Monday, 12 March 2012

Interview with - a new site showcasing the latest book trailers

With more and more writers and publishers releasing trailers for their new titles, there’s no doubt that book trailers are becoming a big part of the publishing industry. is a new website, showcasing the latest book trailers from around the net. I caught up with the site’s designer and editor to find out a bit more…

She-Wolf: So, tell me about the site…

Bookreel: is a site aiming to bring together book trailers from a wide range of genres, everything from children’s books to YA, romance, fantasy, horror...

SW: And what about you – what’s your background?

BR: My background is mostly in writing music, which in turn has led to an interest in building websites as well. I was left in charge of getting a site online for a band I write for, and tinkering with that led me further down the rabbit hole in terms of playing with coding… so maybe not such an odd progression as it initially seems!

SW: And so you decided to make a site dedicated to book trailers? Where did the idea for come from?

BR: The idea was entirely accidental and grew from a discussion one evening with my fiancée. We were musing the online future of books in relation to the music and film industries and the trends digital media has brought about in consumerism. My partner mentioned book trailers, the existence of which I was aware of having written music for a couple of them, but I honestly hadn’t realized they were so big. So from there the creation of was entirely organic. As consumers of books, we both thought a site that had book trailers categorized by genre and author, much like a library, would be useful to people.

SW: Are there really that many book trailers out there?

BR: Absolutely, yes! And there are more and more being made daily, from pretty much every corner of the publishing world – classics, children's books, thrillers, graphic novels and so on – I don’t think there’s any genre that hasn’t had a book trailer made.

SW: You’ve made the decision to include self-published and small press titles alongside titles from the big publishing houses – tell me about this decision.

BR: Essentially, I didn't want to exclude anything, but also book trailers are an accessible form of promotion for someone (i.e. many self-published authors) working on a tight budget. They’re a great way to make people aware of titles without having to spend a fortune, so in terms of the Big 6 and indie authors it’s a fairly level playing field.

SW: There are a couple of other book trailer sites out there, what makes different?

BR: There’s a few others out there and they’re cool sites, but none of them seem to work in the way that I like to browse. For me it’s important to be able to look through information in different ways and I’m presuming (rightly or wrongly) that I'm not alone. So, for example, rather than trailers one after the other on one page, works with one trailer to a page – with the synopsis underneath, links to where you can buy the book, a rating system, a comments system (whereby you can log in to comment via your Twitter or Facebook credentials rather than having to join yet another site) – all of which can be browsed by category (including a short excerpt of the synopsis) or alternatively there’s an A-Z of authors. And, naturally, there’s a good old fashioned search function too.

SW: So people can rate the trailers on the site?

BR: Yes. I just thought it’d be a nice interaction and would give people browsing for something new an indication of a book’s popularity.

SW: I notice there are also some interviews on the site as well. Why have you decided to include these?

BR: Although the site is primarily about the trailers, I didn’t want to move that away from the authors in any way, so I thought an interview section where the author can talk about their book and trailer would be interesting.

SW: You have a lot of trailers up so far – any personal favourites?

BR: There are some quality trailers out there, that’s for sure, and they seem to get cleverer each day! Singling out any personal favourites is really hard, but off the top of my head, I was very much taken with the trailer for Dorian Gray, a French graphic novel by Enrique Corominas, based on the novel by Oscar Wilde. [Ed. - to see this trailer, click here]

SW: And have you found any good books as a result of seeing a trailer?

BR: Yes, I recently bought The Psychopath Test by Jon Ronson as a result of coming across the trailer. It’s a fantastic read by the way (and a cool trailer).

SW: Given all the trailers that you’ve seen, do you have any advice for writers thinking about getting a trailer made for their book?

BR: That’s a tough one. As a very general guide, I would say try and keep it around the 90 second mark, anything over that feels like it’s going on a bit. Watch a few other book trailers (preferably on!) that fit with your genre and get a general feel for what works best. And please please please don’t use any images or music that aren’t your own without explicit permission first, or you'll end up in a heap of trouble! There’s also a few places online you can contact to make your trailer for a reasonable fee. Above all, though, it has to be representative of your book.

SW: So, finally, why do you think writers should consider making a trailer? What are the benefits?

BR: I think they’re a great way of getting people’s attention, and if executed correctly can reach a far wider audience than just getting your book online and hoping for the best.

SW: Thanks for talking to me, I’ll look forward to checking out new content on the site.

