Mumstown Books Expert

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    Hi all,

    This is my first ever article as the new Books Expert for Mumstown. However I have been here as Bookwitch right form the beginning, can you believe that Mumstown is now 6 years old? Some of you living in or around Drogheda may already know me as Lisa Doyle-Redmond.
    I have worked in bookselling now for twelve years, having worked for Dubray Eason and Waterstones. For the last couple of years I have also been reviewing books on my blog and occasionally on LMFM radio. So it’s probably fairly obvious by now that books are my passion, so I am very excited about my new role as Mumstown Book Expert.
    I would really love members to get in touch and ask me any questions you may have about books; whether you want a recommendation for yourself, your kids or for a gift idea. You can message me here or find me on twitter @LisaReadsBooks or email me
    I will be featuring a book of the month for adults and one for kids and I hope to generate discussion about these books and books in general, like an on-line book club.
    I will also be posting a weekly feature “Is there a book in you?” This is a week by week writing guide for those who want to start writing fiction. So please get in touch if you have any writing questions.

    The first Book of the Month is In a Moment by Caroline Finnerty which is out now from Poolbeg.
    This is Caroline’s first novel and it features the story of Adam and Emma whose marriage seems to be falling apart and Jean whose son’s violent outbursts are becoming increasingly terrifying. In a moment the characters lives intersect and are changed forever.
    Kids Book of the Month is Back to Blackbrick by Sarah Moore Fitzgerald out now from Orion. This is a fantastic debut for older kids and teens which I am sure adults will also fall in love with.

    I would love to hear your feedback, about these books and any other books which you have enjoyed recently.


    If anyone got a book token for Mother’s Day and you are looking for a recommendation please ask. There are so many fantastic books that have just been published. Tell me the last two books you loved and I will recommend a title for you.

    In the meantime, here are some suggestions.

    The Misinterpretation of Tara Jupp by Eva Rice
    From the author of The Lost Art of Keeping Secrets this is the story of Tara lured away from her rural home to the bright lights of London in 1962, she is caught in a whirlwind of music, fashion and love. (Heron Books)

    From This Moment On by Colette Caddle
    Dealing with the sensitive but topical subject of workplace bullying, Colette is a great writer who knows how to keep readers turning the pages. (Simon & Schuster)

    Keeping Mum by Emma Hannigan
    Dealing with three mothersand their daughters. Emma isan expert at the family relationship tale. (Hachette Books Ireland)

    His Dark Lady by Victoria Lamb
    A wonderful Tudor tale for historical fiction fans about Shakespeare’s mysterious muse. (Bantam Press)

    Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn
    Flynn’s third novel has been a word of mouth success. If you like crime and psychological drama this will be right up your street. Read the book everyone is talking about. (Orion)

    Ruth Galloway series by Elly Griffiths starting with The Crossing Places
    This is a series of books (the fifth is out now in hardback) which I recently discovered and they are fantastic. They feature a forensic archaeologist working with the police to solve crime in rural Norfolk If you want to escape from Scandinavia just for a break although there are some fab new Scandi crime novels out now. More on those later.(Quercus)


    The Ark of Don Ruadh by Maria Burke is a fantasy for 10 and upwards featuring Irish legends and the supernatural. (Currach Press)

    Wormwood Gate by Katherine Farmar is another fantasy this one is set in Dublin. (Little Island)

    For younger kids Poolbeg have a great series out now called In a nutshell which retells famous tales current titles include
    The Salmon of Knowledge
    The Children of Lir
    How Cúchulainn got his name
    The Story of Saint Patrick

    If you would like more information of these titles or more recommendations, please get in touch or check out my book review blog


    I saw those kids books other day – the "in a nutshell" series was thinking of getting it for my girls – nice to see a recomendation

    We def keep an eye on this thread 😉
    love reading myself but find since i had the girls that i just don’t have as much time


    Thanks Munchin do keep in touch and ask away if you need a recommendation


    The Women’s Prize for Fiction has some great titles on the longlist announced today. I was quite surprised to see that Maggie O’Farrell was not nominated as I thought Instructions for a Heart Wave was outstanding.

    Here is the list

    Kitty Aldridge
    A Trick I Learned From Dead Men

    Jonathan Cape

    Kate Atkinson
    Life After Life


    Ros Barber
    The Marlowe Papers


    Shani Boianjiu
    The People of Forever are Not Afraid


    Gillian Flynn
    Gone Girl

    Weidenfeld & Nicolson

    Sheila Heti
    How Should A Person Be?

