Related to: 'Empire of Grass'

Julie Sarkissian blogs about the problems facing the protagnist of her debut novel, DEAR LUCY

Something's Wrong With Lucy - But What?

Lucy is different – that much is clear. She speaks like a child, doesn’t recognize social boundaries, flies into rages, and treasures rotten food. Her cognition is impaired, her vocabulary is very limited and she cannot read or write. But what – precisely – is wrong with her is left up to the reader. Lucy is the protagonist of my novel, DEAR LUCY, and from the first sentence of the book I ever wrote it was obvious that Lucy was cognitively different. The way Lucy describes herself is as “missing too many words.” Her mother calls her “difficult.” Readers of early drafts of the book had a few theories as to Lucy’s condition; autism, Williams Syndrome, Down Syndrome. But Lucy’s mother has kept her from going to school and Lucy has never seen a doctor. So in the fictional reality of the book there is no official diagnosis. But as the novel progressed I wondered – should I have one? I was torn. If Lucy was presenting enough symptoms to point to a real condition, was I ignoring the obvious not to fold that condition into my development of her character? Was it insensitive of me to allude to aspects of certain real, life-altering conditions but not assign a specific condition to Lucy? I worried about appropriating aspects of serious conditions without treating those conditions with proper respect and acknowledgement. And though any clinical diagnosis would probably not be explicit in the novel, I wondered if I would be ignoring an opportunity to bring attention to a real disorder when people asked me about Lucy’s condition, the way The Curious Incident of The Dog in the Night-time did for autism. On the other hand, I had concerns that if I chose a diagnosis for Lucy, I would be ascribing to her qualities that she wouldn’t have otherwise presented. Lucy had her own will over my writing and over the novel. I didn’t want to yoke Lucy’s expression by keeping her behavior and abilities consistent with a clinical condition. Accuracy would also become a critical issue if Lucy’s condition was named. Ultimately I chose not to diagnose Lucy, though I worry the artistic freedom provided by that decision comes at the price of being judged for being too liberal with my treatment of cognitive disorders. Now that publication is a few months away, I am apprehensive of how my treatment of Lucy’s cognitive limitations will be judged. I have yet to talk to a reader who has a learning different child, or works with learning different people, and that conversation is one I will be honored, and not a bit anxious, to have.

Hodder & Stoughton

The Witchwood Crown

Tad Williams
Authors:
Tad Williams
Hodder & Stoughton

Shadowmarch

Tad Williams
Authors:
Tad Williams
Hodder & Stoughton

Shadowplay

Tad Williams
Authors:
Tad Williams

Darkness has fallen on the lands of the sun as an army of misshapen fey spill out from beyond the Shadowline. At their head is Yasammez, dark creature of nightmare. A furtive bargain was struck at the gates of Southmarch and the castle was spared, but centuries of enmity will not be so easily appeased. Meanwhile Barrick, heir to Southmarch and cursed with madness, has crossed the Shadowline into the realm of his people's ancient enemy. There are stranger things than death here - stranger and older. Much further south, shadow is also falling over the reign of the Autarch, god-king and supreme ruler. Quinnitan, junior wife, must flee the royal household or die, her greatest secret as yet hidden even from herself. Ancient blood flows through her veins and she will become a unique weapon in the fight against her greatest terror. And beyond the ken of all but a chosen few, the gods are awakening and the world is changing ...

Hodder & Stoughton

Shadowrise

Tad Williams
Authors:
Tad Williams
Hodder & Stoughton

Shadowheart

Tad Williams
Authors:
Tad Williams
Hodder & Stoughton

The War of the Flowers

Tad Williams
Authors:
Tad Williams

A masterpiece of the imagination, THE WAR OF THE FLOWERS is a truly epic novel which once again pushes the boundaries of fantasy fiction into new and unexplored territory. In the great city, in the dimly lit office of an impossibly tall building, two creatures meet. Gold changes hand, and the master of the House of Hellebore gives an order: 'War is coming. The child must die.' In our own world, a young man discovers a manuscript written by his great uncle. It seems to be a novel - a strange fairy tale of fantastic creatures and magical realms. But it is written as a diary ... as if the events were real ... as if his uncle had journeyed to another world. For the young man, the fantasy is about to become reality.