BR: And thanks for having me.

To watch and rate new trailers on, send in your own, or to contact the Editor, click here.

Saturday, 10 March 2012

Review of M.T. Murphy, Lucifera's Pet (M.T. Murphy, 2009, Smashwords Edition)

I like reading books and being able to say ‘that’s not what I was expecting’, and mean it in a good way. And that was exactly my first thought after finishing Lucifera’s Pet. It really wasn’t what I was expecting, and I do mean that in a good way.

On first glance, M.T. Murphy’s tale of a centuries-old all-powerful vampire, who battles to retain her power with the help of a werewolf familiar (the eponymous ‘pet’) sounds like well-trodden ground. Lucifera Romana has been a vampire for nearly two millennia, and, at the beginning of the book, is a ‘master vampire’ with a reputation for brutality and ruthlessness. She is also fantastically beautiful, though it appears that most vampires have never actually laid eyes on her. The book begins a werewolf killing and eating a mugger who was foolishly trying to rob him, which sets the scene for the violence that will follow in the rest of the book. In the opening chapters, this beautiful vampire and killer werewolf are set up as being of a fairly familiar type. Lucifera, for example, has a name that sounds like ‘Lucifer’, and is described thus:

‘After all these years living in a thousand different places, her husky voice still has a hint of an accent. Spanish? Romanian? No one can really guess her origin beyond the fact that she is not from around here.’

The werewolf, on the other hand, is more ‘urban’ – despite his Irish accent, he appears to be more at home in the Los Angeles setting than his vampire companion – and less aloof and disconnected.

The first part of the book, narrated from several different first person perspectives, tells of a battle between Lucifera (or, rather, her minions) and another vampire, who, it seems, is her nemesis. There is betrayal, double-crossing and violent assaults, which sets up the world of Lucifera’s Pet as a cold, calculating and unfeeling one. No matter how loyal or long their service, no-one can rely on the protection of their ‘master’.

There are some issues with Part I, which are a result of Murphy’s unusual story-telling technique. Each chapter has a different narrator, and I was a little confused at first. In the first three chapters, there was not enough difference between the narrative voices, or enough signalling of the shift in perspective, for me to work out who was narrating what. Murphy’s decision to use this unusual technique is a bold one, and I must admit that I was not convinced at first. In addition to this, Chapter Two is rather misleading. Given that this chapter – of all those in Part I – has the most intriguing backstory for its narrator, and names the speaker in the very first sentence, I assumed that this particular narrator (Christopher) would be one of the main characters. In fact, I almost forgot a lot of the details of the wolf and the vampire in the preceding chapter, as I was automatically reading them as secondary to Christopher.

Despite this, though, the quality of writing and the vividness of description and detail encouraged me to keep reading – and I’m really glad I did. By the end of Chapter Seven (the final chapter of the first part), the shifting perspective stops being confusing and becomes a really compelling aspect of the story. And in Part II, Lucifera’s Pet really comes into its own.

Without giving away too much of the story, the second part of the novel focuses on the vampire and her werewolf, offering much more of an insight into their relationship and their respective histories. The narration, again, shifts between first person voices, but this is restricted to Lucifera and her ‘pet’, and the story alternates between the two. The chronology also alternates, shifts and converges, but this is very much a strong point of the story, as it resists linear progressions for the protagonists – they do not simply move from ‘good’ human at the beginning to ‘bad’ supernatural being at the end. It also allows for some of the story to remain untold, giving the overall narrative of Part II a rather light touch.

Characterization is also a real strength of the second part of Lucifera’s Pet. Though the two eponymous characters appear to be very much ‘of a type’ in the opening chapters, the expanded version of their history gives them more depth and complexity. We learn about each of their lives prior to becoming a vampire/werewolf, but also of their initial transformations, adaptation to their new lives and, eventually, their meeting. Some things, which had previously seemed a little clichéd or stereotypical, are revealed as more nuanced – one important instance of this is the explanation of how Lucifera came by her name (which I found a charming detail, and somewhat unexpected).

There are unfortunately some slightly clunky anachronisms in this part of the book. The language that Mickey (which is, we find out, the werewolf’s name) uses during his childhood in eighteenth-century Ireland can be excused by the fact that this is a retrospective reflection, told as his life is ‘flashing before [his] eyes’ in the present day; however, the Ancient Roman ‘Romana Trading Company’ in Lucifera’s story didn’t really sound very authentic to me. I should probably also mention that there are a couple of minor editing errors (specifically a bit of inconsistency in capitalization). Nevertheless, these are, to some extent, mitigated by the engaging writing style and by how believable the characters and their motivations seem to be – their immortal supernatural status notwithstanding.

