Paver-2234

Ask Michelle

Here are Michelle’s most recent answers to the questions and messages readers have submitted.

Latest Messages

A Recent ReReading

Chronicles of Ancient Darkness on Screen

Tour

RE: A Recent ReReading

Gods and Warriors

Croniques des Temps Obscurs

Dark Matter

Dark Matter

Nieuw boek deel idee

Thank you so much

A Recent ReReading

Evan writes...

Hi Michelle, when I was twelve-or-so years old, I wrote you a letter detailing my favourite characters and asking a few questions. I thought maybe, about fifteen years later, I’d do the same now.

I’ve recently (just this morning) finished reading the entire Wolf Brother series. I read books 1-6 as a child, though stubbornly refused to finish Ghost Hunter as I so desperately didn’t want the series to end. Here I am, now, 27 and somewhat less stubborn, and I’ve come up against something I haven’t felt since I was a kid - a desperate wish that the series wasn’t over! I devoured books when I was younger, but as I grew up, undiagnosed and thus unmedicated ADHD took away my ability to focus on reading for any length of time. I always knew I missed it, but I never realised how deep a hole it had left in my heart until I decided to start re-reading the CoAD as audiobooks.

Rereading the series as an adult has been incredibly refreshing, and exhilarating. I’ve found myself having to pull over on the drive to work and catch my breath at certain parts that have absolutely floored me. The ending of Spirit Walker... the section in Oath Breaker where... The ending of Wolfbane... - I know that gender doesn’t matter much when it comes to crying, but to see myself as a twenty seven-year-old man sobbing...

As someone who lost my father right around the time I finished reading the original series (...) felt raw, painful, uncomfortable - which, of course, is how these things do feel, don’t they?

Aside from gushing, which I hope you’ll pardon me for, I had a few questions - you mention in the author’s note of Wolfbane that the world of the CoAD is based on Scandinavia, which interests me - did you have specific influences for all/most of the clans in terms of their culture that extends past Scandinavia? One could draw relatively understandable comparisons between the Wolf Clan and some Native American tribes, what with their tanned skin and high cheekbones; the Ice Clans have some - I think - quite obvious Inuit influence, as well.

I also wondered, and you may not wish to delve into politics, which is perfectly fine - did you receive any pushback with regard to (...)

To sign off, I simply wanted to express thanks again - for a final time, I promise - for reigniting that fire in me. A really good book, or indeed a good series, can make a world of difference, and as someone who adores writing and hasn’t had the time to delve into it recently, the CoAD have inspired me to finally sit down and start typing away again.

Apologies for the length! May the guardian run/fly/swim and suchforth with you.

Michelle Replies...

Dear Evan, thank you so much for getting in touch. Here's the reason for the delay: as your original message of 30 April contained some very big spoilers, I couldn't post it on my website, so when I answered it on 1 May (and I did, at length), I got my agent to email you, rather than posting it in the usual way.  Clearly you never got that email - or  those we re-sent, twice, this week.  So now we've gone to some lengths to remove the spoilers from your message - hence this post!

With that out of the way: Thank you so much for your very moving message - and there's no need to apologise for  its length, either.  I'm so glad that re-visiting Torak's world has helped re-connect you to reading, and that Ian's magnificent recordings did the trick.  I was also fascinated to learn which bits you found particularly moving and/or shocking. The scene you mentioned from Oathbreaker was one I found very satisfying to write. That might sound odd, but as a writer it's great when you realize you can achieve a strong emotional effect in a scene because of feelings which you've laboured to depict over several books; in this case, Renn's love for her bow.

Concerning my influences for the different clans, you're correct in that the White Foxes are heavily influenced by the Inuit.  And I've drawn a lot on the indigenous cultures of the Pacific Northwest, such as the Haida and the Kwakiutl (more details are in the Author's Notes at the end of each book, particularly the last three).  And I've taken customs, attitudes and beliefs from the San of South Africa, the Ainu of Japan, the Indigenous Australians, and many more. Then I've tweaked them to suit the stories.

