Galway fairytale books make the perfect Christmas gifts

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Author Martha Begley Schade has published a second series of children’s stories following the success of her Merlin Woods Series.

With children’s issues at the heart of the Merlin Fairy Series, these books address difficult topics and bring them to the fore through the experiences of fairies in the woods.

The new books touch on the importance of apologising, the limits to playing pranks, the benefits of including others who are different to ourselves, family breakups, and ideas on coping with anxiety.

The first series, the Merlin Woods series dealt with topics such as bullying, friendship, kindness, teamwork, finding good guidance in life, and depression.

Suitable as educational material, these beautiful books, crafted, written and printed in Ireland, also make a lovely gift.

Ideally suited for children aged five years and upwards – and adults like them just as much.

Martha said that it is wonderful to meet grandmothers who have done Mamó sessions with these books.

“One lady told me how she invited her grandchildren from different households to come to her home on five consecutive Tuesdays at 7pm,” she said.

“No devices were allowed but they would get chicken nuggets, cocktail sausages or whatever their hearts desire. Then they all sat down to do a storytelling session and chat afterwards.

“Golden Memories were made. Who would have thought that encouraging storytelling sessions was something novel? It was the way I was brought up.”

Martha comes from a long line of traditional storytellers. Originally from Croom, County Limerick, she came to Galway in the 80s where she gained her degree in physics and maths.

Later years saw her join so many others in emigrating. Her path took her to Germany. After 22 years she returned to her beloved town of Galway to settle with her children.

It was during these years that she cemented her love for Merlin Woods in Galway and the power of supporting children’s development through storytelling. 

The books are available as individual books or compilation books in all good stores or can be ordered online, where you can read more about them: