geraldine-mccaughrean

Geraldine McCaughrean reveals the inspiration behind her new novel, “Where the World Ends”

Next month, Usborne are publishing a richly compelling new novel by master storyteller, Geraldine McCaughrean, based on the true story of a group of boys who were left stranded on Stac in Armin in 1727. Below, Geraldine tells us a little more about the inspiration behind this incredible book. 

Sometimes history can be heartless and tight-lipped. It tells us the facts, but not the feelings, and we are left beating on its windows shouting, “Yes, but what were their names? What did they say? What became of them?” Those are the moments fiction swoops on, like a happy magpie. I certainly do. 

The whole fabric of Scotland is a tapestry of ancient stories and histories, suffering and bravery, but the remote archipelago of St Kilda has a particular way of snaring the imagination. Harsh and beautiful, suspended beneath its flocking birds, it asks what YOU would find there – inner peace or terrible isolation? The simple life or a terrible familiarity with death? The lives of its islanders centuries ago are nigh impossible for the modern mind to grasp. But they flicker there on the rim of the imagination, demanding admiration. 

When I came across the story of the boys marooned on Stac an Armin in 1727, it tantalised with its lack of detail. A party of fowlers went out to harvest gannets, feathers and eggs, and no boat came to take them home again. What did they suppose had happened? What explanations crossed their minds? How did they cope? I thought I knew where I meant to take the story, but as usual the joy came in finding out as I went along. The novel is more guesswork than history, but the fact those men, those boys genuinely existed, certainly upped the ante. 

Where the World Ends is aimed at the teenage reader – has more in common with The White Darkness and The Stones are Hatching than Peter Pan in Scarlet. Grim and scary in parts, it aims to make you fret for the protagonists and keep on hoping for the best. Crossings to St Kilda are rough and rarely made. But this one, I hope, is well worth making.

“Brilliant, beautiful… as unpredictable as the sea itself.” Philip Reeve
COMING MAY 2017

Not everyone can be rich. Not everyone can be strong or clever. Not everyone can be beautiful. But we can all be brave! If we tell ourselves we can do it; if we say to our hearts, “Don’t jump about”; if we carry ourselves like heroes… we can all be brave!
We can all look Danger in the face and be glad to meet it, and draw our swords and say, “Have at you, Danger! You don’t scare me!”
Courage is just there for the taking: you don’t need money to buy it. You don’t need to go to school to learn it! Courage is the thing, isn’t it? […]
All goes if courage goes!
—  Peter PanPeter Pan in Scarlet, Geraldine McCaughrean
Not everyone can be rich. Not everyone can be strong or clever. Not everyone can be beautiful. But we can all be brave. We can all look danger in the face and be glad to meet it. Courage is just there for the taking; you don’t need money to buy it. You don’t need to go to school to learn it. Courage is the thing, isn’t it?
—  from Peter Pan in Scarlet by Geraldine McCaughrean

He has never broken his terrible habit of eavesdropping. So, maybe that wasn’t the rustle of pages you heard while this story lasted, but Peter Pan himself, listening in. In exchanged for a story of yours, he might show you his most prized possession: James Hooks’ map of Neverland.

In exchange for a smile, he may show you Neverland itself.


Peter Pan In Scarlet, Geraldine McCaughrean

Peter Pan has never broken his terrible habit of eavesdropping.

So, maybe that wasn’t the rustle of pages you heard while this story lasted, but Peter Pan himself, listening in. In exchange for a story of yours, he might show you his most prized possession: James Hooks’ map of Neverland. 

In exchange for a smile, he may show you Neverland itself.

- Peter Pan in Scarlet, Geraldine McCaughrean

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Even if we are too old to be a lost boy, we are never too old to enjoy Neverland. Check out one of these books to explore the magical island, learn what happened to Wendy, or maybe even fall in love with a pirate.

