Winning Werewolves

Congratulations to Adina McNulty from Ballina, Co. Mayo who has won the third annual O’Brien Press/CBI ‘Design A Cover’ Competition! Adina will see her design gracing the cover of a new edition of scary werewolf tale October Moon by best-selling author Michael Scott. Well done also to Thomas Caffrey from Duleek, Co. Meath who was awarded 2nd place and will see his design appearing on the back cover of the book, and to runners-up Sophie Gallagher from Kilpedder, Co. Wicklow, Aoife Harty from Nenagh, Co. Tipperary, Neale McKenna from Scotstown, Monaghan and Niamh Buttle from Enniscorthy, Co. Wexford. Well done to everyone who took part!

Christmas Sale!

Snowed in? Itching to get started on your Christmas shopping?

Well, look no further – there’s 20% off all books at www.obrien.ie for Christmas!

Shop as normal, and your discount will be applied at checkout. We use Paypal so all your transactions are safe and secure, and we ship worldwide.

Sale ends on 14th December so don’t miss out!

Bright Sparks

Book Now for Story Spark, a fantastic season of tales, literature and imagination taking place at The Ark in Dublin’s Temple Bar in December. With fun and lively readings and events for all ages with children’s authors Joe O’Brien, Oisín McGann, Gillian Perdue, Brianóg Brady Dawson, Sarah Webb, Aubrey Flegg and Enda Wyley and others, a visit to Story Spark is a great way to light up those dark winter days! Check out for The Ark for more information and details on how to book. Also, a big congratulations to Joe O’Brien, who has just been nominated for an Irish Book Award for his magical children’s book Alfie Green and the Chocolate Cosmos – don’t forget to vote!

O’Brien Press author is named first ever Laureate na nÓg

Siobhan ParkinsonIrish children’s author Siobhán Parkinson was named the first ever Laureate na nÓg in a ceremony in Dublin yesterday. A new initiative by the Arts Council, with the support of Children’s Books Ireland, the Office of the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs and Poetry Ireland, the honour was awarded to Siobhán by President Mary McAleese. A multi-award-winning children’s author, Siobhán has published many books for children and her work has been translated into many languages. Among her most popular and award-winning books are Four Kids, Three Cats, Two Cows, One Witch (maybe), which was described by Robert Dunbar as ‘one of the best Irish children’s books we’ve ever had’, Sisters … no way! and Amelia among others. Congratulations to Siobhán from all at The O’Brien Press!

And the Oscar goes to …

The Secret of Kells animated feature film (on which the O’Brien books of the same name are based) has been nominated for an Oscar in the prestigious Best Animated Feature Film Category. Fellow nominees include ‘Coraline’, ‘Fantastic Mr. Fox’, ‘The Princess and the Frog’ and ‘Up’. All five nominees will go on to compete for the top prize at the Oscars in LA on 7th March.

The Secret of Kells picture book, novel and DVD are all available from www.obrien.ie.

Oh Canada

A musical based on the classic children’s best-seller Under the Hawthorn Tree by Marita Conlon-McKenna has been nominated in the category of ‘Best New Work’ at the Ovation Theatre Awards in Vancouver, Canada.

It’s a very special honour as award nominees are chosen by leaders of the theatrical community in Vancouver.

The Ovation Awards take place on Sunday, 31st January. Good luck to everyone involved!

Skype Hype

Author Conor Kostick, he of the critically-acclaimed Epic and Saga, recently gave a talk to a group of students, which he does regularly. The difference being that this time Conor was in Ireland, and the school was in New Hampshire in the US. Conor’s books are hugely popular throughout the US, and with the aid of Skype, he’s able to connect with his fans overseas and take part in events. Teachers and students at the New Hampshire school reported that their event with Conor was a great success and that it was a thrill for them to be able to talk to one of their favourite authors.

Conor is also the author of The Book of Curses for younger readers, and Move, for older readers. He is the recent recipient of the Reading Association of Ireland Special Merit Award 2009, not only for Move, but also for his overall body of work and his contribution to science-fiction writing for children. He looks forward to taking part in lots more transatlantic events in the future!

Awards Season

More good news here at OBP this week with the announcement that The Guinness Story by  Edward J. Bourke has been shortlisted for a Gourmand World Cook Book Award.

First published in 2009, The Guinness Story was named the ‘Winner in Ireland’ in three categories: ‘Best Drinks History Book’, ‘Best Book for Professionals’ and ‘Best Beer Book’. It will now go forward to compete with the best international titles from 2009 in the category of ‘Best Drinks History Book’. The Guinness Story is one of just four titles to be shortlisted for this prestigious Award.

The winners will be announced at the Paris Bookfair on 11th February. Fingers crossed!

Design A Book Cover Competition Winners Announced!

TheLoughNeaghMonsterFollowing the huge success of our cover design competition last year, we teamed up with Children’s Books Ireland again with a fantastic competition to interest and challenge Ireland’s young artists, and to celebrate the Children’s Book Festival.
A brand new edition of Sam McBratney’s classic title The Lough Neagh Monster is due for publication in spring 2010 and we asked readers around the country to design the cover.
We were really impressed by the talent out there and judging all of the entries was a very difficult job. But now we’re delighted to announce the results!

In first place is Sophie Courtney (10) from Carysfort N.S. in Co. Dublin, whose bold illustration and inspired concept for the title text will be featured on the front cover of the new edition of The Lough Neagh Monster. Congratulations to Sophie!

In second place is Ciára Taggart (12) from Dominican College in Co. Antrim, who’s clever incorporation of both monster characters and brightly coloured lettering will be used for the back cover.

And the three runners-up whose designs will be used on the inside covers are Stephen Kissane (14) from Salesian’s College in Co. Kildare, Christina Jefferson (13) from Downshire School in Co Antrim and Orla Donoghue (15) who entered through her local library in Tallaght, South Dublin.

This great new edition of The Lough Neagh Monster will be available from bookshops in Spring 2010.

In the meantime, all five winners will also receive a hamper of O’Brien Press titles and special certificates commemorating their fantastic achievement.

A big congratulations to everyone who took part, and to Children’s Books Ireland who helped make the Design A Cover Competition a great success! You can check out all the winning cover designs here: Design-A-Cover Competition

5 out of 6 cats prefer O’Brien Press

Great news for OBP this week with the announcement of the shortlist for the Reading Association of Ireland Awards 2009. Shortlisted titles include The Poison Throne, the stunning debut from Celine Kiernan, critically-acclaimed author Conor Kostick’s latest book, Move, the gorgeously illustrated and sweet story Hal’s Sleepover by Maddie Stewart, Wild Dublin by Eanna Ni Lamhna, award-winning best-seller The Story of Ireland by Brendan O’Brien and Cois Life‘s Adolf Sna hArda by Marvin Halleraker. Congrats to all!