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


RE: A Recent ReReading

Gods and Warriors

Croniques des Temps Obscurs

Dark Matter

Dark Matter

Nieuw boek deel idee

Thank you so much


Lincoln writes...

I have to email an author I like for a school project and I decided to choose you! I really liked a few of your books and am still currently reading them. You are very good at explaining what is happening and that is one of my favorite thing in books.

PS. Also props to your illustrator/illustrators!

Michelle Replies...

Dear Lincoln,

I'm delighted that you like my books, and that you find you can understand what is happening in them.  That's actually quite hard to do when one is writing a book, so I'm glad that I've succeeded.

Best wishes, Michelle Paver

Book Research

Katie writes...

Dear Michelle

I am writing to say I am doing a report on you and your books for my Nat 4 English and I was wondering if you could tell me a bit about your research for Chronicles of Ancient Darkness and about the different foods you tried when you were travelling? And how much it helped you write the series by having the experiences first hand.

My mum and I really enjoyed listening to Chronicles of Ancient Darkness in the car and I am currently doing a second listening through.

Thank you very much for your time


Michelle Replies...

Dear Katie,

Thanks for getting in touch, and I'm glad you've been enjoying Ian McKellen's magnificent reading of the books!  While I think it's enterprising of you to contact me for help with your homework, I have an idea that your teacher would prefer that you look up stuff yourself. You see, learning how to ferret out information is an important skill in itself; and I get the feeling that this may be partly why your teacher has given you this task to do.  (I know this as my sister is an English teacher with 30 years' experience.)

Having said that, here are a few pointers for you (and for anyone else doing homework on my books; please don't all write in!):

  • You'll find quite a lot about my research in the AUTHOR'S NOTE at the end of each book.
  • You will also find lots more on my websites, particularly I suggest you have a dig around in the Cave, and see what you can find.
  • Also you might want to take a look at my Youtube channel, as I've done lots of live streams, and often talked of my research.
  • As far as food goes, I'm pretty sure it's mentioned in the above; but just so you know, I particularly loved lingonberries, which I scooped up from the forest floor in Finland when I was doing my research for WOLF BROTHER.  This is why they are Wolf's favourite berries.
  • As regards WHY I do the research, it's to make the stories real.  It's as simple as that. I want you to feel that you are living the adventure with Torak, Renn and Wolf - and the best way to do that is to experience what they do.  (Within reason, that is!)
  • I hope that helps you somewhat - and good luck with your homework!  With best wishes, Michelle


Cara writes...

Hi Michelle,
I've been hearing all kinds of wonderful things about your work, but I have yet to read any of your books myself because they aren't available on Kindle. I'm disabled and cannot hold a physical book open for very long, so I have to do all my reading digitally. Is there any chance that your books will be available on Kindle anytime soon?

Thanks for your time,

Michelle Replies...

Dear Cara,

Many thanks for getting in touch.  I'm glad that you've heard good things about my books, and I can quite understand that you prefer reading digitally.  But I'm a bit puzzled that you haven't been able to get hold of them, as they are available on Kindle, and also as audiobooks on Audible (should you feel like listening instead).  I've just done a quick check on to make sure that I'm not misleading you, and the books were all there, present and correct, in Kindle and Audible. (Of course it may be that you're not in the UK, in which case I'm afraid I can be of less help, and I can only refer you to the list of my oversees publishers on my website; the best thing would be to contact the relevant publisher.)  However I do hope that you are soon able to access whichever of my books you like - and once again, thank you for getting in touch.

With best wishes, Michelle

Wolfbane for the US

Eileen writes...

Hello Michelle,

Thanks so much for the gift of Chronicles of Ancient Darkness! I was distressed to learn that my local library cannot order Wolfbane, as it has not been published in the US. Do you have plans to do so?

Michelle Replies...

Dear Eileen,

Thanks for getting in touch, and I'm sorry that you haven't been able to get hold of  WOLF BANE.  Your library is quite right, it hasn't been published in the US.  Nor has VIPER'S DAUGHTER, or  SKIN TAKER.  I'm afraid this is not under my control.  It's up to the publishers -  in this case, Harpercollins - to decide what they publish; and they took the decision not to publish the last three books (I don't know why).  If you and/or any other readers in the US want to, you could always write to them at their New York offices and ask them about this.  Otherwise, I can only suggest trying to get a copy of the UK edition by some online means, such as, perhaps, the book depository (although you may know of others, I am very far from being an expert on things online!).

Sorry I can't be more helpful.  Good luck and best wishes, Michelle

Comment on Skin Taker and Thank You!

Elias writes...

Hello! I’m a little late to reading Skin Taker, mainly because I didn’t want the COAD series to end after I’d finished it and Wolf Bane. This book series means a lot to me, I started reading it after a Swedish book store handed out samples of Chapter 1 of Wolf Brother and I was completely hooked and just had to know how it ended. You may enjoy hearing that if it wasn’t for you, I may never have started writing my own novel (the first draft is finished, still working on polishing it). I’m writing you to tell you that I listened to the audiobook of Skin Taker and in the first chapter, when the falling star is seen, the description is so vivid and strong that I actually got goosebumps! That’s never happened to me before, truly a testament to your writing (and of course Sir Ian McKellan’s excellent narration). Also, I’m the one with the cave painting tattoos, I’ve now got a reindeer, an elk, a bear, a wolf (I like to think it’s Wolf actually), and a lynx running down my arm, all based off of real cave paintings. I had the tattoos done by hand, which felt appropriate given the subject matter. Anyway, your writing is phenomenal and you make it very easy to picture what happens in my mind’s eye as I read (or listen). I hope you have a nice day and that you are well. Thank you for everything!

