Fairy Hill has been in my heart and mind for the longest time… perhaps even since I was a kid when I first read about the ‘Children of Lir’, selkies, and fairy rings. What I love about legends and mythology is the magic and mystery of things not being what they seem… This is a really important element in Fairy Hill.
However the main inspiration was a poem. I must have been about twelve when I first read The Stolen Child by W. B Yeats.
Come away, O human child!
To the waters and the wild
With a faery, hand in hand,
For the worlds more full of weeping
than you can understand .
I was immediately enchanted by it and the idea of a child being stolen away by the fairies to live with them forever… that enchantment has lasted most of my life.
Fairy Hill has always been there waiting for me to write it but the time had to be just right. That time was when the world went quiet and hushed and I couldn’t really see my family or friends or go anywhere but instead I could walk the fields and lakeside and beach of Fairy Hill step by step with Anna, my thirteen year old heroine, and feel her upset and anger about being sent to stay in Ireland with her Dad, who she is not very close to, as her mum goes away on honeymoon to South America with her new step-dad.
It is a summer of change as Anna, gets used to a new family and learns to ride and surf and discovers from Old Aunt Lily the family secrets of Fairy Hill with its legend of a fairy ring. Curious Anna begins to uncover the mystery of old house.
Sensing she is being watched Anna is soon caught between a world that is real and unreal and begins to realise that her little half- brother Jack is in danger. No one believes her except Daniel, the mysterious boy she meets down by the lake. It is Daniel who shows her the beauty of the woods and nature all around her and warns her she must take care for she and Jack are both at risk …
When Jack disappears… It is Anna who knows that he has been stolen and bravely goes to try and rescue her little brother from the Fairies, a dangerous and powerful foe…..