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Thread: Irish fantasy

  1. #1

    Irish fantasy

    What are some good Irish or Celtic fantasy books besides the arthurian legend books. Are there any. I've read the Mabinogion and think it would be cool if those stories were retold in a modern fashion or new stories dealing with the magic and mysteries of ancient europe. Please let me know.

    Thank You

  2. #2
    the puppet master ArthurFrayn's Avatar
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    I'm sure that there are people here who might be able to give you recommendations, but there is a forum related to this one that deals with fantasy, and you'd probably get faster answers there.

    http://www.sffworld.com/forums/forumdisplay.php?f=6

  3. #3
    Staff Banger's Avatar
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    One good book is Irish Fairy and Folk Tales, edited by W.B. Yeats. It was published back in the late 19th century, and Yeats and his friends wanted to show off Ireland's literary tradition in support of Irish nationalism, but it also reflects the Victorian sentiments of its time. It's an enjoyable read and interesting from a historical standpoint.

    Another book that I haven't read yet but plan to is Emerald Magic: Great Tales of Irish Fantasy, a collection of short stories based on Irish folklore written by authors like Bradbury, DeLint, Lee, Yolen, Modesitt, etc.

  4. #4
    Try The Ill-Made Mute by Cecilia Dart-Thornton. It brims with seelie and unseelie wights.

    There's also Daughter of the Forest by Juliet Marillier. I haven't actually read this one myself, but I hear it's supposed to have a heavy celtic basis.

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    \m/ BEER \m/ Moderator Rob B's Avatar
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    Dart-Thornton's work has evoked rather mixed responses here. However, Marillier's Daughter of the Forest was a very good read. It was, in fact, the October 2004 book club selection in our Fantasy Book Club.

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    \m/ BEER \m/ Moderator Rob B's Avatar
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    Dart-Thornton's work has evoked rather mixed responses here. However, Marillier's Daughter of the Forest was a very good read. It was, in fact, the October 2004 book club selection in our Fantasy Book Club.

  7. #7

    Irish Fantasy

    What are some good Irish or Celtic fantasy books besides the arthurian legend books. Are there any. I've read the Mabinogion and think it would be cool if those stories were retold in a modern fashion or new stories dealing with the magic and mysteries of ancient europe. I have gotten some suggestions from another forum and am looking for more so please let me know.

    Thank You

  8. #8
    Lord of the Wild Hunt Mithfânion's Avatar
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    This thread should be moved to the Fantasy forum, not to the Fantasy bookclub.

  9. #9
    Registered User Ondine's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Armyfdrknss9
    What are some good Irish or Celtic fantasy books besides the arthurian legend books. Are there any. I've read the Mabinogion and think it would be cool if those stories were retold in a modern fashion or new stories dealing with the magic and mysteries of ancient europe. I have gotten some suggestions from another forum and am looking for more so please let me know.

    Thank You
    Any Book by Eddie Linehan who is an old Irish story teller should help you with your search. Eddie travelled Ireland for years telling stories in schools, libraries, on television, about the Fenian cycle in Ireland. Many of his myths and Legends books would be geared towards children but are beautifully wirtten stories! Eddie is a gealgoir so alot of his stuff can also be found in gaeilge (Irish Language). I'm sure that some of his work can be found on audio too. If you can get your hands on that stuff you would be in for a real treat as he propells you back into old ancient Ireland! Myths about "Fionn MacChumhail", Cuchulann, "Setanta" can all be foend on the net. Also www.tcd.ie/library/shop/catalog.php?catID=98 is a good place to start as it has loads of books on Irish mytholgy,histories, celtic gods, paganism in Ireland ... I could go on but am afraid I may run out of space!!! Anyway I hope this helps some bit

    Ya this thread should probably be moved to fantasy!
    Last edited by Ondine; August 4th, 2006 at 06:59 AM.

  10. #10
    Give me liberty! Ouroboros's Avatar
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    Double post!
    Last edited by Ouroboros; August 4th, 2006 at 10:51 AM.

  11. #11
    Give me liberty! Ouroboros's Avatar
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    A lot of the stuff sold in relation to ancient Ireland will be fully of 'oirishery' aimed at the tourist market, and is best steered well clear of.

    A good place to start for the real deal is with Táin Bó Cúailnge, which is the most important piece of the Ulster epic cycle. http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/0...lance&n=266239 There are various translations, this one links to Le Brocquy's, no idea what that's like, I only read older versions and an Irish verison.

    If you want to go towards general fantasy with vaguely celtic flavours, then there are a plethora of people to choose from, ranging from the dire (Caiseal Mor) to the rather good (Mark Chadbourne's quirky 'Age of Misrule' series and its spin-offs). There's also Stephen Lawhead's 'Paradise War' series to consider, and recently George Green wrote a version of the Cuchulainn myth called 'Hound'.

    Probably one of the best reappropriations of this material I've ever read was in Julian May's 'Saga of the Exiles'. It takes the mythological Tuatha De Danann and Fir Bolg and postulates their alien Pilocene-era society. Hard to explain, but a cracking SF series.

    Another thing worth looking at is the illustrator/artist Jim Fitzpatrick's work, such as the 'Book of conquests'. http://www.jimfitzpatrick.ie/
    Last edited by Ouroboros; August 6th, 2006 at 09:49 AM.

  12. #12
    Defender of Cononicals Physics Knight's Avatar
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    You could give O.R. Melling a try. She is a YA author, and I had only read her when I was younger so I cannot say if she appeals to adults. However, I did absolutly love her stories at the time. She has a theme of teenagers traveling to Ireland and getting caught up in Irish myths. My personal favourites were The Druid's Tune and The Hunter's Moon.

  13. #13
    Egor Maniac Steven Savile's Avatar
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    Slaine

    I know it is vulgar - but my first celtic fantasy is released in mass-market in the UK and US in December - Slaine: The Exile. It is part of a trilogy that I am personally very proud of. Okay, no links. It's up on Amazon, as is the cover. Cheers

    Steve

  14. #14
    Lord of the Wild Hunt Mithfânion's Avatar
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    Looks interesting to me, because I always liked the idea and story of Slaine, but didn't really connect with the rather vulgar art style of the comics. How would you compare the book to the comics themselves Steve?

    BTW, for the topic at hand, Ourobourous has mentioned some good ones:

    Caiseal Mor ( I agree he is dire and should be avoided, lifeless writing)
    Mark Chadbourn
    Stephen Lawhead, primarily Albion and also the Arthurian series.
    Georgre Green: Hound ( has a prequel as well)
    Red Branch, Finn Maccool, Last Prince of Ireland and Lion of Ireland, ally by Morgan Llywelyn.
    "Ireland" by Frank Delaney
    the Shining Company-Rosemary Sutcliff

  15. #15
    Egor Maniac Steven Savile's Avatar
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    Slaine

    Mith,

    Basically I took the core of Slaine, but turned it into a proper 'coming of age' fantasy, because parts of the comic don't work in terms of continuity and other parts were done to dodge Mary Whitehouse back in the day of censorship I also reworked a lot of that.

    It's primarily good fun, in a kind of like a modern day RE Howard...

    Stylistically, I guess it comes close to some of the older Gemmell stuff.


    As for Lawhead - I support the Paradise War recommendations - brilliant brilliant stuff!

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