Books-booksandmorebooks' book recommendations:
  • The Harry Potter series - J.K Rowling
  • Anna and the French Kiss, Lola and the Boy Next Door, Isla and the Happily Ever After - Stephanie Perkins
  • The Diviners - Libba Bray
  • Fangirl - Rainbow Rowell
  • Eleanor & Park - Rainbow Rowell
  • The Fault in Our Stars - John Green
  • Paper Towns - John Green
  • Wonder - R.J. Palacio
  • The Infernal Devices trilogy - Cassandra Clare
  • The Book Thief - Markus Zusak
  • The Little Broomstick - Mary Stewart
  • Ways To Lie Forever - Sally Nicholls
  • The Perks of Being a Wallflower - Stephen Chbosky
  • The Mortal Instruments series - Cassandra Clare
  • Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children - Ransom Riggs
  • To Kill A Mockingbird - Harper Lee
  • Struck by Lightning - Chris Colfer
  • Divergent trilogy - Veronica Roth
  • New Girl & Here Lies Bridget - Paige Harbison
  • Wintergirls - Laurie Halse Anderson
  • 13 Little Blue Envelopes - Maureen Johnson
  • the Edge Chronicles - Paul Stewart
  • Huntress of the Sea - Alan Temperley
  • Dolphin Island - Arthur C. Clarke
  • Thirteen Reasons Why - Jay Asher
  • Peter Pan in Scarlet - Geraldine McCaughrean
  • Matilda - Roald Dahl
  • Half Bad - Sally Green
  • Elsewhere - Gabrielle Zevin
  • Let It Snow - John Green, Maureen Johnson, Lauren Myracle
  • Dash & Lily’s Book of Dares - David Levithan & Rachel Cohn
  • Charlotte’s Web - E.B. White
  • What Katy Did - Susan Coolidge 
  • The Children of the Red King - Jenny Nimmo
  • Looking For Alaska - John Green
  • The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time - Mark Haddon
  • The Hunger Games trilogy - Susan Collins
  • The Faraway Tree series - Enid Blyton
  • Dear John - Nicholas Sparks
  • The Last Song - Nicholas Sparks
  • Carrier of the Mark - Leigh Fallon
  • The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight - Jennifer E. Smith
  • the Uglies series - Scott Westerfeld 
  • the House of Night series - P.C Cast
  • The Great Gatsby - F. Scott Fitzgerald
  • The Woman in Black - Susan Hill
  • Mr Penumbra’s 24 Hour Bookstore - Robin Sloane
  • Attachments - Rainbow Rowell 
  • the Wind on Fire trilogy - William Nicholson 
  • The Invention of Hugo Cabret - Brian Selznick
  • Every Day - David Levithan
  • Will Grayson, Will Grayson - John Green & David Levithan
  • Amy & Roger’s Epic Detour - Morgan Matson
  • Since You’ve Been Gone - Morgan Matson
  • Second Chance Summer - Morgan Matson
  • We Were Liars - E Lockhart
  • Landline - Rainbow Rowell
  • Wicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West & Son of a Witch - Gregory Maguire
  • The Casual Vacancy - J.K. Rowling
  • The Shades of London series - Maureen Johnson
  • The Wizard of Oz - L. Frank Baum
  • Just One Day - Gayle Forman
  • If I Stay - Gayle Forman
  • The Darkest Minds - Alexandra Bracken
  • The Cuckoo’s Calling - Robert Galbraith
  • Dorothy Must Die & The Wicked Will Rise - Danielle Paige
  • Shatter Me - Tahereh Mafi
  • A Little Something Different - Sandy Hall
  • Afterworlds - Scott Westerfeld
  • Me and Earl and the Dying Girl - Jesse Andrews
  • The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry - Gabrielle Zevin
  • Magonia - Maria Dahvana Headley 
  • I’ll Give You The Sun - Jandy Nelson
  • We All Looked Up - Tommy Wallach

(There’s also now a link to this on my ‘about me’ page in case anyone wants this in the future. I’ll keep adding to it, I promise!)

anonymous asked:

Would you recommend us some -fiction- books?

((OOC: You ask and ye shall receive. I’m just going to be dissecting my book shelf by genre and in the order they appear, so prepare yourself: 

Fantasy/Dystopian: Narnia Series, Eragon Series, Atherton by Patrick Carman, The Hunger Games, Divergent Series, Enders Game, Peter Pan in Scarlet by Geraldine McCaughrean, Lockdown by Alexander Gordon Smith, Un Lun Dun by China Miéville, Watership Down by Richard Adams, The Land of Elyon Trilogy by Patrick Carman, Pretty Monsters by Kelly Link, Brave New World, Never Let Me Go by Kazoo Ishiguro, The Giver, 1984, V for Vendetta and the Maze Runner. 

