Where Rockets Burn Through!

If you’re stuck for a gift for the sci-fi fan in your life, and a slogan t-shirt isn’t going to cut it, Penned in the Margins might just have the answer.

New anthology, Where Rockets Burn Through: contemporary science fiction poems from the UK, is not only beautifully designed (Sunstreaker and Wheeljack seem to think so, anyway) but also makes for a laser-firing, catsuit-sporting blast-off of a poetry mission.

Jon and I pop up a few times inside (he re-jigs Catullus into space opera while I salivate over the precious meal from Soylent Green), alongside some seriously spark-spitting other writers.

Gifting poems to those who are usually more fond of box sets than tercets may seem like a risky gambit, but editor Russell Jones has picked a rich range of moreish work that, while intriguing and substantial, won’t alienate (apologies for that one) anyone coming to poetry afresh. Poetry has a knack of providing an off-kilter, probing new look at classic tropes and well-loved stories, and this is a real genre-zapper.

Where Rockets Burn Through: contemporary science fiction poems from the UK is normally £9.99 plus p&p, but until 21 December, Penned are offering 20% off,so you can snaffle it for £7.99 plus postage.

Kirsty’s book is loose – catch it quick!

Never Never Never Come Back is out now from Salt Publishing! Available initially in a limited hardback run, with gorgeous hotfoiling under a dust jacket featuring artwork by the very talented Matt Latchford.

Here’s the spiel!

Don’t go over the hill, or look too long into the well, or go carousing with strangers, or you’ll never never never come back. With the haunting quality of nursery rhymes but the complexity of a dark and smoky wine, these poems brood on absence and abandonment, outcasts and anomalies, monstrosity and mistakes.

At the heart of the collection are a suite of tightly focused, often impressionistic character studies ranging from cannibals to schoolgirls, but Irving also finds space in the shadows for desperate love songs to pilots and robots, satiric odes to tyrants and deft engagements with popular and literary culture. Whether turning the features of a pinball table into an emotional debris field or recounting unnerving sexual encounters, these are rich and rangy poems of a defiantly unusual character that linger in the mind as much for their controlled dissonances as their uncompromising subject matter.


Huge thanks to Salt Publishing’s Chris Hamilton-Emery and my editor Roddy Lumsden. I could not be more stoked.

Stay tuned for launch details!

For review copies, please contact me on kirsten.irving@gmail.com.