• Issue 103 - February 2009

    01 February 2009


    Welcome, one and all, to the second Shanville Monthly of 2009!! It's shivery outside, with even colder weather predicted, but all is warm and cozy inside the world of Darren Shan!! After a strange Christmas, I've been hard at work -- you can follow my day-to-day routines by checking out my blog. January was a quiet time for me in publishing terms, but that will all change over the next few months -- first, in the UK and Ireland, the Saga of Darren Shan will be re-released with the new covers (they're due to hit shops within the first week of the month), swiftly followed by my next books for adults, and then Wolf Island in the States and elsewhere, and Dark Calling in the UK. You can find out more about those by reading through this month's collection of news articles. There's also info about a TV show I'll be appearing on, a signing in London, photos from the Cirque Du Freak movie set, and... a Christmas card?!?!? Read on to learn more!!


    Well, they do say better late than never!! I normally post a Christmas card in the December issue of the Shanville Monthly, but I forgot it this year -- whoops!!! Then, when it came to the January issue, I was in London, without access to the card!! But here it is at long, LONG last!!!!! Click on the thumbnail photo above for a larger version of the card, as well as to read the inside, which contains a handwritten message that I wrote for you guys, along with a printed poem that I wrote especially for Christmas!!


    My second D B Shan novel for adult readers, Hell's Horizon, goes on sale on March 1st, but will probably start popping up in book stores at some point in February, so keep an eye out for it, especially towards the end of the month! This is the second book of The City trilogy, but it's actually not so much a sequel to the first book as an equal -- it's set at the same time as Procession of the Dead, and tells a completely different story. As such, it can be read independently of the first book, although I do recommend you read Procession first if you haven't already. The third book will be released in March 2010 and it will tie together the other two stories.

    You can find out more about the book later in the month by checking out the D B Shan web site by CLICKING HERE (I'll be updating it with HH info closer to March). The book should be available in most book stores, although not in the same section as my Darren Shan books, so you might have to ask the staff to help you find it!! Alternatively, if you want to order the book from Amazon, CLICK HERE.


    As some of you might recall, a few months ago I filmed a couple of episodes for a TV panel show called The Book Quiz, which airs on BBC4 in the UK. The series began on Monday January 26th at 8.30pm on BBC4 with one of the shows that I was in. Unfortunately, I lost in that show, so if you missed it, maybe that's for the best!! However, the next show that I appear in is due to air on Monday February 16th at 8.30pm on BBC4, and I fared rather better in this one -- so make a note in your diary to watch it!! I had great fun filming the shows, and highly recommend the series, especially if you're a lover of books. Please note, the date of the second show is NOT set in stone, and it's possible it might be changed -- if so, I'll send out an email to everyone to let you all know. Also, BBC4 usually repeats the show at different times over the next few days after the orginal goes on air, and it's also available on the BBC4 web site for a week -- but only if you live in the UK.


    As I revealed here a few months ago, all 12 books of The Saga of Darren Shan are re-branded and relaunched in the UK and Ireland in Feburary, with what I like to refer to as Third Generation (or 3G) covers!!! The new 3G covers are VERY different to the old ones. We've kept a few elements, such as the skull motif, but even those have been re-jigged and given a new breath of life. The colours have been coded so that each of the trilogies has its own colour, to bind the three books in that trilogy together. The spines have been coordinated, so if you buy all twelve books and line them on on your shelf at home, you can see one single design (along with some writing -- I'm not saying what it is!!) running across the spines. And, most intriguingly of all, each cover features one or more of the characters from the series!! I've added pictures of all 12 of the new covers to my web site, so you can check them out and get an idea of what they look like by CLICKING HERE. The books look and feel a whole lot more impressive in the flesh than they look on the screen, but this will at least give you a very nice taste of what to expect!!! The books are all being released at the same time in the UK and Ireland, near the start of the month, so look out for them in your local book store and let me know what you think!!


    I'm delighted to announce that I'm going to be doing a public signing in London in February to celebrate the release of the new editions of The Saga of Darren Shan (i.e. the books with the new covers). This will be my only public signing event in the UK until May, when Dark Calling is released. It will also be the first time I've ever signed any of the new editions of the books -- so if you get to the front of the line, you will be the first person in the world to ever have one of the new editions signed!!!!

