In Darshan, Irene Black explores issues of cultural and ethnic identity. The leading character, Sara Davis, travels from Oxford, via Germany and America and finally back to India in her search for her father and in a quest to resolve her feelings of 'rootlessness'. Her journey is fuelled by her longing to belong rather than 'not quite fitting in' anywhere.
Irene Black has been a psychologist and a teacher and has lived in the USA, Australia and India. She has an MA in South Asian Art, specializing in the art and architecture of South India. In her novels 'The Moon's Complexion' and 'Darshan: a Journey' her experiences of Indian culture are essential ingredients of her plots. She has won numerous national and international prizes for short stories, poetry and articles, including the 2003 National Association of Writers' Groups Annual Best Short Story award, and she was shortlisted for the 2008 Bristol Prize. Some of her short stories are available for download on Kindle, published either by Goldenford or by Untreed Reads. She lives in Surrey. In 2006 one of her prize-winning short stories, 'A Dog's Life' was broadcast on BBC Radio, read by Bernard Cribbins.
All her novels are available in paperback and also as Kindle e-books.
Her latest novel, 'Noontide Owls', a Young Adult' Fantasy novel was published in September 2011.
Noontide Owls is the story of Ambamar and its inhabitants: iron-mining Anvil People, gigantic, agricultural Timekeepers, mysterious, scholarly Scribes and Mariners - the fisher folk. Their histories were written long ago in secret papers, and in a magical speaking book that Elin and Arolan, the two trumpeters who herald the promise of a new dawn, carry down from the Iron Mountain, where it had lain hidden for a century. It is imperative for the people to learn these fantastical tales that bind them, for along with freedom from 100 years of cruel oppression, are hatching the serpents of hatred and distrust.
It is left to Maara, the girl with three blessings,to try and stop the ruin of Ambamar. Her task is fraught with danger, as she encounters destructive nature spirits, heroes and villains, raging seas, desert sands, dark forests and magical creatures.
Noontide Owls is a tale for all ages from 9 to 109.