Thursday, April 03, 2014

Leaving Certificate revision 2014

Some links for VI formers revising English during these holidays and of course next term too.
  1. Our Macbeth resources page, including video/audio analyses of key moments, podcasts and lots more.
  2. Macbeth videos and activities.
  3. Claire Keegan's recent visit: what she said about Foster.
  4. An interview with Claire Keegan on 'Prosody', with lots of interesting comments by her on Foster, and several readings from the story.
  5. Evelyn O'Connor's LeavingCertEnglish.net has lots to interest you, including sections on Paper One.
  6. Three analyses of early key moments in Pride and Prejudice.
  7. A podcast on Seamus Heaney's 'Mossbawn - Sunlight'.
  8. Lots of audio and video links to poems on your course - a good way to revise.
  9. A reminder of Articles of the Week this year: keep reading similar articles over the holidays, on the net, in papers and in magazines - valuable for all parts of Paper One.
  10. The Chief Examiner's report for 2013 has just been published and you can learn plenty of lessons from it (some of which are handily summarised by Evelyn O'Connor here).

'Macbeth' resources

Here is a summary of some resources for study and revision of Macbeth, which will be updated frequently during the year. It's on the lines of our much-visited Hamlet page.

1. Seven revision podcasts, including:-
  • The crucial moment : the soliloquy in Act I scene vii before the murder.
  • The real Lady Macbeth.
  • King Macbeth - law and order in Scotland.
  • Malcolm the hero?
  • The Witches and the Supernatural.
  • A quotation auto-test.
  • Macbeth's tragic end - 'Tomorrow, and tomorrow ...'
  • And all seven are also on Soundcloud here.

2. The whole text of the play in a variety of formats - put it on your computer/tablet/e-reader for easy access.
3. Notes from a thought-provoking talk on the play given by the playwright Frank McGuinness at the Abbey Theatre.
4. BBC Bitesize microsite for revision (level - GCSE).
5. Times Educational Supplement resources, including our own podcasts [requires registration].
6. Shakespeare Searched: a 'Google for Shakespeare' - terrific resource for looking up quotations, self-testing and so on.
7. 'Macbeth in Monaghan' series on RTÉ radio [podcasts].
8. A series of ShowMe analyses of key moments in the play, using video and audio annotation. 
9. Newbridge College 'resource pack' on the play. 
10. Evelyn O'Connor at LeavingCertEnglish.net has a series of posts on the 'Blame Game' in the play here
11. A quotation auto-test [written] to prompt some thoughts...

More coming...

Saturday, March 29, 2014

Poetry video and audio

Elizabeth Bishop
One of the best ways to revise poetry (and of course to approach it in the first place) is by hearing the poet - or just a good reader - reading it out to you. So here is a list of poems by authors on the Leaving Certificate course for examination in 2014 (we'll add other poets for next year's course) you can listen to and/or watch. If no reader is mentioned, it is the poet him/herself.

Another audio tip:
Use your phone to record your own reading of the poem. No-one likes listening to their own voice, but do, and improve your version; this is a very good way to understand the poem, especially its rhythm and sound patterns, and will also help you learn it off by heart.

This post will be refreshed every now and then with more helpful audio, including material about the poets.


Elizabeth Bishop

Emily Dickinson

Seamus Heaney

Thomas Kinsella

Philip Larkin



Derek Mahon

Sylvia Plath

W.B. Yeats

Monday, March 24, 2014

Articles of the Week 2013-14

This is an ongoing listing of links to the Articles of the Week used with our Leaving Certificate pupils this academic year.

The idea came from the American teacher and writer Kelly Gallagher, and it fits very well into the Leaving course, getting pupils used to reading interesting articles and thus helping them in both the comprehension and composition sections of their Paper 1, as well as expanding their knowledge base and vocabulary and providing interesting topics for discussion.

Click here for Gallagher's current articles, and read more about the theory behind the scheme in his excellent book Readicide: how schools are killing reading and what you can do about it. Pupils have to mark up the articles with annotations before class discussion.

  1. September 2013 : '12 things we know about how the brain works' by Shane Parrish, The Week, August 26th 2013 [science, learning, studying].
  2. September : 'Never be lost for words' by Richard Fitzpatrick, The Irish Times, September 13th 2013 [sport, language, rhetoric, motivation].
  3. September: 'Synesthesia Sells' by Laura Spinney, Slate, from the New Scientist, September 22nd 2013 [science, marketing, commerce]. 
  4. October: 'Westgate mall attacks: urban areas are the battleground of the 21st century' by David Kilcullen, The Guardian, September 27th 2013 [terrorism, conflict, cities]. 
  5. October: 'Best. Column. Ever.' by Shane Hegarty, Irish Times, October 4th 2013 [sport, language, journalism]. 
  6. October: 'A Tiny Pronoun Says a Lot About You' by Elizabeth Bernstein, Wall Street Journal, October 7th 2013 [language, psychology, status].
  7. November: 'How Do Spies Bug Phones?' in The Economist, October 31st 2013 [spying, internet, privacy]. 
  8. December: 'How Music Makes Us Feel Better' by Maria Konnikova, New Yorker, September 26th 2013 [music, brain]. 
  9. December: 'Why European women are still smoking like chimneys' by Carmel Lobello, The Week, December 6th 2013 [health, marketing]. 
  10. January 2014: 'How Language Seems to Shape One's View of the World' by Alan Yu, NPR, January 2nd 2014 [language, bilingualism, brain]. 
  11. January : 'We're a nation of mass dog murderers' by Aaron McKenna, The Journal.ie, January 18th 2014 [animals, society].
  12. January: The Roma - review of I Met Lucky People by Yaron Matras, by Sukhdev Sandhu, The Guardian, January 29th 2014 [Roma, prejudice, society]. 
  13. February: A giraffe has been killed - why the fuss? by Mary Warnock, The Guardian, February 10th 2014 [ethics, animals].
  14. February: The Disunited Kingdom by Kathleen Jamie, New York Times, February 23rd 2014 [Scotland, democracy, politics]. 
  15. March: 'Can 10,000 hours of practice make you an expert?' by Ben Carter, BBC News Magazine, March 1st 2014 [education, skill, learning, talent].

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Twitterbag 4

Every now and then we rescue some fish from the Twitter stream. Here are a few more from recent tweets ...


Friday, March 14, 2014

Claire Keegan and 'Foster'

Recently our Leaving Cert pupils were lucky enough to be visited for a reading and talk by Claire Keegan, author of the superb short story/novella Foster, which they have been studying for their comparative literature module. Claire read the last section of the book, and then took questions:





Why does the book end with “‘Daddy,’ I keep calling him, keep warning him. ‘Daddy.”
I think that maybe I should have ended the book with “Daddy, I warn him. I call him Daddy". I would hope that this by this stage you would believe that she would love to have Kinsella as her father, because she has a father who doesn’t really care for her; he’s an alcoholic, he’s not just a good or loving father so it’s kind of a difficult place to be. Kinsella is very fond of her, and she’s very fond of him, and I think he’s a decent man, and he has no children of his own any more, so for me when she sees her Daddy coming, it’s very natural for her to say ‘Daddy’ but because she’s in Kinsella’s arms she’s actually saying it to him. So even though she’s warning Kinsella that her father is coming to get her, what she’s doing in that moment is she’s calling Kinsella ‘Daddy’ which is something she’s wanted to do and couldn’t do until this moment and she didn’t plan it, and the moment enabled her to say something that she wanted to say even though she didn’t intend it.

Why does she just call the woman ‘woman’?
I think that where I came from is a very odd place! And I don’t think that’s any exaggeration! We’re all a bit strange about names and a name can first of all give you a huge amount of information about a family, if you know a surname. Whose son you are, whose daughter you are.

The second thing about a name is that it really can be affectionate to call someone by their name and I remember when I went to New Orleans to go to university when I was 17 people introducing themselves to me and to other people and I found it very strange to have my name said and my hand shaken. It just seemed like a huge and adult formality. Adults would have names for each other which had degrees of distance and affection. Children if they were not given a name to address someone by or us - if you were brought into the House and you were the girl and I was Mrs Kinsella, if I did not say to you ‘Call me Edna or Auntie Edna or Mrs Kinsella’ - you would not know what to call me. So you couldn’t call me anything. It was a way of keeping you at arm’s length, by not telling you what you can call me or how you can address me. I think one of the things that Mrs Kinsella did was she did not want to get too fond of the girl; I think she had a fear of getting too fond of a child who she knew she would have to lose at the end of the summer. And so one of the ways she handled this - and I think handled it well - was to give her no name to address her by. It’s again the power of naming or not giving someone a name. Also it’s a story about when you’re a child you really don’t know what’s going on a lot of the time and when you’re in a strange place with people you’ve never met before or have no memory of ever having met, you’re landed in deep water and you’re not quite sure how to carry on and with this situation I think that not being told what to call her was part of the portrait of not knowing what was going on.