One detail I particularly liked, which I think gives a good indication of the subtlety with which Murphy draws his characters, comes shortly after Lucifera is transformed into a vampire. In an earlier chapter, it has been made quite clear that, as in many other vampire novels, a lack of remorse is part of the vampiric ‘curse’. When Lucifera goes on her first killing spree, she appears to have jettisoned human feelings. And yet, when faced with slaughtering the only woman who has previously trusted and supported her, she has a moment of pause, and decides to use her new powers to make the woman’s death as merciful as possible. She says:

'I took no pleasure as I tore the soft flesh of her neck. Her impending death troubled me far more than the others had. I wondered if she would haunt

Then her blood hit my tongue. All my misgivings were washed away by that delicious nectar. Sulpicia spent her dying moments reunited with her lost family in her mind. I spent those moments with my face buried in her warm flesh, stealing her life one drink at a time. Merciful death never tasted so sweet.'

This combination of mercy and brutality, kindness and selfish desire, is typical of the way Murphy explores the moral grey areas of his characters. Though it doesn’t make his protagonists ‘good’ – and they really aren’t – it does make them, ultimately, sympathetic and kind of likeable.

Part III of the novel returns to the point at which Part II ended, in present-day Los Angeles, and continues the battle between Lucifera and her ‘master vampire’ rival, Emil Vladu. However, this story now has more layers as a result of what has been revealed in the central portion of the novel. As the story resumes, the implications and significance of various interactions seem clearer.

Overall, Lucifera’s Pet is a well-told and well-crafted story, with an individual story-telling style and some enjoyable characters. It doesn’t really offer any significant departure from the standard vampire and werewolf mythos – silver is toxic to both, crucifixes are a problem, and lycanthropic transformation is a painful but exhilarating experience. I did enjoy the fact that, in this world, werewolf blood (though rumoured to be poisonous to vampires) seems to be more of an aphrodisiac than anything else. Despite this, though, the conditions of being a vampire/werewolf in Lucifera’s Pet are similar to those found in other novels and films.

This is not a criticism, though, as Murphy’s characters are interesting enough not to need dramatic ‘new’ traits. Additionally, given the recent trend for ‘explaining’ vampirism or lycanthropy through spurious pseudo-science (it’s a virus that transforms DNA being a popular explanation at the moment), it was nice to read a novel that steered clear of any real rationalization, and just asked us to accept that these creatures exist. Lucifera and Mickey don’t seem to really care where vampires and werewolves come from – and it’s easy to go along with that.

Lucifera’s Pet is a strong recommendation for vampire and werewolf fans: a mixture of ruthless, bloody violence (why nip at the neck, when you can tear out the throat?), compelling and (almost) tender relationships, and a handful of sex scenes makes it an engaging and readable book that will appeal to fans of darker urban fantasy. It is self-published, but compares well to many traditionally-published titles (and is much better than some). Though it was first published a couple of years ago, I definitely encourage you to look out for this one.

Friday, 9 March 2012

CFP: The Place of Hell: Topographies, Structures, Genealogies

An International conference held at King’s College London and The Warburg Institute on May 31 and June 1, 2013.

Call for Papers

A belief in Hell has been a staple of Christian thought from the earliest period of this religion. The depiction of Hell and its denizens – the devil, demons and the punished sinners – has an equally long history going back to at least the sixth century. From the eleventh century onwards, images of Hell become proliferate and more detailed in their presentation of the damned and their torments – in parallel to such texts as the popular Apocalypse of the Virgin. Artists come up with different solutions in picturing the various torments inflicted upon the sinners as well as the places where these torments take place. In the art of the late Byzantine period and the late medieval west, the various figures of the damned are presented with inscriptions detailing the crimes and sins for which they are being punished. In western Europe, literary texts add detail to the vision of Hell as well, starting with the 11th-century Vision of Tondal and culminating in Dante’s Divine Comedy. The images as well as the texts that we assume they are illustrating offer a rich field for research. Questions of iconography as well as the exploration of social meanings attached to these powerful representations present themselves. The exploration of developments within the body of texts on and depictions of Hell can be particularly fruitful.

