The Abbey of Death – blurb and an update

Sorry everyone, I know I’ve been going on about this final Forest Lord novella for what seems like forever. I have actually finished it – it’s been edited and proofread, had a great cover designed and would, normally, have been published weeks ago.

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But I have, hopefully, found a publisher for it. This might not mean much to most people but, to me, it’s a huge opportunity going forward. If it comes off this will be my first book that isn’t self-published and MIGHT just pave the way for a deal for my new warrior-druid series. That’s in the distant future though, so for now I’m just trying to keep my feet on the ground and continue to work hard.

I’m hoping to have confirmation of the deal next week so publication isn’t THAT far off. And one beta-reader suggested it’s my best book so far, so it’s hopefully worth the wait and a good end to the overall series. In the meantime, here’s a blurb I knocked up, maybe it’ll whet your appetite. Chances are the publisher will come up with their own blurb but I think this sets the scene pretty well…

He wanted to find peace in prayer but some men serve God best with a sword in their hand.

England, 1328 AD

Will Scaflock has tried living the normal life of a farmer but, lonely and still haunted by the brutal murder of his family years earlier he decides to seek peace in God’s service. The Benedictine monks in Selby welcome him into their brotherhood but discipline in the abbey is lax, with openly flaunted vices like drink, prostitution and gambling angering not only the archbishop but the townsfolk as well.

When the people are goaded into a riot, wrecking much of the abbey, killing one of the wayward brothers and kidnapping the likeable cantor, the legendary former outlaw finds his God-given talent for violence called on once more.

Now, reunited with his old sword, Scaflock must find the abducted cantor before his captors realise he’s not worth as much as they hoped and, in the process, perhaps find God’s true purpose for his own continued existence.

Readers of Steven A. McKay’s Forest Lord series will love this pulsating adventure that explores the themes of loyalty, friendship, greed and ultimately, love, against the colourful yet brutal background of 14th century England.

“McKay brings down the curtain on the Forest Lord series with his best work to date.” – Parmenion Book Reviews

 

 

Final cover for Abbey of Death. Like it?

Thank you to all who voted on my new cover!

The response was really fantastic – the best I’ve had so far from you guys here and also on my mailing list, so thanks, I really appreciate your help with this. I honestly expected there to be a clear winner but in the end it was about a 50/50 split with many saying they liked the cleaner lines without the rosary, while lots really liked the interest the beads added.
So…I asked my designers to come up with something I hope will appeal to EVERYONE! Check it out below, I think it’s the ideal blend of both previous covers.

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On another note now, Wolf’s Head (book 1 in the Forest Lord series of course) is just 99c on Kindle USA for a few days, and the German edition of Knight of the Cross (Ritter des Kreuzes) is only €0.89 as part of the Amazon.de #indielesefestival promotion.

Cheers all!

Cover reveal for Abbey of Death – which is your favourite?

Here’s the artwork for the final Forest Lord novella…

I really love this art! It goes with the Will Scarlet novella, The Abbey of Death, in which he, disillusioned with a life spent as a mercenary and outlaw, becomes a Benedictine monk. Obviously, though, things don’t go quite to plan and soon he’s called back into action….

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A                                                                      B

The cover on the left was the first version (A), but I thought it might be a nice little touch to have some bloody rosary beads so my designers added them and came up with the cover on the right (B).

But I’m not sure which is best! I am thinking the simplicity of A is probably going to work well but I wanted to ask you guys, my most loyal readers, what you think? Please comment below and let me know what you think, it will be a great help.

The novella is finished (first draft), I just need my editor to go over it now and then tidy it up so I’m expecting it to be available for Kindle and paperback by March or April. Audio version will hopefully follow soon after although I’m not sure about that just yet.

My brand new book, The Druid (working title), is coming along and I’m really loving writing it. Still hopeful it will be ready to publish sometime around late summer/autum this year. I think you’re all going to love it!

Have a great weekend!

Steven

OUT NOW!

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