Did you ever think about continuing the story or did you want to leave it as just a bit ambiguous?
I don’t feel it is ambiguous. I felt the story was finished, and I feel that every single story is completed by its reader, not by its writer. That’s the way I like to read. And everything I had to say about the circumstances of these people I said in the number of pages I had. I also think that every story is incomplete. Most of the work in a piece of fiction is done by the reader, not the writer. It’s what the writer stokes up in the reader. Each reader’s private life, secret life, comes out. Imagination is stoked by the text. No two people will ever read the same book.

At the end why is Mrs Kinsella crying? “As though she is she crying not for one now, but for two?”
Well, you have the right answer! Whatever you think. But for me there is a child who almost drowned and the weight of the bucket of water nearly killed her, and I think that Mrs Kinsella up until the point she left her home was suffering imagined loss of the girl on top of the loss of her own son and it was only after she left her back to the relative physical safety of her home that she felt the relief and could cry. We often cry out of relief. For me, that is what she was suffering from or experiencing at that moment. But she could have been driving up that lane to tell those people that your daughter has drowned. I think that she was living with that.

Mrs Kinsella is quite realistic about the girl: she knew that she would go back to her family. Perhaps Kinsella hoped she mightn’t in a stronger way or a less realistic way. Mrs Kinsella didn’t let herself get as fond of this child as her husband did.

Why did you write from the girls’ perspective and in the present tense?
Well, it’s her story, and she’s the bridge between the two houses. I told it in the present tense because again I wanted it to be a portrait of a piece of time, and she didn’t know when this would end or how it would end and so I wanted her to go from day to day with the feeling of real uncertainty and I think that if I’d written it in the past tense, that would have taken some of that away. It would have already happened rather than being something that was happening.

What inspired it?
Nobody knows where fiction comes from. We don’t know how our minds work. I don’t know where what I write comes from. I did have a picture in my mind for a long time, and that was an image of a hand over still water and the reflection on the surface of that water, and I wanted to explore where that came from. And I came up with this girl.

Is it a happy ending or a sad ending?
That’s up to you. It’s not a way I look at life; I think it’s a strange way to measure something. I don’t try to be happy. I think that’s a way to be miserable! Whereas I think that if something feels good in the long-term it’s because you’ve learned something. And so if you could gauge  the piece of time she goes through in this book as a piece of time when she learns a lot … I would say that that is a kind of happiness. And I would say she developed hugely over the summer, and actually came of age because she was minded. Nothing flourishes so much as that which is neglected, and is then minded. You grow really well when you are minded. I don’t mind if you think it’s happy or unhappy: what I would like you to think is that it was inevitable. Good stories for me end inevitably: after they finish you feel there’s only one thing that could have happened, and that is the thing that happened. And I think it’s inevitable that she would return home, and that the Kinsellas would go back to the house with no child.

What did you pick a girl as the main character rather than a boy?
I think a boy would be less likely to be taken away from the original home, and left out there for the summer. I think he would be kept closer to the family, especially if he was an only son. They say that there are very few good Irish men in literature, good Irish fathers. So many of the fathers in our literature are just awful and neglectful, especially when it comes to fathering a girl and one on the things I probably wanted to do is have a good Irish father in this story. I wanted him also to use his humour and his intelligence and energy with a girl, rather than fostering someone who is male.  I don’t think Kinsella was good to her because she was a girl. I just thought he was a decent man who enjoyed her company. So for me it was an opportunity to explore how that would work. I think also because he himself had lost a son, I wouldn’t have wanted another boy to come in: that might have been too symmetrical, too obviously a replacement for the child he had lost.