Young Adult: The Perks of Being a Wallflower, The Catcher in the Rye, Thirteen Reasons Why, The Sacred Lies of Minnow Bly by Stephanie Oaks, Prep by Curtis Sittenfeld, The Outsiders, The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time by Mark Haddon, The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian by Sherman Alexie, On The Road to Find Out by Rachel Toor,  It’s Kind of a Funny Story by Ned Vizzini, The Virgin Suicides by Jeffrey Eugenides (is this young adult, not sure), The Book Thief by Markus Zusak, The Wake Trilogy by Lisa McMann, and Every Day by David Levithan.

Other Fiction w/o Genre: The Road by Cormac McCarthy, Gone Girl, The Long Walk by Stephan King, The Secret History by Donna Tart, The Five People You Meet In Heaven by Mitch Albom, Wuthering Heights, What is the What by David Eggers, Middle Sex by Jeffrey Eugenides, House of Leaves, Blasphemy by Sherman Alexie, We Live in Water by Jes Walter, Wild by Cheryl Strayed and To the Lighthouse by Virginia Woolf. 

Here is my nonfiction book list for fun because I love,

Personal Nonfiction! :The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks, The Undertaking by Thomas Lynch, Slouching Towards Bethlehem by Joan Didion, Misunderstood by Rachel Toor, Between The World and Me by Ta-Nehisi Coates, The Freedom Writers, Citizen by Claudia Rankine, I Feel Bad About my Neck by Nora Ephron, The Beautiful Struggle by Ta-Nehisi Coates, The Still Point of the Turning World by Emily Rapp, Anne Frank, Mountains Beyond Mountains by Tracy Kidder, Notes of a Native Son by James Baldwin, Drinking A Love Story by Caroline Knapp, The Unspeakable by Megan Daum, Autobiography of a Face by Lucy Grealy, and Truth and Beauty by Ann Patchett.

I didn’t love all of the books here but I certainly loved most of them. If you have questions about any specific books and whether they’re worth a read (they all are) or whether its what you’re looking for. Let me know! ))

It’s true: Everyone needs a reason to stay alive – someone who justifies your existence. Someone who loves you. Not beyond all reason. Just loves you. Even just shows an interest. Even someone who doesn’t exist, or isn’t yours. No, no! They don’t even have to love you! They just have to be there to love! Target for your arrows. Magnetic Pole to drag on your compass needle and stop it spinning and tell you where you’re heading and…Someone to soak up all the yearning. That’s what I think.
—  Geraldine McCaughrean, The White Darkness 
It’s true: Everyone needs a reason to stay alive – someone who justifies your existence. Someone who loves you. Not beyond all reason. Just loves you. Even just shows an interest. Even someone who doesn’t exist, or isn’t yours. No, no! They don’t even have to love you! They just have to be there to love! Target for your arrows. Magnetic Pole to drag on your compass needle and stop it spinning and tell you where you’re heading and…Someone to soak up all the yearning. That’s what I think.
—  The White Darkness by Geraldine McCaughrean

The air was crammed with snowflakes–as though a goose-feather pillow had burst. Without the red frock coat, Peter was gibbering cold, and he struggled to pull the white tie from round his throat.

“A match, Ravello. Let us get this fire lit and talk after!” called Curly.

“A match, Ravello. Quickly!” said Tootles. “Aren’t you cold too?”

“What’s the little word that gets things done?” said the Ravelling Man, his voice high and mocking. Then the explorers wanted to send him to Nowhereland and never have to speak to him again.

“Please,” said Wendy coldly.

“Please,” said Curly.

“Please,” said John.

Ravello gave a tug on the rope, and brought the wheeled sea chest back to his feet like a chastened pet. He opened its lid and took out a box of lucifers, shaking it gently: a sound like a baby’s rattle. Only one match left. “Tell me again, what’s the little word?”

“Please!” said Tootles.

“Please!” chorused the Twins.

(“Ah! Now I see!” said Peter to himself, puzzle solved.)

“PLEASE!” said all but Peter.

“WRONG,” said Ravello, striking the match against the stubble of his unshaven jaw. The flare lit up his face. It was a wretched face, scarred by his time in the crocodile, scarred by passing time where no time should have passed. Only the aristocratic tilt of his head and the fire in his bleached-brown eyes proved that Pan’s deadliest foe, Captain James Hook was still living within.

“Let me think now. What is the little word that gets things done? Ah yes. Now I remember….” Then he blew out the match and said,

“DIE!”

—  Geraldine McCaughrean, Peter Pan in Scarlet (2006).