The aim of this conference is to explore the place Hell occupied within society and art as well as the way Hell was envisaged as a physical place. The conference is organized as part of the Leverhulme Trust International Network project Damned in Hell in the Frescoes of Venetian-dominated Crete (13th-17th centuries). The island of Crete was governed by the Venetians from the thirteenth to the seventeenth centuries. During this period, the interplay of the religion and culture of the colonizers (Roman Catholic and Italian) and the majority of the population (Byzantine and Greek Orthodox) created tangible tensions. We are therefore particularly interested in material from the historical era covered by the project, approaches that involve comparisons between east and west, and presentations with a particular focus on Crete. Did depictions of Hell on the island’s churches follow theological debates and trends? Was their primary function the edification of the Orthodox congregations, or are other readings possible?

Topics for papers may include, but are not limited to:

· Texts about Hell and punishments for sinners in the Greek Orthodox world and/or the Latin west(13th-17th centuries)
· Images of Hell, with particular emphasis on its layout and topography as well as the layout of its pictorial representation
· Comparative papers on the intera_ction between Orthodox and Catholic notions and representations of Hell in the late medieval and early modern eastern Mediterranean
· The origins – both textual and pictorial – of perceptions and representations of the Afterlife and Hell in particular within the Christian tradition
· The use of Hell and punishment for sinners within contexts of social control (especially in rural communities) and afterlife management strategies

Papers by early career scholars soon after the completion of their PhD are particularly welcome.

Papers are restricted to 25 mins. Please send a short abstract and a brief cv to: Dionysios Stathakopoulos and Rembrandt Duits by June 30 2012.

Accepted speakers will be offered free accommodation and either a full refund of or substantial assistance towards their travel costs.

Review of Jason McKinney, Dog World (Jason McKinney, 2011)

Two things that I’m quite taken with at the moment: werewolves (obviously) and the apocalypse. So, I was naturally intrigued when I was sent a review copy of Jason McKinney’s self-published novel, Dog World, a military thriller telling the story of the werewolf apocalypse. I was, however, also somewhat trepidatious, as the recent explosion of self-published novels has left the market swamped with vampire, werewolf and other supernatural novels.

McKinney’s novel begins in Iraq, with a group of US soldiers facing a brutal attack from an unknown enemy. Reports of wild dog attacks, and a growing pile of bodies, are eventually revealed to be indications of an organized lycanthropic assault. Many of the soldiers are killed, and the survivors must band together to fight their werewolf enemy. The reader discovers that this attack is the work of the Aberration, a powerful werewolf group hell-bent on world domination and the farming of human ‘cattle’. Not all ‘lycans’ side with the Aberration, though, and it is left to the ‘good’ werewolves and the surviving humans to fight off the coming ‘werewolf apocalypse’.

McKinney’s werewolves are of a recognizable type. By this I mean that the transformation scenes and bodily changes his ‘lycans’ undergo will be familiar to fans of werewolf fiction. For example, one character, changing for the first time, experiences it thus:

“He felt his bones growing as they moaned in protest to the new additions. A raspy groan echoed painfully from his throat. He was desperately fighting to not start howling because of the fiery pain that criss-crossed his body. He thought of all the werewolf movies he’d seen as a kid. He knew now that they howled not in triumph but in torment.”

The main difference, then, with McKinney’s werewolves is the setting – these animals are not forest-dwelling loners or city-dwellers hiding their secret, but members of the US military. As the other characters become more aware of the existence of werewolves, Dog World offers some idea of how such supernatural creatures might be integrated into the macho and brutal world of the US army and Marine Corps. I particularly liked the coining of the term “poodle” as a derogatory term for werewolves, as it seemed to fit well with the culture McKinney was trying to depict.

Another interesting departure in Dog World comes with the references to vampires. In McKinney’s novel, these creatures are not undead rock stars or pale-faced heart-throbs, but rather corrupted and diseased scavengers, who subsist on the leftovers of the werewolves’ kills. It is unusual to find the hierarchy of werewolf/vampire thus presented, and I think McKinney deserves credit for a rather original take on this.

However, as with the book in general, this interesting idea is sadly not very well executed. The idea is there, but the craftsmanship needs much further attention.

Overall, the book is marred by frequent punctuation, formatting, spelling and grammar errors. "Where” and “were” are misused, as are “too” and “to”; apostrophes are omitted or added incorrectly; the dread phrase ‘could of’ appears on numerous occasions; spellings are occasionally inconsistent (so the vehicle is a “Humvee” on one page, and a “Humm-Vee” on another). These, and other errors, should have been dealt with by a proof-reader.