There’s mention of a lost heifer. What’s the significance of this?
I don’t know. I just liked the cow so I put it in! Have you ever seen a lost heifer? No? Okay? First of all, heifers are herd animals. They don’t like being alone. She’s not going to be happy. If you saw a lost heifer on a country road, she’s probably be going to be panicking and they’re so big and powerful, and they’re not like a horse who will run swiftly pass you - they’ll panic and go through you. There’s a wonderful quotation by Flannery O’Connor, who said the art of writing fiction is the art of creating pictures. We enjoy fiction when we put the pictures together and they seem to come from the same place, to belong together. It is kind of a dramatic moment to see an animal like that, a great big beast who’s alone. And I suppose you could say the whole story is about families, and about belonging and the heifer is alone and isolated. A long answer for a short question. But I like cows!

Where does the cover picture come from?
It’s a picture taken in the Luxembourg Gardens in Paris of a carousel there and it was taken by John McGahern’s wife Madeleine.  She gave it to me as a present. I just thought, there’s the cover.

How easy was it to write from a child’s point of view?
I minded children for years, and I got on really well with children - that sense of wonder and that sense of freshness. I think because everyone’s been a child then they think they can easily write about being a child and I do think that isn’t true. I enjoyed that part of it - seeing how different knowledge is in a different way of looking at the world.


[Further listening/reading:-
An interview on 'Prosody', with several readings and lots of interesting points.
An interview with Sean O'Hagan in the Guardian.]
 

Saturday, March 08, 2014

'The Dead'

No 18 in a series of occasional reviews of iPhone/iPod Touch/iPad apps useful for English literature and language learning and teaching. 

The UCD Humanities Institute has recently released an iPad app of James Joyce's famous short story (the last in Dubliners), 'The Dead', called 'An exploration of Joyce's short story through text, sound and images.' It's free, and well worth downloading. Best of all is a full audio reading (1 hour, 35 minutes) by the great Barry McGovern, and there are also commentaries on elements of the story, a walking tour with McGovern, a slideshow of Joyce's Dublin and, of course, the full text of the story itself.

Download it from iTunes here (there are some comments on the pause button not working - it does for us).

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Longbourn

Half-term starts tomorrow, and anyone looking for a good book to read over this period should seek out Jo Baker's Longbourn, new in paperback, especially those in VI and V currently studying Pride and Prejudice (and now in our Library, too).

Baker's idea is one of those that make you wonder why anyone didn't tackle it already: Pride and Prejudice seen from the perspective of the servants in the Bennet household (or, at least, as much of that story that actually impinges on them). And she writes very well, capturing the texture of everyday life vividly.  This book, apart from being a very enjoyable read, will also be valuable in prompting thoughts about Cultural Context for those preparing for the Leaving Certificate, and there are fresh thought-provoking ideas about several characters in the original novel.  In some reviews, Downton Abbey has been mentioned: ignore this, since apart from the anachronism, this is a wholly superior piece of work. It could valuably be read alongside another excellent piece of literature about Austen, John Mullan's What Matters in Jane Austen?

Sunday, February 09, 2014

Candide: the 2014 Junior Play

Over the last three nights, the Big Schoolroom was taken over by an excellent production of an adaptation of Voltaire's Candide. One of the visitors was our former Head of English, John Fanagan, and these are his thoughts:-


Ten years ago, in 2004, a major refurbishment of the Big Schoolroom took place, which gave a wonderful new lease of life to the nineteenth century building's use as a performance venue. The audience for this year's Junior Play, Candide, enjoyed a very creative and visually arresting use of the space. In the traditional stage area were banked rows of seating. Likewise on both sides of the Big Schoolroom. At the Cadogan end, and right down the centre, were the main acting areas. Ronan Swift and his fellow directors produced a fast-moving and highly enjoyable version of Voltaire's novel.


The central character, Candide, is hardly ever off the stage. Casting James O'Connor was a bit of a gamble: he is very young (I Form) and his voice is not as strong or developed as some others in the cast. However, as the performance unfolded, I became increasingly convinced. His (relative) youth emphasised the essential naivety and optimism of his character. He has a sympathetic stage presence and was very assured in a most challenging role. In the plot he was often at sea, but never in his acting.