    The signing will be held at 3.00pm on Saturday February 7th, at the Tales On Moon Lane book shop, at 25 Half Moon Lane, Herne Hill, London SE 24 9JU. The Herne Hill rail station is just a very short walk away (it serves London Victoria, as well as many other places, on the Southeastern Line -- please note that I think the First Capital Connect line will not be in service that weekend). Or you can get a bus to Herne Hill from many parts of London -- CLICK HERE for bus map and info. And Brixton Tube is, I think, the nearest tube station, although you'd probably need to hop a bus from there as it's quite a long walk!

    As always at my signings, I will be happy to sign as many books as customers buy in the shop or bring from home. Obviously I'll be keen to sign copies of the new editions, but if you want to bring copies of the old editions from home (or copies of the Demonata books), that's no problem at all. Also, the session is due to run from 3.00pm to 4.00pm, but of course I'll stay as long as I need to, in order to sign books for everyone who turns up. It's never possible to accurately predict how long I'm going to be at a store, but as a guideline, the average time on the last tour was two and a half hours!!! But, if you want to be safe, you should get to the shop before 4.00pm. I hope to see lots of you there!!!!!

    The phone number for the store is 020 7274 5759, and the web site can be found HERE.

    EYE 2 EYE

    Last October, I appeared on a TV show in Ireland called Eye 2 Eye, along with fellow authors John Boyne and Ruth Gilligan, to discuss books and writing. You can now view the show online by CLICKING HERE. I really enjoyed filming this, and we covered a lot of ground in a very short period of time, so I highly recommend it (a) for anyone interested in my books, and (b) for anyone just interested in writing. Please note, when I was watching it online, it cut out a bit before the end of the programme.


    At last, after a VERY long wait, photos of the movie set and some of the cast have emerged on YouTube!!! These were taken by someone who worked as an extra on the film, which I think makes them even more interesting, as they're shots from an insider's point of view!! Most of the shots are of extras or people with small roles on the film, but there are a few pics of some of the principal cast, along with some fascinating looks at the set. If you want to see the photos individually, you can check them out on his MySpace page by CLICKING HERE. Make sure you leave some nice comments for him if you visit!!! Alternatively, a fan of the books living in Germany has made a video clip of the photos and set them to music -- if you want to check out that version, CLICK HERE.

    By the way, I still have not been told a release date for the movie. I know that you can find all sorts of dates on IMDB and other web sites, but my advice is to ignore all of the rumours, as they're probably misleading. As soon as Universal decide on a date, they will tell me and I will post the news here. Until then, treat any "release date exclusives" with extreme suspicion!!!!


    I've updated the Interview section of my web site, adding lots of new interviews with, as well as articles about, me. Make sure you scroll down to the Odds & Sods part of the page for some fascinating little nuggets!!! To access all of the new interviews (and a whole load of old ones), CLICK HERE.


    There's an interesting interview with the actor Michael Cerveris online, which you can find by CLICKING HERE. He mostly talks about his theatrical work, but there's a brief mention of Cirque Du Freak towards the end, which explains a bit about how he set about tackling the role of Mr Tiny in the movie...


    I've added several new reviews of Death's Shadow to my site, mostly from the USA. To access them, CLICK HERE.


    As I said above, I'm doing a signing this month in London. In May I will be touring in the UK and Norway, and in July I will be doing an event in West Cork. More details of these and other events to follow in a later issue of the Shanville Monthly -- so keep checking back!!


    Fans who read my blog will know that I'm a big fan of an Irish band called Fred, and I try to go to see them live every time they play in Limerick. Well, the good news for people living in London or nearby is that they're doing a gig in Central London on Saturday February 7th (the same day that I'm signing in London!!), at The Borderline, which is just off Charing Cross Road -- for venue details, CLICK HERE. An inside source told me that the band expect to be hitting the stage around 9.00pm, so if you do decide to go, make sure you get there in time!! Fred play damn fine music, and are always great live, so if you live in London, and you like fab tunes, do try and get along to support them -- OR ELSE!!!!! To familiarise yourself with the world of Fred in advance, you can sample some of their ultra fine tunes on their MySpace page by CLICKING HERE.


    And that's it for February. I plan to do lots more writing and editing this month, and I'm looking forward to my signing in London on the 7th -- it's always exciting for me when I do a one-off event, as I can focus just on that single event, and not have to worry about keeping in shape for the next one!! I'll be back in March with all the latest news and updates, when I'll also be celebrating the release of Hell's Horizon. Until then, wrap up warm and take care!!! All my bloody best, Darren Shan x x x