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Thursday, 20 September 2012

Encyclopaedias keep novelist and Desert Island Guest Kate Forsyth busy

Today I am guesting at Historical Tapestry and my Desert Island Guest today is the fabulous Kate Forsyth.
I came across Kate when she was kind enough to review The Lady's Slipper on her website (here)

Kate Forsyth is the bestselling and award-winning author of more than twenty books, ranging from picture books to poetry to novels for both children and adults.

Her most recent book for adults is Bitter Greens, a retelling of the Rapunzel fairytale interwoven with the dramatic, true life story of the woman who first told the tale, the 17th century French writer, Charlotte-Rose de la Force.

Her most recent book for children is The Starkin Crown, a heroic fantasy adventure set in the magical world of Estelliana, a place of wild magic and terrifying monsters.
Kate's The Witches of Eileanan was named a Best First Novel of 1998 by Locus Magazine and her books have been published in 14 countries around the world, including the UK, the US, Russia, Germany, Japan, Turkey, Spain, Italy, Poland and Slovenia. She is currently undertaking a doctorate in fairytale retellings at the University of Technology, having already completed a BA in Literature and a MA in Creative Writing.

Kate is a direct descendant of Charlotte Waring, the author of the first book for children ever published in Australia, A Mother's Offering to her Children. She lives by the sea in Sydney, Australia, with her husband, three children, a rambunctious Rhodesian Ridgeback, a bad-tempered black cat, and many thousands of books.

Here are Kate's choices for survival on my Desert Island. Wow, those Encyclopaedias will take some reading through. I had a similar set as a child, full of pictures of antiquated diving bells, blurry comets and zoo animals.

“Back to Basics: A practical Guide to Old-Fashioned Self-sufficiency” – I’ve had it for years, but its packed full of information on things like creating energy from water, making yourself a loom, or baskets, or clay pots, and milking goats and keeping chickens.  Since I don’t know how to do anything like that, I’m sure it’ll come in useful.

The World of Wonder Children’s Encyclopedia – my favourite when I was a child. It’s packed full of fascinating articles on history, science, geography and so on – lots of happy browsing there.

 ‘The Lore of the Land: A Guide to England’s Legends from Spring-heeled Jack to the Witches of Warboys’ by Jennifer Westwood and Jacqueline Simpson – I’d choose this book because its enormously thick and enormously interesting, and full of tales and titbits. I could read one a day and still not have finished by the time I was rescued. 

Kate's book, Bitter Greens is out now in paper and e-book.
You can read a great interview with her here
Find out more on her official website.
 The Starkin Crown


  1. Bitter Greens sounds wonderful! Congratulations.

    I enjoyed your desert island choices and have to say that I'm glad I'm not the only one who picked a book from my childhood.

  2. Elizabeth Gayle FellowsThursday, 20 September, 2012

    Your novels look very interesting. Must delve into them... great web site.

  3. Hi Elizabeth, thanks for coming by and for the compliment. After Kate recommended the Lore of the Land I went straight out and bought it, and I have to say it is fascinating. when we go touring in our campervan it will be interesting to tie up some of the stories from the book with our travels. I think childhood books are so influential, I still treasure some of mine.