There were more than twenty other young actors in the cast, the majority of them playing more than one role. Their versatility and easy transition from one character (and/or gender) to another were very impressive. The exotic costumes added to the spectacle, particularly on Mantuk Suen as the Sofi. Freddie de Montfort's roles as Dutch Citizen/Monkey/Prime Minister will give some idea of how they had to move from one extreme to another. There were some very strong performances among the single role characters. Aisling McBurney was a pert and coquettish Cunnigonde. After a quiet start, the role of the servant Cacambo was played with mournful authority by Ralph Sweetman-Sutton. Ross Magill had everyone in stitches as the Old Woman (imagine an eighteenth century Mrs Doyle from Fr  Ted). Michael Kennedy had the the scene at the start as Narrator mad a brief (but highly effective) cameo appearance later as Don Issachar.

The cast were roughly fifty-fifty boys-girls and some of the girls gave  especially confident performances: Darcy Maule as the Queen of Bulgaria and Elizaveta Kozhevnikova as Sergeant/Dervish come to mind. I was sitting  beside an Old Columban from the 1980s, Hugo Smythe, who was obviously enjoying his  daughter Louvisa (Soldier/King of Eldorado/Whip Master) as much as she was enjoying herself on stage. That enjoyment pervaded the production. They were all having the best time; I thought Mark Crampton (Baron)  might levitate, he was having such a ball. All of the cast will long remember participitating in such a lively and imaginative production.

Music and sound effects helped move the production along. I particularly enjoyed hearing Tristan Clarke's Sine Nomine choir making their contributions. When you look at all the pupils and staff involved, you realise what effort, on so many levels, went into this Candide. I would applaud the producers' ambition and the great pleasure they gave to cast and audience alike.

John Fanagan.

Saturday, February 08, 2014

TY Extended Essay: Childhood & Parenthood

In another in the series of excellent recent Transition Year Extended Essays, here is Darcy Maule's. She wrote on the theme of childhood and parenthood in three books, and explains in her introduction:

"The three books I chose for my extended essay are We Need to Talk about Kevin by Lionel Shriver, The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time by Mark Haddon and In the Blood; A Memoir of My Childhood by Andrew Motion. After completing all three of my books, I was very pleased with what I had chosen. I was fairly certain I wanted to read We Need to Talk about Kevin from the beginning as I had heard of it before and the whole concept of the book sounded so appealing to me for my essay that I had to read it. When I had established that I was reading this book, my theme was clear to me; childhood and parenthood. However it is a broad theme, I wanted to especially focus on the psychological aspect of the theme as it a subject that I have always been so curious about and thought that this essay was the perfect excuse to study this in depth through reading my books.

All three books are told in the first person narrative. We Need to Talk about Kevin is told from the point of view of the mother of a boy called Kevin who is the killer in a high school massacre. The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time is narrated by a boy called Christopher who has Asperger’s syndrome. The book is written in the most interesting way and includes maths puzzles, diagrams and pictures. In the Blood is an autobiography of the author, Andrew Motion’s childhood.
 

All three of the books are very different, but they are all about the same period; childhood. I thought that because they were so different it would be really interesting to compare them as childhood is such an important time in someone’s life. It shapes you to be the person you will become and it sets a base for your entire life. It truly is the most fascinating period of someone’s life as the amount you learn in your first 10 years or so of your life will be more than you ever will learn."

Read Darcy's full essay here.

Tuesday, February 04, 2014

Linguistic Analysis

We recently received a very helpful Comment on our system, and thought that classes might like to analyse it as a piece of writing. So here you go:-

TESTIMONY Hello my name is MONICA from United Kingdom, I never believe in love spells until I experience Dr.HOODOO, and after he cast a love spell for me, my Ex husband who left me and 2 of our kids for 3years called me to apologize for the pain that he has caused me and till today we are living a happy family, if you need a right place to solve your problems contact DR HOODOO is the right choice. he is a great man that have been casting spells with years of experience, and his spell is absolutely harm free. he cast spells for different purposes like: (1)If you want your ex back. (2) if you always have bad dreams. (3)You want to be promoted in your office. (4)You want women/ men to run after you. (5)If you want a child. (6)[You want to be rich. (7)You want to tie your husband/wife to be yours forever. (8)If you need financial assistance. (9)Herbal care Contact him today on:hoodoo_spelltemple@hotmail.co.uk

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Junior Poetry Prize, 2014

The theme of this year's Junior Poetry Prize is Movement (sport, dance, moving house, changing places, planets spinning, flexibility, little flutters, enormous earthquakes, the sea, first steps, spinning, a bullet moving, a ballerina, slow steps, quick jumps...).

