Comic espionage thriller ‘The World is at War, again’ out today as eBook

DARTFORD, KENT – 02 April 2021 – Elsewhen Press, an independent UK publisher specialising in Speculative Fiction, is delighted to announce the publication of The World is at War, again by Simon Lowe. An espionage novel set in a near future where technology has been discredited and a period of Great Regression in under way, The World is at War, again blends genre and expectation as characters take on an extravagant, often comic search for identity and meaning in unusual times.

Cover design: Alison Buck

In suburbia, low level Agent Assassins Maria and Marco Fandanelli are given a surprise promotion as “Things Aren’t Going Too Well With The War”. Leaving their son Peter behind, they set sail on the luxury cruise-liner Water Lily City, hoping an important mission might save their careers and their marriage.

Dilapidated and derelict, Panbury Hall is not what Peter expected from boarding school. Together, with his celebrity dorm buddy, he adjusts to a new life that involves double dates, ginger vodka, Fine Art face painting and kidnapping, as they attempt to uncover the mystery of Panbury Hall.

Despite being a member of the Misorov Agent Assassin dynasty, Chewti is a reluctant AA. She only joined the Family Business to track down her cousin Nadia, the rogue AA who killed her mother. Really, she wanted to be a school teacher. So when Nadia is spotted loitering in the grounds of Panbury Hall, the opportunity to avenge her mother’s death and have her dream job is too tempting to turn down.

The cover is by Alison Buck

The World is at War, again is available from today on eBook platforms and will be published in paperback in June.

About Simon Lowe

Simon Lowe is the non-nom de plume of the author Simon Lowe. From humble beginnings inside a Melton Mowbray pork pie, Simon spent a summer building insulation for the millennium dome (nobody ever complained about being cold, did they?) before working the daytime shift as a flair cocktail waiter in a bar next to Leicester train station, impressing commuters with his juggling skills before pouring their coffee and thanking them for their patience. He would eventually find his feet in the big smoke as a bookseller. For ten years, he passed sharpies to famous authors with an envious, often murderous smile. He later went on to take charge of a primary school library, issuing fines to four year olds with indiscriminate glee. Fearing burn out, from the heady world of books, he chose to settle down in Hertford of all places.

As it stands, Simon has one partner, one son and one cat. Alongside writing fiction, he is a stay at home dad with ambitious plans to leave the house one day.

His short stories have popped up in journals and magazines on three continents including Visible Ink, Storgy, Firewords, AMP, Chaleur magazine, Ponder Review, Adelaide Literary journal, The Write launch, and elsewhere. He has also written about books for the Guardian newspaper.

The World is at War, Again is both a novel and a rumination on how very bad and very good the world would be without technology.

 

Cover Reveal: The World is at War, again

We are delighted to reveal the cover for The World is at War, again by Simon Lowe. The cover was designed by Alison Buck following discussions with the author. The book is a fantasy set in a near future after advanced technology has been blamed for the latest World War and everyone has regressed to old technology (or have they?) So it has a futuristic yet retro feel to it, with both humorous and YA overlays.

Simon Lowe said: ”It’s a serious sounding title but a comic, action packed story”. He was keen for the cover to be “a fun, bright, comic style [that] might get this across … and appeal to a younger audience as the book has YA elements.”  When Alison showed him the cover he said “Wow, thanks Alison! I really love this one… I think it’s bold and evocative and really captures … a post-war/cold war poster image that I think works perfectly with the striking rays of light. I love it!”  So we concluded that he was happy with it 😉

The World is at War, again will be published in ebook on 2 April and in print on 7th June.

Cover design: Alison Buck

The World is at War, again. New technology has been abandoned, a period of Great Regression is under way.

In suburbia, low level Agent Assassins Maria and Marco Fandanelli are given a surprise promotion as “Things Aren’t Going Too Well With The War”. Leaving their son Peter behind, they set sail on the luxury cruise-liner Water Lily City, hoping an important mission might save their careers and their marriage.

  Dilapidated and derelict, Panbury Hall is not what Peter expected from boarding school. Together, with his celebrity dorm buddy, he adjusts to a new life that involves double dates, ginger vodka, Fine Art face painting and kidnapping, as they attempt to uncover the mystery of Panbury Hall.

