Darren Shan with fans at the 2011 Surrey Libraries' Children's Book Festival
2 July 1972
|Pen name||Darren Shan, D. B. Shan, Darren Dash|
|Notable works||The Saga of Darren Shan, The Demonata|
Darren O'Shaughnessy (//; born 2 July 1972 promp in London, England), who commonly writes under the pen name Darren Shan, is an Irish author. Darren Shan is the main character in Shan's The Saga of Darren Shan young-adult fiction series. He also wrote The Demonata series as well as the stand-alone books, Koyasan and The Thin Executioner. The City Book Trilogy was written for older, adult readers. He has also written The Saga of Larten Crepsley which is based on The Saga of Darren Shan. He is currently publishing a new 12 novel series "Zom-B". The first book went on sale in September 2012, with the final book scheduled to see print in spring 2016.
- 1 Early life
- 2 Career
- 3 Personal life
- 4 Books
- 5 Film
- 6 References
- 7 External links
Shan was born on 2 July 1972 at St Thomas' Hospital, London. At the age of three, he started school at English Martyr's near the Elephant and Castle. When he was six, he moved with his parents and younger brother, to Limerick, where he has lived ever since.
He received his primary education in Askeaton, and attended secondary school at Copsewood College, Pallaskenry. He returned to London to pursue a degree in Sociology and English from Roehampton University.
Shan bought his first typewriter when he was fourteen and wrote many short stories, comic scripts, and books that he never finished. His first success came to him at age fifteen, when he was a runner-up in a TV script-writing competition for RTÉ in Ireland, with a dark comedy story entitled A Day in the Morgue. He finished his first novel at age seventeen. Mute Pursuit was never published, but he loved the writing experience, so he started focusing on novels more and not on short stories.
After university, Shan worked at a TV cable company in Limerick for two years, before becoming a full-time writer at the age of 23. His breakthrough came with Ayuamarca, written under his full name instead of a pen name. It was published in February 1999 by Orion Publishing Group, and did not sell very well. The sequel, Hell's Horizon, published in February 2000, was thought by some to be a better book, but sold fewer copies than the first. Ayuamarca was re-released in March 2008 under the title of Procession of the Dead and under the pen-name D.B Shan. Hell's Horizon followed in March 2009, and the third in the trilogy, City of the Snakes in March 2010 (but this time under the name of Darren Shan). In January 2000, Shan released Cirque du Freak, the first book of The Saga of Darren Shan series in the UK and Ireland. The series was a huge global success and by 2012 his books were on sale in 39 countries, in 31 languages, and had sold in excess of twenty million copies worldwide.
Shan is in possession of thousands of films and collects original artwork. He enjoys reading books and comic books, taking long walks, watching football, listening to pop and rock music, and travelling worldwide both to promote his works and for leisure. He is a huge Tottenham Hotspur and Republic of Ireland football fan.
The Saga of Darren Shan
(Also known as "Cirque Du Freak Series")
- Cirque Du Freak (ISBN 0316605107)
- The Vampire's Assistant (0316905720/0316606847)
- Tunnels of Blood (0316607630)
A short novel released for World Book Day in the UK in 2006. It is now out of print. It has also been translated and released in several other countries.
|This article lacks ISBNs for the books listed in it. (December 2010)|
The Demonata is a ten-book series.
- Lord Loss
- Demon Thief
- Blood Beast
- Demon Apocalypse
- Death's Shadow
- Wolf Island
- Dark Calling
- Hell's Heroes
The City Trilogy
The City Trilogy was written for adult readers and was originally released under the name of Darren O'Shaughnessy. The third book was never published and the original versions are now out of print. They were published by Orion Publishing Group. However, in March 2008, Ayuamarca was re-published as Procession of the Dead (with substantial changes) by the Voyager imprint of Harper Collins (Shan's children's publisher). Hell's Horizon was released in March 2009 and City of the Snakes was released in March 2010. All three books are now also available in the US, as well as in several other countries.
- Ayuamarca – Renamed Procession of the Dead – First published in the United Kingdom in February 1999 and later in Russia. Re-released in the UK in March 2008.
