Halloween is this week and being Irish, Oiche Samhain or Halloween is a big celebration as well as a time of year I really like. Leaves changing colour, crisp sunny mornings, people dressed up, pumpkins to carve, fireworks and a time to catch up on those ghost stories make it a great time of year.
Traditionally Oiche Smahin marks the end of summer and the start of winter. Many Irish legends are said to have taken place at this time such as the Tuatha Dé Danann defeating their arch rivals, and hero Cuchulain being visited by the two beautiful women of the sidhe, Li Ban and Fand. It was also the time that is believed that the annual great Feast of Tara was held. These are the legends I grew up on and I can recommend that they are interesting to read.
But Halloween today is about scary goings on, magic and witches, wizards, devils and pumpkins. I believe Irish tradition contributed to this as on Oiche Samhain the border between our world and the underworld was merged so faeries and other mystical beings, good and evil could cross to the real world to cause some mischief. The dead could also return to the world for one night and in the past people would leave doors open and leave food for their dead relatives who may return home that night. Creepy…….
So as this is a book blog I have 2 great books I recommend reading if you haven’t already to make you Halloween even more scary! Ash by James Herbert and The Small Hand by Susan Hill which I have reviewed and will post soon.
I would love to hear about what you are planning to do for Halloween and other books you recommend as perfect Halloween reading.
p.s. check out our home made carved pumpkins below.