As well as being in need of a very rigorous edit, Dog World would also have benefitted from a thorough critique from a writing partner or group prior to its publication. I struggled to follow the first few chapters, as the number of characters (with backstory) introduced was overwhelming. Most of these characters were incidental, and most died before the end of Chapter Two. By the time the main group of characters (of which there were nine, which is far too high for a novel of this type) came together, I had completely lost track of who was who. This made it difficult for me to identify with any of the characters later in the story.

In terms of plot, there is also too much going on, and I think a good writing group or partner would have helped trim this down. Again, I lost track on numerous occasions. More seriously, though, there were some contradictions and plot-holes – such as conflicting versions of how vampires came into existence – that were rather frustrating. This frustration was added to by some inaccuracies in the pop culture references and in the ‘historical accounts’ given throughout the book (in overly lengthy exposition passages) – for instance, the frequent references to “The Black Plague” rather than “The Black Death”, or the misnaming of the character from Lord of the Rings as “Golem”. That these points weren’t picked up at a critiquing or editing stage suggests to me that these necessary stages of book production were either rushed or ignored completely

That said, I am aware that I am not the target audience for Dog World. One of the reasons the wealth of characters lost me was that I couldn’t follow the military ranks, jargon and abbreviations used in describing them. In addition to this, I found it very hard to identify or sympathise with such brutal characters – for instance, at one point a reference is made to lobotomizing POWs (albeit lycanthropic ones), which the central characters seem to think is fair since they are at war. However, I know lots of readers who love books of this genre, and who would find these aspects a positive, rather than a negative, feature of a novel. With some work, McKinney’s writing would definitely appeal to these readers.

I think it is also fair to say that Dog World is for American readers only, unless readers from outside the US have a high tolerance for inner monologues from non-Americans waxing lyrical about how fair and good the US government/military is. English readers in particular might find the depiction of “Britishness” a little too hard to take seriously. Aside from the continued use of the word “British” by characters who would, in reality, have described themselves as “English”, Dog World also has a character with “a mild Cockney accent” (?) who uses phrases like “allow me to cut to the meat of it, gentlemen” and “thanks for the tip, fellows”. Perhaps the oddest "Britishisms” in the novel were the way all the English characters used the expression “you’re taking a piss” when accusing someone else of making fun of them (for non-UK readers, the expression is “you’re taking the piss”), and the way everyone blew a raspberry when they gave someone the Vs (again, for non-UK readers, this is a British hand gesture, roughly equivalent to giving someone the finger, and definitely not always accompanied by a raspberry!).

I don’t want to dwell on any more of these errors here. As I stated at the beginning of this review, McKinney’s basic idea for the novel, and his original take on werewolves (and their relationship to vampires) is great and could have been developed into a really strong thriller. Instead, sadly, the “finished” novel reads like a first draft, and so is something of a let-down.

Had this book been brought to the writing group I used to co-ordinate, I certainly wouldn’t have rejected it outright. I would have advised the writer to keep listening to feedback, working on it, trimming it, redrafting it and giving it some overall polish (and I wouldn’t have said that on a public website). However, this has not been presented as a work-in-progress, but rather a finished product that is available to buy. I wonder if the current boom in self-publishing is making it a little too easy to hit the “publish” button before a book is actually ready…

Thursday, 8 March 2012

CFP: 3rd Global Conference: Performance: Visual Aspects of Performance

Tuesday 13th November – Thursday 15th November 2012

Salzburg, Austria

Call For Papers:

Theatre and the many varied expressions of performance practice are by their nature inter-disciplinary forms of art. They draw ideas and symbolisms from diverse theoretical and creative fields of humanities, making historical references and links, presenting social relations, putting forward great ideas and dilemmas of the mind, highlighting aspects of the human personality and employing all existing art-forms in order to create a performance as a whole. Performance practice, whether in a theatrical space, site-specific space, or as a street or public performance of any nature, can be examined from the artistic point of view, but also from a cultural, a sociological, a historical, a psychological, a semiological, an anthropological, as well as from an educational perspective. The term “performance practice” refers to the interface within which the work of the director, performer, movement director and choreographer, scenographer (set and costume designer), musical director, composer, lighting designer and sound designer meet. It also includes all aspects and issues involving the creative process, from the initial concept to the final realization and presentation to an audience.

The aim of this conference is to develop discussion with a focus on the visual aspects of performance brought up by visual and spatial artists and researchers in various performance disciplines and practices.

Papers, workshops, presentations and pre-formed panels are invited on any of the following themes:

1. Narrative and Meaning
* Visual interpretation of text / of narrative
* Visual literacy and perception within performance
* The relationship between narrative, visuality and textuality
* Challenging of established aesthetics, the relationship of old and new traditions
* Visual expression and symbolism in theatre and performance
* The notion of the visual metaphor
* The role of imagination today (before, during and after a performance)

2. Design Processes
* The birth of a visual concept
* Design as theatrical action
* Visual resources, and interpretation in performance
* Scenographic materials, form, texture, composition and light
* From design to realization – the process for the creation of a visual/spatial environment
* Collaboration and practice in the visual aspect of performance making
* Aesthetics and visual principles in performance
* Media and new technology as performance visual elements
* Challenging traditions: New approaches in performance design and practice

3. Set and Costume, discourse and practice
* Scenographer: The author of space?
* History of scenography
* Leading figures in the world tradition of scenography
* Costume and the body, embodiment and expression
* Actor-character: Dressing the performer, dressing the character
* Body and space: The spatial dynamics of costume
* The performativity of costume / The narrative of dress inperformance
* Costume sociology

4. Perception
* The gaze of the spectator / Aspects of spectatorship
* Experience and perceptions of the performer
* Experience and perceptions of the audience
* Cross-cultural appropriation, Inter-disciplinarity and Interactivity in performance
* The impact of new media on performance
* Liveness / humanness and the contemporary technological context

5. Pedagogy & Policy
* Designing theatre for diverse settings and audiences (e.g. children, elders, communities, people with disability)
* Performance, ethics, poetics, and politics – visual approaches
* Teaching the visual aspects of performance practice, context and approaches

Papers will also be considered on any related theme. 300 word abstracts should be submitted by Friday 4th May 2012. If an abstract is accepted for the conference, a full draft paper should be submitted by Friday 3rd August 2012.

300 word abstracts should be submitted to the Organising Chairs; abstracts may be in Word, WordPerfect, or RTF formats, following this order:

a) author(s), b) affiliation, c) email address, d) title of abstract, e) body of abstract, f) up to 10 keywords.

E-mails should be entitled: Performance3 Abstract Submission

Please use plain text (Times Roman 12) and abstain from using any special formatting, characters or emphasis (such as bold, italics or underline). Please note that a Book of Abstracts is planned for the end of the year. All accepted abstracts will be included in this publication. We acknowledge receipt and answer to all paper proposals submitted. If you do not receive a reply from us in a week you should assume we did not receive your proposal; it might be lost in cyberspace! We suggest, then, to look for an alternative electronic route or resend.

Organising Chairs:
Sofia Pantouvaki
Professor of Costume Design for Theatre and Film
Aalto University
School of Arts, Design and Architecture

Rob Fisher Network
Founder and Leader, Inter-Disciplinary.Net
United Kingdom

The conference is part of the Critical Issues programme of research projects. It aims to bring together people from different areas and interests to share ideas and explore various discussions which are innovative and exciting. All papers accepted for and presented at the conference will be eligible for publication in an ISBN eBook. Selected papers may be developed for publication in a themed hard copy volume(s).

For further details of the project, please click here.

For further details of the conference, please click here.

Please note: Inter-Disciplinary.Net is a not-for-profit network and we are not in a position to be able to assist with conference travel or subsistence.

Thursday, 1 March 2012

Manchester Medieval Society Lecture: John Gillis

The Fadden More Psalter

MANCHESTER MEDIEVAL SOCIETY and MANCASS are delighted to host jointly a lecture on The Faddan More Psalter by John Gillis Senior Conservator of books and manuscripts at Trinity College Library

Thursday 22 March 2012 at 6 p.m.

A large, leather-covered book was unearthed in 2006 in a peat bog in Co. Tipperary, Ireland. Despite its covering of brown peat, lettering and illuminated decoration were visible and it was immediately obvious that this was a Psalter (book of the Psalms), datable from its decorative style to the eighth-century, a golden age of manuscript illumination in Ireland and Northumbria. John Gillis is working with the National Museum of Ireland on examining and conserving the manuscript.

Venue: The Historic Reading Room, John Rylands University Library of Manchester, Deansgate Building.

Non-members are always welcome.