Catherine Doyle

What books did you read when you were a child?
I loved magical stories full of adventure and imagination. The Chronicles of Narnia, Alice in Wonderland, Artemis Fowl and Harry Potter were some of my favourites.

If you could be a storybook character who would you be?
I would probably be Alice in Wonderland because I am a very curious (nosy) person who loves meeting new, quirky people. I’d quite like to go on some of her adventures too.

What is the best thing about reading?
Books unfurl pathways to completely different worlds - they can take you away from wherever you are and whatever you’re feeling. They expand the imagination and make the world seem bigger, brighter and full of possibility.

What is your all time favourite book?
I love The Princess Bride by William Goldman.

Other than reading books what is the most important thing a parent can do to help develop their children’s communication skills?
I grew up in a house that really valued imagination - aside from reading, my parents encouraged interactive make-believe play. We would make up our own songs on long car journeys, or come up with stories about magical creatures going on funny adventures. We were encouraged to write letters to the Tooth Fairy and to Santa, too. Often, they wrote back.

How big a part did your parents play in encouraging your writing skills?
My writing skills arose naturally from my interest in reading. My mom used to take my brothers and me to the library every week to pick out whatever books we wanted. My dad used to read Irish legends and fairy tales to me every night, and sometimes we would make up our own.

Which books you would recommend parents read to their children?
I would suggest classics like Alice in Wonderland, modern wonders like Rooftoppers by Katherine Rundell, timeless magical adventures like The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, and books that dabble in the legends and lore of whichever culture they come from. I grew up on a steady diet of Irish mythology and I think it helped to expand both my imagination and my understanding of Irish storytelling from a very early age.

Catherine Doyle grew up beside the Atlantic Ocean in the west of Ireland. Her love of reading began with great Irish myths and legends, and fostered in her an ambition to one day write her own. She holds a first class BA in Psychology and a first class MA in Publishing from the National University of Ireland, Galway, and is the author of the YA Blood for Blood trilogy. The Storm Keeper’s Island is her debut middle-grade novel. After living in Dublin City for two years, Catherine is now based in Galway but spends a lot of her time in London and the US.

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