Friday, 23 August 2013

Edinburgh Book Festival - author event - Evie Wyld and Amy Sackville

Amy Sackville
By Maryom

Sometimes at literary events it's difficult to see why certain authors have been paired together but it wasn't on this occasion  - the Chair's introduction almost made them seem like twins! Both, amongst a raft of other awards, are winners of the John Llewellyn Rhys Prize for authors under 35; both work with books and
Evie Wyld
words in their 'day job' - Amy Sackville teaches creative writing at the University of Kent and Evie wyld works at an independent bookshop; both were here to talk about their second novels and both of those novels are set on islands!
I've been aware of Amy Sackville for a while - I reviewed The Still Point for Bookmunch back in 2010 and absolutely adored it - but Evie Wyld is a new, almost accidental, 'find' and I was in the middle of reading her latest novel, All the Birds, Singing 

Evie Wyld's All the Birds Singing is a tale of an Australian woman breeding sheep on a cold, wet British island, trying to escape from her past and seeking redemption for her past actions. Amy Sackville's Orkney follows a mismatched couple on their honeymoon. The husband begins to wonder how well he knows his much-younger wife and why she was so insistent on their travelling to this remote northern island.

The event started as is usual with the authors reading from their respective books, then chatting with the Chair. The subjects touched included research and future plans - and the authors suddenly diverged from their twin-like image. Evie Wyld had been researching very practical matters -  understanding the fundamentals of sheep farming and how to shear them, though not actually having a go herself - while Amy Sackville had immersed herself in myths of selkies and mer-people. For the future too, their paths are taking seperate ways;  Amy Sackville is planning a research trip for her next novel to somewhere warm and sunny; Evie Wyld is moving to a different genre with the submission of a graphic novel.

I for one will be watching very closely what both these authors do in the future.

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