Hodder & Stoughton

City of Golden Shadow

Tad Williams
Authors:
Tad Williams
Hodder & Stoughton

River of Blue Fire

Tad Williams
Authors:
Tad Williams
Hodder & Stoughton

Mountain of Black Glass

Tad Williams
Authors:
Tad Williams
Hodder & Stoughton

Sea of Silver Light

Tad Williams
Authors:
Tad Williams

Bestselling author Tad Williams broke new ground in 1996 with his wonderfully imaginative novel CITY OF GOLDEN SHADOW: OTHERLAND BOOK 1. An incredibly complex and detailed virtual reality, Otherland is home to the wildest dreams and darkest nightmares of its users and creators. The conspiracy threatens to sacrifice our Earth for the promise of this far more exclusive place. And, somehow, Otherland is claiming the Earth's most valuable source, its children. Now, in SEA OF SILVER LIGHT: OTHERLAND 4, Tad Williams' epic saga reaches a magnificent conclusion.

Hodder & Stoughton

The Dragonbone Chair

Tad Williams
Authors:
Tad Williams

Kitchen-boy Simon is bored, restless and fourteen years old - a dangerous combination. It seems, however, that his life has just taken a turn for the better when he's apprenticed to his castle's resident wizard. As Simon's learning to read and write under Doctor Morgenes' tutelage, forces greater than he could possible imagine are gathering: forces which will change Simon's life - and his world - forever. Following the death of Good King John, Osten Ard is plunged into civil war as his sons battle for control of the fabled Dragonbone Chair - the country's throne as well as the symbol of its power. Simon is forced to flee the only home he has ever known, a journey which will test him beyond his worst nightmares. With THE DRAGONBONE CHAIR, Tad Williams introduced readers to the incredible fantasy world of Osten Ard and kicked off the beloved, internationally bestselling series Memory, Sorrow and Thorn.

Hodder Paperbacks

Stone of Farewell

Tad Williams
Authors:
Tad Williams

Following a brutal civil war, Osten Ard has been crushed under the rule of the two villainous High Kings. A single hope remains: if the rebels can find the three swords of legend - Memory, Sorrow and Thorn - they might be able to bring the Storm King and evil King Elias down. Once but a humble kitchen-boy, Simon is now Simon Snowlock, dragonslayer and bearer of the mythical sword Thorn. But Simon is more alone than ever before: his friends have been imprisoned and his liege lord, Prince Josua, has been exiled. And the Storm King may also be in possession of one of the swords... A single chance remains: if Simon can deliver Thorn to Joshua and lead his followers to the Stone of Farewell, the rebels may be able to muster the forces necessary to rise up against Elias and the Storm King. But no one knows where the Stone of Farewell is. Or, indeed, what it is... In STONE OF FAREWELL, Tad Williams sets his characters against impossible odds - and proves that the beloved, internationally-bestselling DRAGONBONE CHAIR was no fluke, but one of the greatest fantasy novels of all time.

Hodder Paperbacks

To Green Angel Tower: Storm

Tad Williams
Authors:
Tad Williams

In order for the Storm King can cement his power over Osten Ard, he must find and defeat the rebel forces massing against him. But the rebels, led by the exiled Prince Josua, have rallied at the Stone of Farewell and are ready to fight the Storm King with every power they can muster. The key to their victory lies in finding the third sword of legend, Memory - but the sword has been lost for ages.Lost, that is, until Simon Snowlock realises that he knows exactly where the sword is and how to recover it. The only problem: an undead army, bolstered by powerful magic, lies between him and his destination. It will take every ounce of Simon's courage and intelligence to journey to and then recover the great sword Memory and bring peace to Osten Ard.If Simon's quest is to have any hope, Josua must move against the Storm King himself - a journey that will take him across endless seas, through ancient forests and into the stronghold of the Storm King himself.The finale to Tad Williams' breathtaking, beloved series Memory, Sorrow and Thorn.

