Book recommendation list Part II

Dorian E. Gray israfel at
Fri Mar 14 15:34:32 EST 2003

Ven asked...

> Dorian said
> <Gillian Cross is married to an MP, so probably
> has British citizenship
> through her marriage if not by birth (her books
> are all set in England);>
> Do you happen to know which one, constituency or
> party? Just out of idle curiousity.

Sorry.  Misread the rather minimal info at the front of my 1986 copy of "The
Demon Headmaster".  What it actually says is, in toto, "Gillian Cross has
had a variety of jobs, including teaching in university and a primary
school, childminding and constituency assistant to an M. P.  She lives in
Kent and is married with two children."  Obviously I managed to do some
conflation.  (But it does still strongly imply, as do the settings of all of
her books that I've read, that she's British.)
> <Catherine Sefton's "In a Blue Velvet Dress"
> (sort-of ghost story).(British)>
> Actulaly a man called Martin
> Something-Like-Waddel.

Yes, I didn't bother mentioning the fact that CS is a pen-name.  "She" is
actually Martin Waddell; he says (in the sort-of-bio-bit at the front of my
copy of "In a Blue Velvet Dress") that he uses the name "for longer, more
emotionally based books, while most of my Martin Wadell titles are simply

> Apparently the publishers
> thought his kind of fiction would sell better
> with a female name. He's Northern Irish and I
> definitly iinclude him amopng Irish writers.

He's indeed Northern Irish, from the Donaghadee/Newcastle area in Co. Down.
I don't classify him as Irish, because in my head, "Irish" implies that
either the author is a citizen of the Republic, or the story draws heavily
on Irish myth/folklore.  CS/MW sets the stories in British-ruled Northern
Ireland, but (in those I've read, anyway), leaves the myth/folklore alone -
the stories could possibly take place almost anywhere, whereas something
like "The Hounds of the Morrigan" could *only* happen in Ireland.  (I know
this sort of contradicts my claim that Osc.Wilde is Irish, but he's, like, a
Classic Author and goes by different rules. :-)  )

> I'm wondering about the designation British.

I was using it to designate any author who might reasonably be supposed to
have citizenship in England, Scotland, Wales, or Northern Ireland - not
counting authors drawing on Irish myth/folklore who were born in the 26
counties before 1937!

The "Irish thing" can get difficult. :-)

Until the sky falls on our heads...

Dorian E. Gray
israfel at

"I beseech you, in the bowels of Christ, think it possible you may be
- O. Cromwell

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