September 30, 2021

Michelle Paver: Author Online

Celebrated author, Michelle Paver, delivered a virtual author event to our enthusiastic readers from the Fryer Book Club on Wednesday 29th September, co-ordinated by our Librarian, Grace Ritchie.


The opportunity was presented by Authors Aloud, an organisation that aims to bring writers and students together enabling young people to experience the joy of reading. Through Authors Aloud many children have been able to access authors, poets, illustrators and story-tellers and build a relationship with books.


The Michelle Paver event gave students an insight into her latest Young Adult novel, ‘Skin Taker’, the new book in the successful Wolf Brother series, Chronicles of Ancient Darkness, set in the stone age. With bestsellers such as ‘Wolf Brother’, ‘Spirit Walker’ and ‘Soul Eater’ Michelle’s writing has captivated readers keen to find out more about the historical fantasy world inhabited by Torak, Renn and Wolf. As the friends battle against the soul eaters to retain control of their forest home they face many challenges and experience perilous adventures together.


Reflecting on the virtual nature of the event, Year 7 student and keen reader, Isabelle, commented “It was a pity that we didn’t get to meet Michelle in real life, but it was nice being able to listen from the library and cover my ears at all the spoilers without seeming rude. It was also nice because there was no travelling, so it was more relaxed, and it was interesting to get to have more time with Michelle and listen to what she had to say because I have never talked to an author about any book before even though I read so many different types of books.”


The talk covered Michelle’s inspiration and her initial research into the books, gave an introduction to her new novel before a reading from ‘Skin Taker’ and questions from the online audience.


Isabelle continued, “Michelle wasn’t what I expected I guess because I was really surprised by her devotion to her research and her determinedness to write a realistic story and uncover more about the lives of how people used to live. So far, I have only read up to number two – ‘Spirit Walker’ in the ‘Chronicles of Ancient Darkness’ series but I love how Michelle researched her story enough to write from Wolf’s perspective in such a way that you could get a glimpse into a wolf’s life. I also really like fantasy stories, so the idea of supernatural demons appealed to me. I also really like the details and reality of how harsh life was.”


Fellow Fryer, Annabel, added, “The Wolf Brother series seem really realistic, and Michelle definitely knew what she was doing. I haven’t read the books myself (yet) so I can’t give much more information on them. Overall, I enjoyed the virtual event a lot, but it was a bit disgusting when she talked about things like eating polar bear liver and (other people eating) eyes, also when she explained that you make leather by smearing its smashed brains on the animal’s skin, though I really liked how she really made an effort to make Wolf realistic and the bit she read out about the battle between Wolf, Torak and a bear.”


Grace commented, “The Fryers loved relaxing on the bean bags and listening to Michelle Paver introduce the Wolf Brother series. They especially enjoyed seeing all the artefacts that inspired the story, and learning all about how the characters of Torak and Wolf would have lived in prehistoric times.”


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