• Yorkshire Post | 09 October 2008 |

    Wolf Island - Darren Shan

    DARREN Shan is living his dream by writing the stuff of nightmares. But his staggering global fan base just can't get enough of it.The fresh-faced author has all but cornered the teenage fiction market with his extraordinary horror series', The Saga of Darren Shan, and The Demonata.

    His tales of vampires and demons have been inspired by the horror fiction read voraciously by the young Shan but are setting a new standard that has earned more than 10 million sales worldwide.

    In this OutLoud interview, Shan discusses his obsessions, the movie of his novel Cirque Du Freak, tackling real-life issues in fiction, and gives a reading from Wolf Island.

    Darren Shan, real name Darren O'Shaughnessy, lived in London until the age of six when he moved to Ireland with his family. Encouraged by his mother, a teacher, the young O'Shaughnessy became a voracious reader of all books and began making up stories from a young age.

    After university he spent two years working for a TV cable company back in Ireland. But, having continued to write throughout, he then set about becoming a full-time writer.

    His first book, Ayuamarca, was published by Orion in February 1999 under the name Darren O'Shaughnessy, and was followed by the sequel Hell's Horizon a year later. But the two adult novels were overshadowed by the success of a children's book published in between, under the name Darren Shan.

    Cirque Du Freak, the first of the Saga of Darren Shan series, was optioned by Warner Brothers and topped bestseller lists around the world. The series ended in 2004 with Sons of Destiny, and was followed by Lord Loss, the opener to The Demonata, in 2006. Wolf Island is the eighth book in the series which ends next year.

    Under the pen-name D. B. Shan, he is currently revisiting his adult trilogy, the first of which, re-titled Procession of the Dead, was published in March. Hell's Horizon and City of the Snakes are to follow in 2009 and 2010. Shan is also working on a one-off fantasy novel, due for publication in 2010, and a four book series based on the Saga character of Mr Crepsley.

    Shan still lives in Ireland and admits to being an obsessive book, music, art and movie fan.

    Wolf Island, £10.99, is published by HarperCollins, ISBN 978-000-726041-6

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