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I was born in Dallas, Texas, and some of my earliest memories are of traveling to other places by reading: Narnia, Middle Earth, Treasure Island, Mars.   As I grew older, I traveled to even more places - some wondrous like Hogwarts, some horrifying like Oceania - but always through the magical medium of books.  And I hoped one day to share some of the lands I'd visited only in my mind by writing books of my own.  Of course, I grew up and had to get a job - I teach history at Pepperdine University in Malibu, CA - but I've never lost the desire to invite you to visit the lands of my imagination.  I also never lost my fascination with Ireland or with folktales, so a few years ago I decided to sit down and write about the little boy, Jack, who had been in my head for a long time.  So, welcome and thank you for taking this journey with Jack and with me!

About Ballykillarney House
I wrote the first draft of Jack and the Hollow Hill in May and June of 2018.  In that draft, I disguised the location of the village, which was always Lismore, by using a name I had made up, "Ballykillarney," which means "The place of the church of the blackthorn trees."  However, after visiting the magical town of Lismore for the first time in 2019, I decided not to camouflage its name.  But I did decide to keep Ballykillarney as the name of my imprint for these stories!

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