- Hell's Horizon – Sequel to Ayuamarca. First published in the United Kingdom in February 2000. Re-released in March 2009.
- City of the Snakes – Last book of The City Trilogy. It came out in the United Kingdom on the first of March 2010.
The Thin Executioner
A one-off novel, The Thin Executioner was released in April 2010. Inspired in part by The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn and based in a brutal, fantastical world, it details the perilous quest of Jebel, the thin son of a respected executioner, to petition a fire god for invincibility, so that he can succeed his father.
Jebel Rum is a thin, scrawny boy. His father is the famed executioner in the city where they live. When Jebel is humiliated in public, he sets off on a quest to gain great strength and invincibility. If successful, he will be able to compete in a gruelling contest to prove himself and replace his father as the wielder of the axe. Failure, on the other hands, means certain death.
To win the favour of a fire god, Jebel must make a human sacrifice. He finds a slave who is willing to pay this grisly price, and the pair set off on a trek through lands deadly and unwelcoming. In the course of their travels they will encounter hatred, bigotry, slavery, death and more.
Shan has often stated that this is his favourite out of all of the books he has written over the years
The Saga of Larten Crepsley
This is a four-book series covering 200 years in the life of Larten Crepsley, a vampire first introduced to readers in Cirque Du Freak.
- Book 1, Birth of a Killer. Released in the UK and US in October 2010.
- Book 2, Ocean of Blood. Released in UK and US in April 2011.
- Book 3, Palace of the Damned. Released in UK and US in September 2011.
- Book 4, Brothers to the Death. Released in UK and US in April/May 2012.
On 12 October 2011, it was announced that Darren Shan's next series for teenagers would focus on zombies, and that the title of the series was Zom-B. There will be twelve books in total. The first book was released in the UK and USA in late September 2012, and the sequels are following at a rate of one every three months, except for the last two books, where the gap is approximately six months. On 7 March 2012, Darren Shan gave a world exclusive reading of the prologue of the first book in the Dubai collage, Dubai. Darren revealed that the name of the first book is simply Zom-B. The second book's title was released as Zom-B Underground and is about B waking up in a military facility with no memory months after the initial attack of the zombies and being put into a military regime. B begins wondering about the zombies the scientists are keeping and why they chose to save B in the first place, and who can be trusted. The third book is called Zom-B City. It is about B and what happens when she comes out of the underground and back outside into the city. The fourth is Zom-B Angels, and focuses on what happens when B meets up with a group of teenagers who are fighting to restore order to the living. The fifth is called Zom-B Baby and it sees B encounter a figure from the dreamworld of her past. The sixth is called Zom-B Gladiator and details what happens when B falls into the clutches of a group of power-hungry tyrants.
- Zom-B, released in the UK on 27 September 2012.
- Zom-B Underground, released in the UK on 3 January 2013.
- Zom-B City, released in the UK on 14 March 2013.
- Zom-B Angels, released in the UK on 20 June 2013.
- Zom-B Baby, released in the UK on 26 September 2013.
- Zom-B Gladiator, released in the UK on 2 January 2014.
- Zom-B Mission, released in the UK on 27 March 2014.
- Zom-B Clans, released in the UK on 3 July 2014.
- Zom-B Family, released in the UK on 25 September 2014.
- Zom-B Bride, released in the UK on 24 February 2015.
- Zom-B Fugitive, to be published in the UK in September 2015
- Untitled twelfth book, to be published in the UK in April 2016
A short novel titled Zom-B Circus, set between Zom-B Mission and Zom-B Clans, was released on 27 April 2014. This is officially book 7.5 in the series chronology.
Lady of the Shades
Darren Shan's next book for adults was the stand-alone novel Lady of the Shades. It was released in the UK and Ireland on 30 August 2012.
The Evil and the Pure
The evil and the pure was Darren's next adult novel, written under the pen name Darren Dash, so that the book would not be confused with his children's books. Darren plans to write the rest of his adult books under this pen name from this point onwards. 
