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‘Black Dragonfly’ – Debut Novel by Jean Pasley

We are delighted to announce the upcoming release of Jean Pasley’s novel ‘Black Dragonfly’ based on the remarkable experiences of the Irish writer Lafcadio Hearn.

Over a century after his death, nomadic Irish writer, Patrick Lafcadio Hearn remains one of the most famous Westerners ever to make Japan his home. In this richly imagined novel, Jean Pasley explores not only Hearn’s stark, lonely childhood in Ireland and his scandalous time in America but also how Japan changed him and how he went on to become one of Japan’s most celebrated and cherished writers.

Dublin-born writer and filmmaker Jean Pasley spent ten years in Japan. Her screenplays have won numerous awards, the most recent being The Audience Award at Cork International Film Festival 2020 for The Bright Side on which she was co-writer. Her new short film, Ship of Souls, which she directed, was also inspired by Hearn and is due for release shortly. She now lives in Dublin, close to one of Hearn’s childhood homes. This is her first novel. Jean Pasley is also a member of the Ireland Japan Association (IJA).

 

A lavish, beautiful testimony to the life and achievements of Lafcadio Hearn. – Frank McGuinness

 

The story of a complex and troubled man, as he tries to come to terms with his life and at the same time, negotiate the ancient, mysterious and fast-changing civilisation of nineteenth century Japan. – Christine Dwyer Hickey

 

An alluring and absorbing tale and one of the most engaging and insightful books I have read in a long time. – Manchán Magan

 

Black Dragonfly is published by Balestier Press. Publication date: 15 April 2021.

You can preorder your copy online here:


ABOUT BALESTIER PRESS
Founded in 2015, Balestier Press is an independent publisher proudly presenting the hidden gems of contemporary world literature, picture books, comics/graphic novels and memoirs, with a focus on Asia, Pacific and Africa. We enable a greater variety of original voices to be heard by promoting writers, translators, and illustrators worldwide, with the belief that the beauty of literature, stories and thoughts can connect different cultures and people across borders.

Events

‘Black Dragonfly’ by Jean Pasley | Online Book Launch

We are delighted to invite you to an online book launch for ‘Black Dragonfly’ by Jean Pasley on Thursday, 22nd April at 7 p.m. via Zoom.

Jean will discuss inspirations behind her debut novel ‘Black Dragonfly’ based on the remarkable experiences of the Irish writer Lafcadio Hearn, and will read an extract from her new book.

Moderator: Prof. Mary Gallagher, UCD School of Languages, Cultures and Linguistics.

Date: Thursday, 22 April 2021
Time: 7-8 PM
Registration: This online event is free of charge and open to the IJA members and non members. Prior registration is required by Tuesday, 20th April via email: info@ija.ie. Zoom login details will be sent to all registered participants before the event.

Over a century after his death, nomadic Irish writer, Patrick Lafcadio Hearn remains one of the most famous Westerners ever to make Japan his home. In this richly imagined novel, Jean Pasley explores not only Hearn’s stark, lonely childhood in Ireland and his scandalous time in America but also how Japan changed him and how he went on to become one of Japan’s most celebrated and cherished writers.

Guest speakers:

  • Jean Pasley
    Dublin-born writer and filmmaker Jean Pasley spent ten years in Japan. Her screenplays have won numerous awards, the most recent being The Audience Award at Cork International Film Festival 2020 for The Bright Side on which she was co-writer. Her new short film, Ship of Souls, which she directed, was also inspired by Hearn and is due for release shortly. She now lives in Dublin, close to one of Hearn’s childhood homes. This is her first novel. Jean Pasley is also a member of the Ireland Japan Association.
  • Prof. Mary Gallagher
    Professor of French and Francophone Studies in University College Dublin. Most of her work centres on 20th century writing in French from beyond Metropolitan France, particularly from the Caribbean. In 2003-4, she published critical re-editions of the French translations of Lafcadio Hearn’s French Caribbean writings (collected in Two Years in the French West Indies). More recently, she published articles on Hearn’s (Creole) storytelling and on the Creole continuum in his American writings. She is currently completing two studies of some of Hearn’s New Orleans stories and sketches. Prof. Gallagher has lectured on Hearn’s migrancy not just in Ireland, but also in France and Greece, as well as in Japan and in the United States. She serves on the UCD Japan Committee, and she is the current convenor of UCD’s Asia-Pacific Research Network.