Michelle Replies...

Dear Elias,

It's great to hear from you again (I remember answering your comments/questions in some of my live streams), and I'm so pleased that you found the beginning of SKIN TAKER vivid.  I usually hate writing Chapter One, as it can be extremely difficult to know how to begin a story; but with SKIN TAKER, I knew how I would write that first chapter right from when I had the idea of the meteorite strike. So it was actually fun.  I'm also delighted that you enjoyed Ian's recording of the audiobook.  I think in these final books he has outdone himself.  Your cave-painting tattoos sound amazing.  And huge congratulations on finishing the first book of your own novel.  Personally, I loathe first drafts, and I much prefer re-writing.  I hope you enjoy it - and the best of luck with your writing in general!

Thanks for getting in touch.  Best wishes, Michelle

wolf brother

tuğçe writes...

Hi. My brother is huge fan of your book Wolf Brother. I want to ask if you can send a signed book of this serial. Thanks and have a nice day.

Michelle Replies...

Dear Tugce Gulpolat,

It's great to know that your brother is such a big fan of Wolf Brother.  I'm afraid I can't send a signed copy, because if I did it for you, I would have to do it for other readers, all over the world - and that would get so time-consuming that I wouldn't have time to write!  Sorry about that.  I hope your brother continues to enjoy the adventures of Torak, Renn and Wolf.  And he's lucky to have such a nice brother in you.  With best wishes, Michelle

Wolf Brother questions: Setting of book and wolf question

Aiyana writes...

Dear Michael,
I am a huge fan of yours and I’ve always wondered is there a specific place you describe when you talk about where Torak grew up in Wolf Brother, if so could you please tell me where because I love wolves and the forest so I really want to visit a place like that, and your books seemed perfect.
When you talk about wolf what type of wolf are you talking about? And have you ever met a wolf in person? If you have please could you tell me where as it is my dream to see one.
I have loved reading Wolf Brother and Spirit Walker and I can’t wait to read the others.

Michelle Replies...

Dear Aiyana,

I'm so glad you've been enjoying my books.  I set them in northern Scandinavia (that's northern Norway and Sweden), but I have changed the geography a bit, for instance, the mountains and rivers, so that in real life you won't find anything that corresponds exactly to the map of the Forest in the books.  (I explain this in more detail in the Author's Note at the end of each book.)  However if you just want to get the feel of Torak's Forest, northern Norway, Sweden or Finland would be a good place to go.

As regards wolves, Wolf is simply Canis lupus, ie a wolf, of the kind indigenous to Scandinavia.  I have indeed met wolves for my research many times over the years.  That was at the UK Wolf Conservation Trust near Reading (again, I mention this in the Author's Note) - but I'm afraid that the Trust is now closed to the public.  I don't know whether you live in England, but I believe there are a few places where you can see wolves  in England.  Best to Google them.  I don't know about other countries, but I'm aure there are some.  It would be great if you could get along to see some real wolves at close quarters, as they really are quite unlike dogs.  I certainly found it invaluable to see them close up.  They are incredibly charismatic creatures!

I hope this helps, and that before too long, you can get to see some wolves!

Best wishes, Michelle

Hello again!

Anne Sofie writes...

Thank you so much for answering my question on the last stream!
That particular evening I was feeling ill and quite depressed, and you have no idea how much it cheered me up to see my message pop up on the screen. Thank you 🙂

Right after the stream I of course had to sit down and sketch and I posted the resulting picture in The Museum.
Hope you like it, it was fun to work on!

Hope you and your family have been doing well over the summer, especially with the horrible heatwaves which have plagued Europe this year.

Michelle Replies...

Dear Anne Sofie,

Just a quick one to say that I'm very glad my mention of your question on the last live stream cheered you up - and thank you, too, for your gorgeous addition to The Museum!

I hope you can also stay cool, wherever you are. Here in London we're just about to undergo another heat wave.  I am looking forward to autumn.

Best wishes, Michelle

Wolf brother TV series

Stella writes...

Hi there, Michelle Paver.

I'm from Sweden. When I first read wolf brother, I was twelve. Now I am eighteen and I still get obsessed by these books. However I've got a question: Will there be a TV series? If so, when will it release date?

Michelle Replies...

Dear Stella,

I'm delighted that you still enjoy my books even now that you are older.  As regards a tv series, I can tell you that we have done a deal with a wonderful pair of producers, but that's as far as we've got.  This is normal for film or television development: first you do a deal with producers, then they try to raise money to make the film or series, find a screenwriter, get a script written, find a director, and so on.  This can take years - and is actually very difficult.  In fact, most film deals don't end up going into production - that is, actually getting made.  In the case of the WOLF BROTHER books, I've done about four or five separate film deals since I first wrote WOLF BROTHER back in 2004 - and none of them has yet resulted in a film!  This is just the way it goes.

All this is a long-winded way of saying that although I do currently have a deal for a tv series, we are still a very long way from starting filming, and have no idea whether it will actually come about. So, er, don't hold your breath!  However if there are any developments, you may be sure that I will announce it on my website.

I'm sorry I can't be more definite.

Best wishes, Michelle

Signings in Scotland?

Zoe writes...

Hi there
Just wondering if Michelle will be doing any signings in Scotland at all? Thanks

Michelle Replies...

Dear Zoe,

I'm afraid I won't be doing any signings this year in Scotland, and actually I've no plans for more signings this year - apart from the one at Westonbirt Arboretum on 27 August.  Sorry to disappoint you; but you see, I did quite a few signings earlier this year, when WOLF BANE came out - and now I need to get down to some writing!  Just so you know, any future signings will always be posted on my website.   Thanks for getting in touch,