Weapons Free!

I often get asked when the next installment of The Empire Dance will come out. (When I say often, I mean at least two people have expressed interest in it. That’s good enough for me.) More on that to come, but it did make me wonder if I ought to give the first four volumes of the series a bit of a clean-up – Echoes of War first came out in 2010, and I’ve learned a fair bit since then. Plus, the cover art was  rather… yeah. Not good.

So I’ve disabled all the old paperback versions, and decided to retire the series from Smashwords – no offence to Mark Coker, but I don’t think anybody goes to Smashwords for decent genre fiction these days. I certainly can’t remember the last time I bought anything from there.

Volume by volume, I’ve worked my way through the series and quietly reissued them through the Kindle Unlimited programme (much as I may dislike Amazon’s chokehold on digital fiction). Echoes of War was the first to benefit, of course, with a couple of additional scenes and a bit of tightening up, as well as some funky new cover art. I’ve taken the opportunity to tweak the hyperlinks inside too, because by ‘eck it needed it. All of the first four titles – Echoes, Midwinter Fury, The Kiiren Boy, and The Packard Defence – are out with spiffing new artwork, and if you’re not a big fan of the Unlimited package then you can still grab them all for less than the price of two cups of coffee. Good value, what?

You want to see those covers? Eh? Go on then….

You can find out more about each book by using this site’s menu – see the Empire Dance there? Go on…. dare ya.

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Why You Might Want To Tune In to SFFWorld Next Friday

Well, I’m not saying SFFWorld has an exclusive cover reveal for The High King’s Vengeance, scheduled for 6pm on Friday 19th February… but I’m not saying that they don’t either.

Alright, you got me. Yes, they do. If you don’t already read or subscribe to that rather excellent site, go on – sign up. They’re good people. 🙂

The Long Road to The High King’s Vengeance Starts Here!

The best thing about Heir To The North (apart from all the other things, of course!) is that the story doesn’t end there. Baum’s quest is completed, he has won, Malessar’s Curse has been broken, and now Cassia can see the enormity of what she has done.

So, what’s next? That’s what all the cool folks want to know. And, as it happens, there is an answer. That answer is The High King’s Vengeance, the second half of the story. This is the one with dragons and princes. This is the one with armies of stone and desperate duels. This is the one with romance and revelations. This is the one where Cassia comes to terms with herself and returns to Caenthell and the North.

Now all I have to do is let my editor beat the actiony action into it.

And all you have to do, for now at least, is add it to your TBR lists on Goodreads.

And soon – maybe not today, maybe not tomorrow, but soon – we’ll be revealing the finished cover art for The High King’s Vengeance, and you’ll get your first look at Cassia’s new companion for this second half of her journey…

Heir To The North: Cover Reveal!

It’s here!

Heir To The North
Heir To The North

If you need a reminder, here’s the deal:

The Warlock Malessar destroyed Caenthell centuries ago, murdering the High King Jedrell and his bride, and cursing the land itself. Since that time, the mountain kingdom has become little more than a dark legend, and the bloodline of the High Kings has been lost.

Until now.

Old soldier Baum and heroic warrior Meredith seek to defeat Malessar and his foul curse. Conscripted into their quest, young Cassia quickly realises she could make her name as a storyteller by witnessing such an epic confrontation. But neither of her companions are quite as they appear, and the truth lies deep within stories Cassia has not yet heard.

By the time she discovers that both Baum and the Warlock have hidden devastating secrets from each other for centuries, it may be too late. Cassia must decide which side she will stand upon and for whom she will fight – for Malessar, or for The Heir To The North.

Coming in paperback and e-formats from Kristell Ink/Grimbold Books in Summer 2015, The Heir to the North is an epic fantasy of legends, love, and slow revenge.

That’s Meredith and Cassia right there on the cover – ready for action, ready to take the fight to Malessar, ready to reclaim Caenthell. I love the traditional feel of this – it’s about the characters themselves, rather than a slightly abstract object (with apologies to fans of slightly abstract objects – I have nothing against you!), and I think it reflects the tone of the first stage of Cassia’s journey and the way she sees that quest herself. Optimism and heroics, that’s what Cassia wants! Ah, naivety… 🙂

Our artist, Jorge Torres (you can see his work here) has done a proper spiffing job on this. His work on the cover for the sequel, The High King’s Vengeance, takes it to another (darker, more desperate) level – but that, dear reader, is a reveal for another day…

Meanwhile, if this tempts you to adding it to your TBR pile, here’s a link to Goodreads… 🙂

Announcement of imminent Announcement!

I have news!

The news is that there will be fresh news next weekend!

Yes, I am announcing the announcement of an announcement. It may have something to do with a book cover.

What book cover, you may ask. Perhaps it is this one?

The Sinner's Daughter, by Gillian O'Rourke - available late 2015!
The Sinner’s Daughter, by Gillian O’Rourke – available late 2015!

No, it is not that one. Bloody good cover though. Add it to your TBR list on Goodreads!

Perhaps it is this one?

Green Sky & Sparks, by Kate Coe - available later this year!
Green Sky & Sparks, by Kate Coe – available later this year!

No, it is not that one either. Again, however, that’s a stunning piece of work. Makes me want to read it. How ’bout you?

What about this one?

ooooh - shiny!
ooooh – shiny!

Oooooh, shiny! Stop trying to distract me. No, these are not the covers you are after. Here – I’ll give you a clue….

Teaser sketch!
Teaser sketch

Oooooh – shiny!

That’s my line. Stop it. Want more? Want to see the whole shebang? Keep your eyes on Kristell Ink’s website for the full reveal!

Cover Uncovered!

It’s been a long time coming – but it’s here at last! The Packard Defence, the long-delayed fourth part of The Empire Dance, is heading into the final stretch of edits and jiggery-pokery and that means, amongst other things, trying to work out a decent cover design.

It may not have escaped your notice that all three books thus far released have featured a variation on a single image on their covers. This time around, I’ve gone in a far less abstract direction. So without any further ado, this is the cover for The Packard Defence…

The Packard Defence
ED4: The Packard Defence