Ravaged giants rooted in primordial chalk
sleep now in this mild September light.
Where sheep crop the long
grass among the stones
old gods, unvanquished
linger at the edge of sight.
by Eileen Kernaghan
Wattle and Daub Books is pleased to announce
our upcoming release
Tales from the Holograph Woods:
Author of eight books of fiction, two-time winner of the Canadian SF Aurora Award for her novels Songs from the Drowned Lands(1983) and The Snow Queen (2000), Eileen has been quietly publishing startling gems of poetry in magazines and anthologies throughout the years. A selection of these was collected in the eighteen page chapbook The Dark Gardens of the Zodiac by Neville Books in 1999. This limited edition chapbook constitutes one section of the upcoming collection.
reviews of Tales from the Holograph Woods:
Kernaghan practises her craft with a skill and sensitivity that does credit to the genre. Her unmistakable voice provides a subtle, unifying under-note that runs throughout this diverse collection.
—Mary E. Choo, author of Dream Tribes
With this collection, Kernaghan inhabits that strange netherworld, astraddle both yin and yang, one foot in the fierce daylight of knowledge and reason, the other in the dark mysteries of myth-ologies, the absyssal wood—whose “shadow is always there/dark subtext, dissonance…” Her sly words, fevered dream visions and lurking rhythms dance the reader a merry chase down peculiar paths, where there is sometimes only a “thin light/shining a long way off/like a summons.” Poetry should always, to some degree, be about the uses (and misuses) of enchantment, and Kernaghan has touched something deep and visceral with these verses. You will read them once, then, in the middle of the night, wake suddenly, shivering, and need to read them again. Eileen Kernaghan neither lights a single candle nor curses the darkness—she swallows it whole and then sets it on fire.
—Sandra Kasturi, author of The Animal Bridegroom
…creates worlds where magic and myth sing together in dreamlike harmony. There is madness here, mixed with insight, leaving the reader bewitched and transformed, looking both outwards and inwards with strangely enhanced clarity.
—Marcie Tentchoff, author of Through The Window: A Journey To The Borderlands Of Faerie
reviews of Light Like a Summons:
…the poetry of Eileen Kernaghan (shows both) poetic capability and ease. She projects a living imaginative world, and she can declare her derivations and show them to be absorbed.
—George Woodcock, BC Bookworld
Eileen Kernaghan is perhaps the most consciously intertextual of the poets in Light Like a Summons.The voices of many writers – Blake, Yeats, Thomas, Stevens and Plath – are echoed in her poems, as are the mythologies and philosophies to which she turns in her search for meaning not confined to the corners of present time and space.
—Alexander M. Forbes, Canadian Literature
Echoing through many of (Kernaghan’s) poems is a conception of nature transformed, being viewed through new windows or new eyeglasses…. Kernaghan is an author to watch.
—Mark Rich, The Magazine of Speculative Poetry
The work of Eileen Kernaghan effectively brings together the individual strengths of the other four writers (in Light Like a Summons) with its sensitivity, wit, large vision, and command of verse technique.
Lines Written on Learning the Universe
Exists because of a Slight Asymmetry in
the Matter/AntiMatter Mirror
Time, space, constellations, planets
small scratches in the seamless
mirror of the glass.
EILEEN’S LATEST BOOK, WILD TALENT: A NOVEL OF THE SUPERNATURAL, is available through Thistledown Press.
The year is 1888. Sixteen year old Scottish farmworker Jeannie Guthrie fears she has accidentally killed her ne’er-do-well cousin George, and flees in panic to London. Drawn reluctantly into the world of the occult, and seemingly haunted by her cousin’s vengeful ghost, Jeannie must learn to control her mysterious power to in order to survive.
“The greatest strength of Wild Talent is its vivid portrayal of the tumultuous times in which Jeannie lives. The drudgery of rural poverty, the decadence of absinthe-soaked artists, the glamour of the Paris world’s fair, and the spiritual debates among London ’s occult circles are all handled with skill. When I finished Wild Talent I felt that I’d paid a visit to the late 19th century, that I’d been right there with Jeannie all along.”
—Kelly Lasiter, Fantasy Literature
“ a charming bildungsroman and an intriguing historical look at Victoria occultists and French decadents, with cameos by figures such as Arthur Conan Doyle and Paul Verlaine.”
—Carolyn Cushman, Locus
“If you enjoy well-written historical fiction, with particular reference to spiritualism, this is a book for you. Alexandra David and Madame Blavatsky were actual people, who led fascinating lives.”
“This late Victorian historical is a vivid exciting tale that takes readers into a strange dominion filled with artists, spiritualists and ethnologists… Basing (the story) on the real 1888 London Journal of Alexandra ((David Neel), Eileen Kernaghan provides her bewitched fans with a great late nineteenth century tale.”
“Acclaimed Canadian author Eileen Kernaghan … is known both for her painstaking historical research and her interest in diverse cultural and historical manifestations of spirituality. Wild Talent is no exception.
—Ursula Pflug, The New York Review of Science Fiction
“Wild Talent describes the setting and feeling of this time period very well. The background information …is not obviously superimposed on the plot, and the character development is excellent. The reader can see Jeannie’s growth from a scared farm worker to a knowing, mature woman.” Recommended.
- Silver Medal Award for original fantasy from West Coast Review of Books, 1980, for Journey to Aprilioth;
- Canadian Science Fiction and Fantasy (CASPAR) Award, 1984, for Songs from the Drowned Lands: A Novel of High Fantasy and in 1990, for short story, “Carpe Diem”;
- Canadian Science Fiction & Fantasy Award (Aurora) forThe Snow Queen 2001;
- Canada 124 Medal for community arts activism, 1992.
- Shortlisted for the Sheila Egoff Prize in Children’s Literature, 2005, for The Alchemist’s Daughter.
- Wild Talent: A Novel of the Supernatural, shortlisted for 2009 Sunburst Award.
Tales from the Holograph Woods
by Denise Dumars