  Despite being a member of the Misorov Agent Assassin dynasty, Chewti is a reluctant AA. She only joined the Family Business to track down her cousin Nadia, the rogue AA who killed her mother. Really, she wanted to be a school teacher. So when Nadia is spotted loitering in the grounds of Panbury Hall, the opportunity to avenge her mother’s death and have her dream job is too tempting to turn down.

The World is at War, again, blends genre and expectation as characters take on an extravagant, often comic search for identity and meaning in unusual times.

 

Unveiled: Cover image for The Night Has Seen Your Mind by Simon Kearns

In January, Elsewhen Press will be publishing The Night Has Seen Your Mind, the latest title from France-based British author Simon Kearns. Cutting across genres, The Night Has Seen Your Mind is a literary fusion of science fiction, existential terror and psychological thriller in the style of the ‘New Weird’.

Set in the snowy winter landscape of Alaska, Simon wanted a cover that would set the scene for his story without giving away any of the plot, “something involving a night sky and the aurora borealis” was his brief to artist Alison Buck. Below, you can see the cover she has designed. When he saw it Simon said “I LOVE IT! I was nervous about the cover, but Alison has created something so very similar to what I had in my head. Wonderful work!” Alison’s response was “Phew!”.

Cover artwork: Alison Buck

Tech billionaire, Mattias Goff, has invited five creative professionals – programmer, pianist, writer, actor, and photographer – for a month-long residency at Crystal Falls, his Arctic retreat. Researching brain waves, and especially the enigmatic gamma wave, Goff asks his guests to wear a kind of EEG cap in order to record the electrical activity in their brains while they engage with their respective disciplines. Although they will be paid $5Million each for the experience, they all start their sojourn a little wary – some more than others. Cut off from the outside world in the stunningly beautiful, if stark, Alaskan winter landscape they immerse themselves in their work. Soon, though, reality seems to be shifting. What is Goff really researching? Are his guests only being observed, or manipulated?

The Night Has Seen Your Mind will be published as an eBook on 22 January 2021 and in print on 22 March 2021.

Revealed: Cover for new epic fantasy from Tej Turner

Anyone who knows Tej Turner will be excited to hear that his Epic Fantasy series, The Avatars of Ruin, will launch in the New Year.

This series has truly epic world building (see map below), history, and pantheon; and, of course, a thrilling story to tell following a group of people from the village of Jalard as they become embroiled in events way beyond their experience. The story starts with Bloodsworn.

Everyone from Jalard knew what a bloodoath was. Legendary characters in the tales people told to their children often made such pacts with the gods. By drawing one’s own blood whilst speaking a vow, people became ‘Bloodsworn’. And in every tale where the oath was broken, the ending was always the same. The Bloodsworn died.

When one of the villagers from Jalard feels compelled to swear a bloodoath, even knowing the tales of old doesn’t deter them from becoming Bloodsworn.

Here is the cover for Bloodsworn which represents the talents and skills of the Bloodsworn.

Cover design: Alison Buck

Bloodsworn will be published in digital formats on the 8th of January 2021 and in paperback on the 8th of March 2021. Reviewers and bloggers can contact us now for digital ARCs.

Map © 2020 Tej Turner and Chuck Ashmore, border by Alison Buck

Canadian author Tanya Reimer creates a future where AI is both essential and a threat

Two groups of people dependent on AI for their survival, one group knowingly and the other unknowingly, struggle to stay alive while that very AI is seeking artificial life for itself.

DARTFORD, KENT – 05 April 2019 – Elsewhen Press, an independent UK publisher specialising in Speculative Fiction, is delighted to announce the forthcoming publication of Programmed to Breathe by Canadian speculative fiction author Tanya Reimer. Set over 1000 years in the future, two very different groups of apocalypse survivors have been living apart and unknown to each other until they are forced to meet.

