Extracts from Skellig

These are some of my favourite extracts from the book which basically sum up the story in six parts.














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Michael finds Skellig in the garage:

 ‘I thought he was dead. He was sitting with his legs stretched out, and his head tipped back against the wall.  He was covered in dust and webs like everything else and his face was thin and pale.  Dead bluebottles were scattered across his hair and shoulders. I shone the torch on his white face and his black suit.

“What do you want?” he said.

He opened his eyes and looked up at me.

His voice squeaked as though he hadn’t used it in years.

“What do you want?”

My heart thudded and thundered.

“I said, what do you want?”’

Michael and Mina see Skellig’s wings:

‘She unfastened the buttons on his jacket.  She began to pull his jacket down over his shoulders.

“No,” he squeaked.

“Trust me,” she whispered.

He didn’t move.  She slid the sleeves down over his arms, took the jacket right off him. We saw what both of us had dreamed we might see.  Beneath his jacket were wings that grew out through rips in his shirt. When they were released, the wings began to unfurl from his shoulderblades. They were twisted and uneven, they were covered in cracked and crooked feathers. They clicked and trembled as they opened. They were wider than his shoulders, higher than his head.  Skellig hung his head towards the floor.  His tears continued to fall. He whimpered with pain.  Mina reached out to him, stroked his brow.  She reached further and touched the feathers with her fingertips.

“You’re beautiful,” she whispered.

Goodbye, Skellig:

‘“We’ll remember for ever,” said Mina.

Skellig leaned over and hugged us both.

He licked a drop of red sauce from his lips.

“Thank you for 27 and 53,” he said.  “Thank you for giving me my life again.  Now you have to go home.”

Michael meets Mina (new friend):

‘“Are you the new boy here?” said somebody.

I turned round.  There was a girl’s head sticking over the top of the wall into the back lane.

“Are you the new boy?” she repeated.


“I’m Mina.”

I stared at her.

“Well?” she said.


She clicked her tongue and shook her head and said in a bored-sounding singsong voice, “I’m Mina.  You’re…”

“Michael,” I said.


Then she jumped back and I heard her land in the lane.

“Nice to meet you, Michael,” she said through the wall, then she ran away.

Skellig shows Michael and Mina how to fly:

‘I felt Skellig’s and Mina’s hearts beating along with my own. I felt their breath in rhythm with mine.  It was like we had moved into each other, as if we had become one thing.  Our heads were dark and then as big and moonlit as the night.  I couldn’t feel the bare floorboards against my feet. All I knew were the hands in mine, the faces turning through the light and the dark, and for a moment I saw ghostly whit wings at mina’s back, I felt the feathers and delicate bones rising from my own shoulders, and I was lifted from the floor with Skellig and Mina. We turned circles together through the empty air of that empty room high in an old house in Crow Road.

They name the baby at last (my favourite part):

‘Back in the kitchen, they were talking again about giving the baby a proper name.

“Persephone,” I said.

“Not that mouthful again,” said Dad.

We thought a little longer, and in the end we simply called her Joy.