a selection to choose from...
Q. If there was a point of no return in the book, a point where things were never going to be the same again – where do you think that was?
Q. The word witch – how does its use differ today? Can you still destroy someone’s reputation by calling them a name? What names have the same affect now as ‘witch’ did, in medieval times?
Q. What do you think Ledrede’s real motivation for accusing Alice Kytler of witchcraft was?
‘The cathedral was also
where I came across the anchoress’s grave. An anchorite or anchoress is a hermit
who gives up ordinary life for a solitary life of prayer – they are often
sealed in between the walls of a church, with only small ‘squints’ or windows
to receive food through. The figure of a nun is carved onto the anchoress’s
grave stone. Her hands are held in old style prayer position, palm facing
outwards rather than palms together. When I placed my palms over her stone
ones, I felt a strange sensation, close to the one that Petronelle describes in Her Kind, that of an old truth pushing back – that day the character
of Agnes the anchoress came to life.’ (Niamh Boyce)
The novel is beautifully written and transports us to the 14th century, though many of its themes loudly resonate today. I can’t wait to see where Niamh Boyce takes us next. (RTE Guide)
Q. Was the world of Her Kind familiar or strange to you? What had you expected medieval Ireland to be like? How was it different? What resonated?
Q. Her Kindis based on a real trial - a landmark case in the history of witchcraft - did that affect how you felt about the characters and their fate? Had you heard of the case before this? Why do you think this is?
Q. If you were to retrieve someone's voice from history, whose would it be?