Online short spin-off stories
- "An Essay on Vampires" "by" Steve Leopard – book 1 tie-in story.
- "Annie's Diary" – book 1 tie-in story.
- "Tiny Terrors" – book 2 tie-in story.
- "Transylvania Trek" – a short story "written" by Sam Grest.
- "Shanta Claus" (only available at Christmas)
- "Lonely Lefty" – book 3 tie-in story.
- "Bride of Sam Grest" – another short story "written" by Sam Grest.
- "An Affair of the Night" – book 5 tie-in story (should be read just before or after book 5).
- "Hagurosan" – Originally written for Kids' Night In.
- "Young Alan Moore" – Originally written for Alan Moore: Portrait of an Extraordinary Gentleman, a book written to celebrate the 50th birthday of Alan Moore.
- "The Good Ship Tree" – Originally written for the Times Educational Supplement, and accepted.
- "Life's a Beach" – Originally written for the Times Educational Supplement, but rejected.
- "Guyifesto—Who We Are" – Originally written for Guys Write For Guys Read. (Play on words of "manifesto")
- The Saga of Darren Shan tie-in short stories – See above
In July 2009, Shan revealed that he has written first drafts of 53 books in total. 31 of those are published or due for publication over the next few years. The rest include some books that he is working on for the future, along with some he might one day return to and publish, and others that he will probably never do anything more with. Two of the unpublished books are Mute Pursuit and The Cannibal King:
- Mute Pursuit – A futuristic cross between The Terminator and Stephen King's The Dark Tower; this was Shan's first completed book at age seventeen.
- The Cannibal King – This was originally going to be the 12th book of The Saga of Darren Shan – book 11 was originally meant to be much longer, including elements from the first half of what became Sons of Destiny. The Cannibal King was never published because it was originally part of the planned 24-book Saga. Shan had planned to write 18—24 books for The Saga, with half of them taking place in the future wasteworld shown in Book 10, The Lake of Souls. For reasons explained on his web site, Shan decided to end the series with Sons of Destiny, which was written and released instead of The Cannibal King. He never reveals anything that he wrote in this book, because there is a possibility that he might one day write a follow-up series to The Saga, which would take parts of this book as its starting point.
Universal Studios bought the film rights to the first three books of The Saga of Darren Shan and combined them to make a single film, Cirque du Freak: The Vampire's Assistant, released in the US on 23 October 2009. Lauren Shuler Donner produced the film and Paul Weitz directed. The original screenplay was written by Brian Helgeland but rewritten entirely by Paul Weitz.
- "Darren Shan Biography". Retrieved 2008-06-06.
- "Biography". Retrieved 2008-06-06.
- "About Darren – Darren Shan – Author of Horror and Fantasy Books". Darren Shan. Retrieved 2012-02-25.
- "The City Trilogy". DB Shan. Retrieved 2010-01-17.
- "The Thin Executioner". Retrieved 2012-02-06.
- "Shan moves from HC to S&S for Zom-B". The Bookseller. Retrieved 2012-02-25.
- "ZOM-B 8". Amazon.co.uk. Retrieved 28 April 2014.
- "Zom-B #9". Amazon.co.uk. Retrieved 28 April 2014.
- "Zom-b: 10". Amazon.co.uk. Retrieved 28 April 2014.
- http://www.darrendashbooks.com/. Missing or empty
- Darren Shan website
- Darren Shan talks about Cirque du Freak
- Darren Shan lists his favourite books at bookarmy.com
- Darren Shan reads extracts from his books for an hour as part of the One & Other art installation in Trafalgar Square
- Darren Shan at the Internet Movie Database
- Interview with Darren Shan on Veronika Asks
- Darren Shan Interview with Scottish Book Trust, October *[http://www.limerickcity.ie/Library/LocalStudies/LocalStudiesFiles/W/Writers-GeneralFictionDrama/ Darren Shan in 'Writers – Fiction' file at Limerick City Library, Ireland] 2009 (audio)
- Darren Shan at the Internet Speculative Fiction Database