The Chronicles of Iona

Image of the Island of Iona
Map of the Island of Iona

The Chronicles of Iona: Exile is the first in a historical-fiction series based on the lives of Saint Columba of Iona and the warlord Áedán mac nGabráin, the two men who laid the foundations of Scotland. They were a real-life 6th-century Merlin and King Arthur. Think George R.R. Martin's The Game of Thrones, but true. Columba (Colmcille), who was from the ruling family of Donegal and who founded Derry (establishing a monastery), was excommunicated from Ireland in 563 A.D. for a violent act. He was exiled to the pagan Scots' colony of Dalriada on the west coast of Scotland. There he was befriended by Áedán mac nGabráin, the down-and-out second son of the colony's previous king. On the strength of that friendship Columba overcame a crisis of faith to found the monastery of Iona, one of the greatest centers of civilization in Dark Age Europe, and Áedán became the greatest warlord of his age. For both, what begins as a personal imperative becomes a series of events that literally change the world.

About the Author. 

Paula de Fougerolles has a doctorate from the Department of Anglo-Saxon, Norse and Celtic, University of Cambridge, and has taught and published in the field.  She reads 13 languages, most of which are long dead. She has lived and traveled extensively throughout Ireland and Scotland, including a year-long Thomas J. Watson Fellowship in which she crisscrossed Europe in search of the physical remains of the Dark Ages—research which ultimately led to this historical-fiction series. She has resided in all the places you will meet in The Chronicles of Iona: Exile, but now splits her time between Boston and a miniscule town in the Berkshires which has no school, post office, stores or traffic lights.  A husband, two kids and a standard poodle keep her occupied when she’s not in the 6th century.  She has other non-fiction books and academic articles to her name.  This is her first novel.