The Executioner's Cane, the final part of the gay-themed Gathandrian fantasy trilogy, is now published. It's available at Amazon and also as a free book at Smashwords and Omnilit Books. Here's the blurb:
Simon Hartstongue, accompanied by the mind-cane and the snow-raven, must travel back to the land he came from to offer support to the people he once tried to kill. From Gathandria, Annyeke Hallsfoot endeavours to help him but her attentions are focused on rebuilding the city after the wars.
Alone and faced with the anger of his people and hindered by the fragility of Ralph Tregannon's leadership, Simon has to find a way to bring healing to a dying country and to renew his relationship with Ralph. But the odds and time itself are stacked against him.
I've also been having some fun looking at picture lookalikes of the characters in the whole trilogy, now it's over and done with. This is my view of Simon the scribe (though of course he would wear more clothes!):
Here is his on-off lover Ralph Tregannon:
And here is my view of the Mind Executioner (evil but strangely attractive):
Hey ho. The whole trilogy has been such a hugely difficult and disappointing time that it's a relief to move on, though of course I do feel sad as I don't think I'll ever write anything that poetic or spiritual again. Which probably explains why a large percentage of readers don't like it much, saying it's too slow. Oh well. A heartfelt thank you to the little band of people who've at least enjoyed some of it - it's very much appreciated.
Interestingly, The Gifting (Gathandria 1) and Hallsfoot's Battle (Gathandria 2) have recently gained some European approval, being respectively at No 73 and No 7 in the Amazon France Foreign Fantasy charts, well gosh. And The Executioner's Cane itself was, equally strangely, at No 3 in the Amazon Brazil Foreign Gay charts, which was nice. Though, possibly, they don't have much of a choice over there - I'm not sure.
Meanwhile, gay erotica The Beginning of Knowledge gained a 4-star review at World of Diversity Reviews:
"A dark erotic short that isn't my usual type of read … So I started reading this with trepidation and, much to my surprise, I loved it … This is a really well written story about discovery of oneself written in a very sexy way."
Finally, over at Untreed Reads, we're celebrating the wedding this weekend of our renowned Editor-in-Chief Jay and his partner Luis - so many congratulations to both. As part of the party, you'll find all my Untreed Reads books at a 40% discount until Sunday - happy shopping!
This week on the A3, I drove past a police escort who was trying to guide a flock of lost ducks off the road and into safety. Never say we in Surrey are uncaring about our feathered friends, eh. I did think the ducks were actually being very sensible and walking in a line at the side of the road, so may not have needed the help, but never reject the support of a man in uniform is what my grandmother always said. And she was right. Apparently, all the ducks are now in a local farmer's shed, unscathed by the trauma, and the police canteen is perfecting its orange sauce. No, really, those last few words were a joke, honest! But the rest is perfectly true.
And, unbelievable though it may sound, we had a gunman on the village green on Thursday afternoon - which explains the sudden influx of police cars all over the place and the presence of a police helicopter all afternoon and into the night. No harm done though - apparently he just wanted to show everyone his air rifle, hey ho. He was arrested and charged Thursday night, and the rifle duly destroyed. Honestly, Elstead is becoming the new Midsomer. Funny how it used to be a really peaceful place until K and I moved in ...
Anyway, should any stray gunmen be lurking in the shed, I have a plan to distract them with cake. Today's effort is Coffee & Walnut, and very tasty it is too.
Tomorrow, K and I are at Glyndebourne to see Hippolyte et Aricie - which explains the earlier blog. To keep you going, here's an important life rule - trust me, it works like a dream:
Have a great weekend.