As for the Dark/Kujai storyline, I'm happy to say that I've not received or been aware of any negative pushback.  Instead I've had lots of generous comments and thanks from people in the LGBTQ+ community.  Seveal readers have also written rather wistfully to say that they wish they'd known that Dark was gay when they were younger, when Ghost Hunter first came out.  I wish that too, but in case you're wondering, although I'd always known that Dark was gay (and he was one of the first characters I thought of when I was originally planning the series), I found when I came to write Ghost Hunter that there simply wasn't room in the story to do this justice; and I didn't want to trivialise it by simply mentioning it.  So I was delighted when I had the idea for the final three books, because I knew that I could now develop Dark's arc properly.

I'm going to have to sign off and do some writing now.  Thank you again so much for writing.  I hope you continue to find pleasure and solace in reading - and as for your writing: go for it!  With very best wishes, Michelle


Chronicles of Ancient Darkness on Screen

Harry writes...

Hi Michelle,

My name is Harry, a 29 year old from London. I’ve only very recently discovered the Chronicles of Ancient Darkness series and it reignited my love of reading. What amazing imaginative stories captured from such a magical world within our own history. It was gripping from start to finish!

My question is, I know you’ve been trying to get a Wolf Brother to series or movie in the works. How is that going, can we expect to see something in film or TV from this incredible world?

Michelle Replies...

Dear Harry, I'm absolutely delighted that my books have reignitedy our love reading!  I wish I could say that a film or tv series is imminent, but I'm afraid that the latest project (Kindle/Lionsgate) isn't going to come off.  It certainly wasn't for want of trying on the part of the producers, but unfortunately  making a major tv series (or film) is so expensive and difficulty that it is very common for such projects not to get off the ground.  As and when there's any more positive news, however, you may be sure that I'll announce it on my website.  In the meantime, thanks again for getting in touch - and may the guardian run with you!  With best wishes, Michelle


Tour

Lauren writes...

Hi Michelle

I absolutely love your books especially the dark chronicles series and dark matter. FANTASTIC. It was because of you that got me into writing. Wondering when are you going to be touring? as i would love to come and meet my writing hero and i know many others would love to see you too.

Many thanks

Lauren

Michelle Replies...

Hello, Lauren.  It's so nice of you to get in touch, and I'm delighted that you've enjoyed my books!  As for touring or events, I'm afraid I've no plans to do any this year, mostly due to family demands.  I'm hoping that will change to some extent next year when RAINFOREST comes out, and of course as and when it does, details will be posted on my website.  In the meantime, I'd like to wish you the very best of luck with your own writing.  With best wishes, Michelle


RE: A Recent ReReading

Evan writes...

A few months ago I asked a question subjected "A Recent ReReading", and a little while afterwards I got an email saying my question had been replied to, but on the email the "Michelle replies" section was blank, and I haven't been able to find it on-site. I hope it's not annoying of me to chase this up, but I wanted to make sure I wasn't missing anything! All the beet.

Michelle Replies...

Hello, Evan.  I'm really sorry that you got a blank answer; I must have pressed the wrong key by mistake!  As records don't go back that far, would you mind repeating the question?  Again, my apologies.  Michelle


Gods and Warriors

Kay writes...

I'd like to say how much I enjoyed the Gods and Warriors series. It always seems underappreciated compared to the Wolfbrother series (which I also really enjoyed, incidentally)
In both series - but particularly G&W- the style of writing, the density of information and the creation of atmosphere were masterly.
I know the books are meant for children/teenagers but there is never anything patronising in them . I'm 65 and I get just as much out of the series as a 15 year old would ! Especially as I'm a keen amateur egyptologist ( loved The Crocodile Tomb...brilliant!)
My question is, will there be any more Audible recordings of G&W books? Toby Stephens made an excellent job of Book 1 and I would be delighted to collect the others .
Anyway, thank you for providing many enthralling hours .
Kay Cooper

Michelle Replies...