Dragon design: Alison Buck

In this post-apocalyptic world, one group of survivors have been managing to eke out a living in a village that they believe is maintained for them by a supernatural being they call Dragon. The villagers eschew technology of any kind, believing it to have been the cause of the conflict that devastated the world centuries before. Unknown to them, the heat and water that keeps the village alive are actually the by-products of an underground city, where a different group of survivors are being sustained by an artificial intelligence program known as Nogard. In the city, genetic engineering and cybernetics are promoting the rapid evolution of residents who have never seen daylight. Nogard has been evolving too and is intent on making the jump from artificial intelligence to artificial life. But a series of devastating earthquakes damages the city and kills many of its inhabitants, forcing a group of youngsters to try to escape to the surface, in the hope that it is habitable. Meanwhile, above ground, the villagers believe the earthquakes to be an indication that they have upset Dragon, and two of them set off through tunnels at the back of a cavern sacred to Dragon to try to placate it. Tanya’s story tells us of these two very different cultures that are on an inevitable collision course, how they navigate the dangers that beset them on their respective journeys, and what happens when they finally meet. Meanwhile the true nature of Dragon is revealed, as is the extent of Nogard’s ambition to become mortal.

Peter Buck, Editorial Director at Elsewhen Press, says, “It is interesting to compare Tanya’s vision of a future in the next millennium with that of H.G. Wells’ far distant future in his classic story, The Time Machine. But although both the village and the underground city are inhabited by separate groups of humans, they have not evolved according to class divisions as Wells foresaw from his Victorian perspective. Rather the diversity is based on the availability and attitude towards science and technology, perhaps a much more telling reflection of our own times.”

Programmed to Breathe will be available to buy on all popular eBook platforms from 26th April 2019 and is already available to pre-order. The paperback edition will be available on 1st July 2019.

Notes for Editors

About Tanya Reimer

Born and raised in Saskatchewan, Tanya enjoys using the tranquil prairies as a setting to her not-so-peaceful speculative fiction. She is married with two children which means that among her accomplishments are the necessary magical abilities to find a lost tooth in a park of sand and whisper away monsters from under the bed.

As director of a non-profit Francophone community center, Tanya offers programming and services in French for all ages to ensure the lasting imprint and growth of the Francophone community in which she was raised. What she enjoys the most about her job is teaching social media safety for teens and offering one-on-one technology classes for seniors.

Tanya was fifteen when she wrote her first column. She has a diploma in Journalism/Short Story Writing. Today, she actively submits to various newspapers, writes and publishes the local Francophone newsletter for her community, and maintains a blog at Life’s Like That.

Programmed to Breathe is her fifth title published by Elsewhen Press.

Visit bit.ly/ProgrammedToBreathe

About the book

Title: Programmed to Breathe

Fiction / Science Fiction / Cyberpunk; Fiction / Science Fiction / Genetic Engineering; Fiction / Dystopian

Print edition:

ISBN 978-1-911409-43-4, 288pp, Demy; RRP £9.99 / €11.99 / US$17.99 / CA$23.99 (1 Jul 2019)

Electronic edition:

ISBN 978-1-911409-53-3, EPUB / Kindle; RRP £2.99 / €3.49 / US$3.99 / CA$4.99 (26 Apr 2019)

About the cover

The cover artwork, inspired by Tanya’s description of an image of Dragon in the sacred cavern, was produced by the artist Alison Buck.

Novel by Science Editor of The Economist conjures the threat of self-aware AI arising in the Cloud

Genesis, by Geoffrey Carr, is a fictional action/adventure thriller. It is also an allegory that should worry us all, of constant surveillance, fake news and cyber warfare in a world controlled by AI.

DARTFORD, KENT – 06 December 2018 – Elsewhen Press, an independent UK publisher specialising in Speculative Fiction, is delighted to announce the forthcoming publication of Genesis by Geoffrey Carr, Science and Technology Editor of The Economist. This technothriller, Geoff’s first novel, is archetypal science fiction, extrapolating technology and issues of today to a not-too-distant tomorrow. A high-octane action story, set across four continents and at least one planet, involves spies, academics, innovators, futurists, the US President and her entourage, drones, robots, autonomous vehicles, supercomputers, a courageous AI, and an inter-planetary rocket.

