Monday 12 April 2010


Queen Macha wasn’t a difficult choice for my story. After all, my home town of Armagh is named after her. So Ard Macha, meaning Macha’s high place, becomes Queen of the Hill, and she allows me to set a story in my own neck of the woods for the first time. But Macha is a slippery customer, and she could be any one of three mythical figures. Rather than choosing one, my Queen of the Hill takes a little from each. For example, the legend of the race against the king’s horses in which she gave birth to twins as she crossed the finish line becomes a game of poker and a ruined pair of shoes.

But one aspect of the legend is universal in all versions: her domination of the men she rules. She is a fearsome warrior of course, but she also used her sexuality to control those who desired her. In other words, she was that great archetype of noir fiction, the character that drove so many men to their dooms: she was the original femme fatale.

Watch out, or she’ll be the death of you.

Edited by Gerard Brennan & Mike Stone

Requiems for the Departed
Irish Crime, Irish Myths.

Requiems for the Departed can now be pre-ordered on the Morrigan Books website.

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