How very kind of you, Kay, and I'm so glad that you like Gods and Warriors!  I'm also delighted that you liked The Crocodile Tomb, as I particularly enjoyed writing it - having been, like you, an amateur egyptologist for years.  You're right that the series hasn't received as much attention as the Wolf Brother books, and  I've always thought that this may have something to do with the fact that they have different publishers.  I also agree that Toby Stephens gave a terrific reading of the first book.  Sadly, though, the publishers decided not to record any more.  I don't know why, and I do think it's a pity, but it can't be helped.  Still, at least they're still publishing the books!  Thank you so much for getting in touch. With very best wishes, Michelle


Croniques des Temps Obscurs

LAURENT writes...

Hello Madam, please can you help me; I can't find Tom 1 of Chroniques des Temps Obscures In French; thank you for your writing which takes us to periods where the sun lights up my moments or the desire to escape the monotony of the days that pass cordially Guy Calixte LAURENT

Michelle Replies...

Hello, Guy.  I'm so sorry that you can't find the first volume of Chroniques des Temps Obscures.  I'm afraid the only thing I can suggest is that you look for it on the internet, for example, on abe.com or one of the other websites that sells secondhand books - or else write to Hachette, the publishers.  Sorry I can't be of more help - and bonne chance!  With best wishes, Michelle


Dark Matter

Helen writes...

I’m just back from a trip to Svalbard, all because I read and loved Dark Matter a couple of years ago. (I bought all my family a copy too.) Notice I went when it’s 24 hour daylight, not winter 😂.

Michelle Replies...

Dear Helen, I'm so very glad that you've been to Svalbard!  And of course I'm delighted that you enjoyed Dark Matter.  Excellent choice to go in the summer. For one things there's lots more wildlife; and for another, it's rather less alarming.  I do hope you had a good time - and thanks so much for getting in touch.  With best wishes, Michelle


Dark Matter

Kris writes...

Hello! I just wanted to thank you for writing Dark Matter. It's probably the best book I've ever read! The writing style and pacing are absolutely perfect and it gave me chills down my spine that I haven't felt when reading horror stories since I was a child. I do not have a single bad thing to say about it.

I just felt compelled to send this after finishing an extremely disappointing horror novel about deep sea exploration and discovery. I found myself thinking, "I wish Michelle Paver wrote this instead" quite often while reading it, haha.

I look forward to any future horror novels of yours! Have a nice day!

Michelle Replies...

Thanks so much for that, Kris; I'm delighted that you enjoyed Dark Matter so much!  You might also enjoy my novel Thin Air, set on one of the highest mountains on earth - as well as Wakenhyrst, which is more of a Gothic novel, set in an old house in the fens.  And I've got a new one coming out next year, set in the rainforest, and called (surprise) Rainforest.  Again, thanks for giving me a lift at the start of what promises to be a hot day here in London.  With very best wishes, Michelle


Nieuw boek deel idee

Silene en Rosie writes...

Wij zijn Silene en Rosie, we zijn 12 jaar en wonen in Nederland. We zijn grote fan van de boeken van Torak en Wolf.
We hebben de serie Torak en wolf al veel keren gelezen en we willen vragen of u een nieuw boek wil maken van de serie.

