Bury the Living
Author: Jodi McIsaac
Series: The Revolutionary, #1
Publication Date: September 6th, 2016
Synopsis: Rebellion has always been in the O’Reilly family’s blood. So when faced with the tragic death of her brother during Northern Ireland’s infamous Troubles, a teenage Nora joined the IRA to fight for her country’s freedom. Now, more than a decade later, Nora is haunted by both her past and vivid dreams of a man she has never met.
When she is given a relic belonging to Brigid of Kildare, patron saint of Ireland, the mystical artifact transports her back eighty years—to the height of Ireland’s brutal civil war. Here she meets the alluring stranger from her dreams, who has his own secrets—and agenda. Taken out of her own time, Nora has the chance to alter the fortunes of Ireland and maybe even save the ones she loves. In this captivating and adventurous novel from Jodi McIsaac, history belongs to those with the courage to change it.
About the Author and Q&A
Jodi McIsaac is the author of the Irish contemporary fantasy series The Thin Veil (47North) the thriller A Cure for Madness (Thomas & Mercer) and the forthcoming historical Revolutionary series, starting with Bury the Living (47North).
She grew up in New Brunswick, on Canada’s east coast. After abandoning her Olympic speed skating dream, she wrote speeches for a politician, volunteered in a refugee camp, waited tables in Belfast, earned a couple of university degrees, and started a boutique copywriting agency. She loves geek culture, running, and whisk(e)y.
What inspired you to write Bury the Living?
My first series, The Thin Veil, is based on Irish mythology. While researching those books I couldn’t help but learn more about Irish history, and I was completely drawn in. The more I read, the more I wanted to write about it, but I couldn’t nail down a particular time period. And so I decided to write a time travel series so that I wouldn’t be limited to just one era. At first I planned to start the series with the Easter Rising of 1916, but then I saw the heartbreaking film The Wind that Shakes the Barley and was so moved that I decided to focus on the Irish Civil War instead. The more I dug into it, the deeper I wanted to go. I wanted to tell the stories of these people and make them come alive. Besides, the Civil War is a perfect launching pad for a time travel series because it has its roots in the centuries-old conquest of Ireland by England, but also reaches into the future as the instigation behind the modern-day Troubles in Northern Ireland.
Nora’s background growing up in Belfast during the Troubles was inspired by my own experiences living in Belfast just after the Omagh bombing. I was in my early twenties at the time and so naïve about the political context around me, so I wanted to do more research on the Troubles and how it might have impacted those who were children and teenagers during the violence. Nora’s story of getting picked up by the Provos and being accused of selling drugs actually happened to a friend of mine (although my friend was innocent and Nora … well, I’ll let you read it!).
What is your favorite part of the writing process?
I love researching and I love editing. Researching is magical; it leads me down so many paths I wouldn’t have discovered on my own. And I love the fine-tuning of editing; taking the lump of clay I’ve slapped down as a first draft and shaping it into something beautiful.
What types of things do you like to have while you write (candy, tea, music, etc.)?
Silence is essential—even instrumental music throws me off. Although if my kids are home I put on my white noise app! I usually drink coffee in the mornings and then tea in the afternoons. And sometimes when I’m having a hard time getting my word count in I’ll bribe myself with candy—one M&M for every 200 words!
Which character in Bury the Living is your favorite?
I adored writing Pidge Gillies, Nora’s newfound friend in 1923. Pidge is young, spunky, gritty, and full of revolutionary zeal. She’s a composite of so many amazing women I read about during the course of my research—women who refused to stay home and let the men do the fighting, but instead fought passionately for the cause they believed in.
What advice do you have for aspiring writers?
Don’t give up! The publishing industry can be unpredictable and sometimes heartbreaking. Keep writing. Keep making art. Don’t give up.
3 Finished copies of BURY THE LIVING (US Only)