealed something else: that they were all incarcerated as a direct result of European policy.
From there began a staggering investigation into the migrant crisis across North Africa. This book follows the shocking experiences of refugees seeking sanctuary, but it also surveys the bigger picture: the negligence of NGOs and corruption within the United Nations. The economics of the twenty-first-century slave trade and the EU’s bankrolling of Libyan militias. The trials of people smugglers, the frustrations of aid workers, the loopholes refugees seek out and the role of social media in crowdfunding ransoms. Who was accountable for the abuse? Where were the people finding solutions? Why wasn’t it being widely reported?
At its heart, this is a book about people who have made unimaginable choices, risking everything to survive in a system that wants them to be silent and disappear.
‘Compassionate, brave, enraging, beautifully written and incredibly well researched. Hayden exposes the truth’ OLIVER BULLOUGH
‘Blistering’ LINDSEY HILSUM
‘The most riveting, detailed and damning account’ CHRISTINA LAMB
‘One of the most important testaments of this awful time in life's history. It is both heartbreaking and stoic. I cry reading any page of it’ EDNA O’BRIEN