We hadden zelf al een een paar ideetjes namelijk: in deel 6 schreef u dat er een woud achter de bergen was die Torak ging ontdekken, wij dachten dat het leuk zou zijn dat het woud een jungle is en dat een een panter, papagaaien, tijger, kikker stammen zijn. Er is een heerser over de drie stammen, de kikker, papagaaien en tijger stammen. Hij wil macht over de hele jungle. Torak, Renn, wolf, donkervacht en kiezel op pad gaan in de jungle. Torak gaat hout sprokkelen en wordt gevangen genomen door de panterstam. Wolf ging met kiezel weg om kiezel te leren jagen. Kiezel raakt kwijt en raakt bevriend met panters intussen hoort Renn Torak schreeuwen en gaat hem zoeken. Renn valt in een klif met donkervacht. Torak zit in een houten cel en zijn spullen worden van hem afgepakt en doorzocht door de pantermagiër. Die ziet de medicijn hoorn van zijn moeder. De pantermagiër denkt dan dat Torak hem heeft gestolen. Ze vraagt waar hij die van Daan heeft en dan antwoord Torak dat die van zijn moeder was. De pantermagiër laat Torak gelijk vrij en dan legt ze alles uit. De pantermagiër blijkt de moeder van zijn moeder te zijn. Zijn oma vertelt dat zijn moeder en zijn oma een hele erge ruzie hadden en dat zijn moeder was wegegaan van de panterstam en bij de stam van haar vader is gegaan de hertenstam. Kiezel was bij de panter, maar de panter moeder die bracht hem die acht bij de pantermagiër die naar Torak ging met kiezel. Torak zag hem en en riep wolf die bij Rip en Rek was.

Dat is wat wij nu hebben bedacht. Hopelijk vindt u het leuk om er een deel bij te maken! Zou u dat leuk vinden? Wij kijken ernaar uit. Alvast bedankt voor uw reactie!

Met vriendelijke groet,
Silene Duthler en Rosie van Mechelen.

Michelle Replies...

Dear Silene and Rosie, Thank you for your message.  I'm afraid I don't speak Dutch, and I don't know anyone who does (my mother is Belgian, but she's not  well enough to translate your message for me), so I couldn't follow all the details - but I gather that you've enjoyed the Torak and Wolf books, and I'm very glad about that.  Your idea for a new story seems to involve taking them to the jungle.  That's very imaginative - although it would take some doing to get them all that way!  Perhaps when you're older, you'll be able to enjoy the three later books I've written about Torak, Renn and Wolf - which are available in English, but sadly, haven't been translated into Dutch.  Thanks again for getting in touch.  With best wishes, Michelle


Thank you so much

Amanda writes...

My names Amanda and I have been a huge Chronicles of Ancient Darkness fan since elementary school. I found wolf brother in my school library and was hooked from the start. Before my question I just wanted to thank you for your stories, for feeding my niche interest in ancient worlds, getting me out into nature, but especially for Renn. Growing up she was really the first strong female character for me. I just love how her and torak are able to naturally bond and support each other. And throughout the story I wanted them to end up together,but that was never the main focus of their relationship so thank you for that. For making her a stand alone fierce , funny, and complex person. It's refreshing with your books that even though the characters are fictional I can see myself and people I know in them. My question though as I just finished wolfbane. Is had you always planned for Kujai to be Dark's mate? Or did it just progress while you were writing?. Im a gay woman so that moment when Kujai said the reason he hasn't found a mate was because he was waiting for him. I started getting emotional over it because this series means so much to me and that representation was so small ,but unexpected in the best way. I'm sorry this is a lot to read, but once again thank you for this world and can't wait to read what other worlds you may create.

Michelle Replies...

Dear Amanda, Thank you so much for your beautiful, heartfelt message.  I love what you say about Renn, as it's very much how I saw her from the start.  As for Dark and Kujai (bit of a spoiler, that, but I'll let it pass), Dark was in my mind from the very beginning, when I was planning the original series, but there was only space for him in what I then thought was the last book, Ghost Hunter.  And although I knew he was gay, there just wasn't room in that story to bring this out; and to try to cram it in would have trivialised it - so with regret I had to leave it out.  I was then really pleased when I had the idea for the final three books, as it gave me the chance to take Dark's character further. I didn't know with whom he would end up until Kujai made his appearence when I was planning Wolfbane; but I knew immediately where they were going, and I so enjoyed writing their scenes.  I'm delighted that you found them moving, as I did too when I was writing them.  Thanks again for getting in touch - and may the guardian run with you!  Best wishes, Michelle