Hodder & Stoughton

To Green Angel Tower: Siege

Tad Williams
Authors:
Tad Williams

In order for the Storm King can cement his power over Osten Ard, he must find and defeat the rebel forces massing against him. But the rebels, led by the exiled Prince Josua, have rallied at the Stone of Farewell and are ready to fight the Storm King with every power they can muster. The key to their victory lies in finding the third sword of legend, Memory - but the sword has been lost for ages.Lost, that is, until Simon Snowlock realises that he knows exactly where the sword is and how to recover it. The only problem: an undead army, bolstered by powerful magic, lies between him and his destination. It will take every ounce of Simon's courage and intelligence to journey to and then recover the great sword Memory and bring peace to Osten Ard.If Simon's quest is to have any hope, Josua must move against the Storm King himself - a journey that will take him across endless seas, through ancient forests and into the stronghold of the Storm King himself.This is the first half of the the epic final volume in Tad Williams' breathtaking, beloved series Memory, Sorrow and Thorn.(P)2016 Hodder & Stoughton

Hodder & Stoughton

Stone of Farewell

Tad Williams
Authors:
Tad Williams
Hodder Paperbacks

Tailchaser's Song

Tad Williams
Authors:
Tad Williams

The extraordinary debut novel that launched Tad Williams' career, TAILCHASER'S SONG is an epic of high fantasy and grand adventure, where gods walk amongst their people and where even very small creatures can change the world.Weaving through the tall grasses of this world is Tailchaser, a young ginger tomcat with a good heart and a restless spirit. When his friend Hushpad vanishes, Tailchaser sets out to find her. His journey will take him further than he ever thought possible - from the court of the Firstwalkers, through the cities of M'an, and into the hellish depths of the earth itself, where an unimaginable horror awaits.

Hodder & Stoughton

The Dragonbone Chair

Tad Williams
Authors:
Tad Williams

Kitchen-boy Simon is bored, restless and fourteen years old - a dangerous combination. It seems, however, that his life has just taken a turn for the better when he's apprenticed to his castle's resident wizard. As Simon's learning to read and write under Doctor Morgenes' tutelage, forces greater than he could possible imagine are gathering: forces which will change Simon's life - and his world - forever.Following the death of Good King John, Osten Ard is plunged into civil war as his sons battle for control of the fabled Dragonbone Chair - the country's throne as well as the symbol of its power. Simon is forced to flee the only home he has ever known, a journey which will test him beyond his worst nightmares. With THE DRAGONBONE CHAIR, Tad Williams introduced readers to the incredible fantasy world of Osten Ard and kicked off the beloved, internationally bestselling series Memory, Sorrow and Thorn.(P)2015 Hodder & Stoughton

Hodder & Stoughton

To Green Angel Tower

Tad Williams
Authors:
Tad Williams
Hodder & Stoughton

Happy Hour in Hell

Tad Williams
Authors:
Tad Williams

Bobby Dollar has a problem or four of epic proportions. Problem one: his best friend Sam has given him an angel's feather that also happens to be evidence of an unholy pact between Bobby's employers and those who dwell in the infernal depths. Problem two: Eligor, Grand Duke of Hell, wants to get his claws on the feather at all costs, but particularly at all cost to Bobby . Problem three: Bobby has fallen in love with Casimira, Countess of Cold Hands, who just happens to be Eligor's girlfriend. Problem four: Eligor, aware of Problem three, has whisked Casimira off to the Bottomless Pit itself, telling Bobby he will never see her again unless he hands over the feather.But Bobby, long-time veteran of the endless war between above and below, is not the type of guy who finds Hell intimidating. All he has to do is toss on a demon's body, sneak through the infernal gates, solve the mystery of the angel's feather, and rescue the girl. Saving the day should just be a matter of an eon or two of anguish, mutilation and horror.If only it were that easy.

Hodder & Stoughton

The Dirty Streets of Heaven

Tad Williams
Authors:
Tad Williams

BOBBY DOLLAR ISN'T YOUR AVERAGE ANGEL.Sure, he takes the occasional trip to Heaven, but his job as an advocate - arguing the fate of the recently deceased - keeps him pretty busy on Earth, and he's more than happy to spend the rest of his time propping up the bar with his fellow immortals.Until the day a soul goes missing, presumed stolen by 'the other side'.A new chapter in the war between heaven and hell is about to open. And Bobby is right in the middle of it, with only a desirable but deadly demon to aid him.