    Harvill Secker

    A.M Homes
    May We Be Forgiven


    Barbara Kingsolver
    Flight Behaviour

    Faber & Faber

    Deborah Copaken Kogan
    The Red Book


    Hilary Mantel
    Bring Up the Bodies

    Fourth Estate

    Bonnie Nadzam


    Emily Perkins
    The Forrests

    Bloomsbury Circus

    Michèle Roberts


    Francesca Segal
    The Innocents

    Chatto & Windus

    Maria Semple
    Where’d You Go, Bernadette

    Weidenfeld & Nicolson

    Elif Shafak


    Zadie Smith

    Hamish Hamilton

    M.L. Stedman
    The Light Between Oceans


    Carrie Tiffany
    Mateship with Birds


    G. Willow Wilson
    Alif the Unseen

    Corvus Books


    and yesterday saw the announcement of the Carnegie Shortlist for Children’s Fiction, there are some fabulous books on the list and some I really can’t wait to read. (The age ranges given areguidelines only) … rtlist.php

    The Weight of Water by Sarah Crossan (age 9+)

    A Greyhound of a Girl by Roddy Doyle (age 9+)

    Maggot Moon Sally Gardner (11+)

    In Darkness Nick Lake (13+)

    Wonder R.J. Palacio (10+)

    Midwinterblood Marcus Sedgewick (11+)

    A Boy and a Bear in a Boat David Shelton (8+)

    Code Name Verity Elizabeth Wein (13+)


    Another great shortlist just announced. The CBI awards, thats’s Children’s Books Ireland have just been announced.
    The shortlisted Titles are:

    The Terrible Thing That Happened to Barnaby Brocket by John Boyne and illustrated by Oliver Jeffers

    The Weight of Water by Sarah Crossan

    Hóng by Anna Heussaff

    Na Laochra is Lú by Laoise Ní Cléirigh and illustrated by Steve Simpson

    Spellbound, Tales of Enchantment from Ancient Ireland by Siobhán Parkinson and illustrated by Olwyn Whelan

    Mise agus an Dragún by Patricia Forde and illustrated by Steve Simpson

    Dark Warning by Marie Louise Fitzpatrick

    Oh No, George! by Chris Haughton

    This Moose Belongs to Me by Oliver Jeffers

    Grounded by Sheena Wilkinson

    Founded in 1990, The CBI Book of the Year Awards are the leading children’s book awards in Ireland. They are a celebration of excellence in children’s literature and illustration and are open to picture books and novels written in English or Irish by authors and illustrators born or resident in Ireland and published between 1st January and 31st December each year. Previous winners include John Boyne for his book The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas; Chris Haughton for A Bit Lost, Marie Louise Fitzpatrick for There and Kate Thompson for her books The New Policeman, Annan Water and The Alchemist’s Apprentice.

    Pádraic Whyte, chair of the judging panel that read more than 80 titles, said: “The ten books on this year’s shortlist offer children and young people from a broad age group rich and satisfying reading experiences. Many of the books engage with difficult contemporary issues while others are stories of whimsy and fun. This is a wonderfully diverse shortlist that highlights the literary and artistic excellence of current Irish Children’s Literature.”

    CBI who administers the awards, will again be working closely with reading groups from schools and libraries across Ireland. Ten specially selected junior juries will choose the winner of the Children’s Choice Award. Five other awards will be made in May also – The Book of the Year Award, The Eilís Dillon Award for a first time author or illustrator, Honour Awards for Fiction and Illustration as well as a Judge’s Special Award.

    Mags Walsh, Director at CBI said “Sharing excellent books with young readers is a great pleasure and this year we have ten books which we know will resonate with readers both young and old. Irish authors and illustrators rank among the best in the world so we are very proud to announce our shortlist today.”

    This year illustrator Steve Simpson has two books on the shortlist, Na Laochra is Lú written by Laoise Ní Cleirigh and Mise agus an Dragún written by Patricia Forde. Two of the shortlistees are debut authors, Sarah Crossan for her book The Weight of Water and Laoise Ní Cléirigh for Na Laochra is Lú. Half of the books on the shortlist were penned by previous award winners John Boyne, Siobhán Parkinson, Marie Louise Fitzpatrick, Chris Haughton and Oliver Jeffers.

    More details can be found at … -revealed/

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