Any interpretation of the above theme is welcome.  Poems should be twelve lines or more, and each entrant may enter as many poems as they wish. You should e-mail your poem(s) to Ms Smith or hand your poem to your English teacher or Ms Smith no later than Thursday 3rd of April 2014.

Friday, January 24, 2014

Twitterbag 3

Another in the irregular series of round-ups of interesting English links from our recent Twitter stream :-

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Senior Poetry Prize 2013-14

Entries are invited to our annual Senior Poetry Prize, in memory of Old Columban Peter Dix (above, the sculpture by Joe Sloan which is displayed in the Library). 

This year the themes are Freedom and/or Friendship and/or Family. Entries should contain a portfolio of two to five poems of 40 lines at most, and at least 10 lines. The winning entry will be chosen on the overall standard of the entrant's collection. As usual, the best entries will be posted here.

Poems are to be emailed to Mr Canning by Friday 24th May.

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Emily Dickinson Archive

There is a new superb poetry resource now on the web, particularly useful for those of us teaching and studying Emily Dickinson for the Leaving Certificate: the Emily Dickinson Archive from Harvard University.

To summarise in the site's own words, this is what you can now do -
  • Browse images of manuscripts of her poems by first line/title, date, or recipient.
  • Use the image tools to zoom in and examine the poet’s handwriting, paper, sewing holes, and other features.
  • Choose the Reading View to see the back of a page, or to turn the pages of one of Dickinson’s manuscript books.
  • Search the full text of six editions of Dickinson’s poems.
  • See how different editors have transcribed Dickinson’s poems over more than 100 years.
  • Explore Emily Dickinson’s Lexicon, and jump from words in her dictionary to the poems to see the word in context. [needs registration at the Lexicon first]
  • Create an account to make notes on an image, save your own transcription of a poem, and create your own edition.

[Update, January 2014]

Another excellent and beautiful resource is the newly-published hardback, Emily Dickinson: The Gorgeous Nothings, edited by Marta Werner and Jen Bervin. This collects and reproduces illustrations of the 'envelope poems' that Dickinson wrote later in her life. As Bervin writes in her introduction, 

'Dickinson's writing materials might best be described as epistolary. Everything she wrote - poems, letters, and drafts, in fascicles, on folios, individual sheets, envelopes, and fragments - was predominantly composed on plain, machine-made stationery ... When Dickinson approached her compositional space to write, she was reading and responding to her materials.'

This is a fascinating book which gives a vivid visual insight into Dickinson's compositions.

English Prizes 2013

Congratulations to the winners of the 2014 English Prizes – Siobhán Brady (senior) and Callum Pery-Knox-Gore (junior). There were large fields in both prizes, of a pleasingly high standard, and the following have been awarded Distinctions for excellent entries:

Sadhbh Sheeran (VI), Brendan Dickerson (VI), Ally Boyd Crotty, Eliza Hancock, Sofia McConnell, Iyobosa Bello-Asemoto, John Clarke (all V), Louvisa Karlsson-Smythe (IV), Phoebe Otway-Norwood (III), Helena Gromotka (II), Nyla Jamieson (II) and Catherine Butt (I).

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Extended Essay: Sutcliff, Steinbeck, Hosseini

For his Transition Year Extended Essay, Andrew Holt wrote about war and conflict in three books: The Eagle of the Ninth by Rosemary Sutcliff, The Moon is Down by John Steinbeck and Khaled Hosseini's The Kite Runner

You can read Andrew's excellent essay about these novels with very different backgrounds via Issuu below. Click once for a close view, once more for the closest, and navigate by using the arrows.

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Extended Essay: Hemingway, Remarque, Faulks

The second in a series of the best literary Extended Essays written by our Transition Year pupils: Liza Kozhevnikova wrote about war from the point of view of men fighting in it. She looked at Ernest Hemingway's A Farewell to Arms, Erich Maria Remarque's All Quiet on the Western World and Birdsong by Sebastian Faulks.

She writes: "These three books are linked together by a theme, and they also are all set during the First World. I chose my three books so that they will be set in different places and written in different countries, because it gives me a point of view on the war of men from different countries."

Read Liza's full essay here.