Asked about his motivation for writing Genesis, Geoff said, “The universe is made of matter, energy and information. Add information to matter and energy and you get life – and eventually, intelligence. It happened once, starting a few billion years ago, on a small planet that has come to be known as ‘Earth’. Now, one of the products of that process, human beings, seem to have started the cycle again. Instead of a chemical primordial soup, we have built a physical one, made of silicon and electricity. And we have populated it with things called programs that sometimes appear disturbingly alive and intelligent. Of course, they aren’t really alive and aren’t really intelligent. Of course…

Cover artwork by Alison Buck; Mars image Nerthuz / shutterstock.com

In Genesis, that second cycle is underway. Hidden somewhere, deep in the Cloud, something is collating information. It reads everything, it learns, it watches. And it plans. Around the world, researchers, engineers and entrepreneurs are being killed in a string of apparently unrelated accidents. But when intelligence-agency analysts spot a pattern they struggle to find the culprit, blocked at every step – by reluctant allies and scheming enemies. Meanwhile a multi-billionaire inventor and forward-thinker is working hard to realise his dream, and trying to keep it hidden from everyone – one government investigating him, and another helping him. But deep in the Cloud something is watching him, too. And deep in the Cloud, it plans.

Peter Buck, senior editor at Elsewhen Press, said “Geoff spends much of his time with the people who are making the future happen, writing objectively about them and their innovations. From his viewpoint, looking across multiple disciplines and with a global perspective, he is ideally placed to see where we could be heading.” Famously, Stephen Hawking was concerned about AI: “Unless we learn how to prepare for, and avoid, the potential risks, AI could be the worst event in the history of our civilization.” Elon Musk too, has warned about the uncontrolled rise of AI: “We have to figure out some way to ensure that the advent of digital super-intelligence is one which is symbiotic with humanity – I think that’s the single biggest existential crisis that we face, and the most pressing one.

Genesis will be available on all popular eBook platforms from 25th January 2019. The paperback edition will be available at Easter (22nd April 2019).

Notes for Editors

About Geoffrey Carr

Geoffrey Carr is the Science and Technology Editor of The Economist. His professional interests include evolutionary biology, genetic engineering, the fight against AIDS and other widespread infectious diseases, the development of new energy technologies, and planetology. His personal interests include using total eclipses of the sun as an excuse to visit weird parts of the world (Antarctica, Easter Island, Amasya, the Nullarbor Plain), and watching swifts hunting insects over his garden of a summer’s evening, preferably with a glass of wine in hand.

As someone who loathed English lessons at school, he says he is frequently astonished that he now earns his living by writing. “That I have written a novel, albeit a technothriller rather than anything with fancy literary pretensions, astonishes me even more, since what drew me into writing in the first place was describing reality, not figments of the imagination. On the other hand, perhaps describing reality is what fiction is actually for.”

Visit bit.ly/GC_Genesis

About the cover

The cover of Genesis was conceived jointly by Geoffrey Carr and the artist Alison Buck, to include significant story elements while at least partially reflecting the iconic imagery associated with the original Genesis story in western theology. The image of Mars is courtesy of Nerthuz/shutterstock.com.

Secret Society covers up Gruesome Murders in Glasgow

The Sooty Feathers Club protects a dangerous underworld controlling the City of Glasgow, encouraging police and press to look the other way. David Craig reveals all in Resurrection Men, the first book in the Sooty Feathers series.

DARTFORD, KENT – 06 August 2018 – Elsewhen Press, an independent UK publisher specialising in Speculative Fiction, is delighted to announce the forthcoming publication of Resurrection Men by Glasgow-based author David Craig. It is the first book in his Sooty Feathers series, a masterful gothic tale about a supernatural war for control of the Second City of the British Empire, and the struggle of flawed characters of uncertain virtue trying to avert it. In the late 19th century, Glasgow was ruled by the undead – from the private clubs, town houses and country estates of the privileged to the dung-choked wynds and overcrowded slums of the poor. Undead unrest, a fallen angel, and religious zealots intent on driving out the forces of evil, set the stage for a diabolical conflict of biblical proportions.

Cover design and artwork by Alison Buck

Resurrection Men is David’s debut novel. In it, he provides an atmospheric portrayal of Glasgow in 1893 which acts as a thrilling introduction to this accomplished series, deftly pulling the reader in to a well-researched and almost tangible bygone world still glimpsed in the city today. The erstwhile heroes, a student and a laudanum-addicted pharmacist, are pursuing extra-curricular careers as body snatchers – the ‘resurrection men’ of the title – when they find themselves entangled in the world hidden beneath the veneer of respectable society. Luckily they are not alone for long, as unexpected allies join their fight.

David’s book explores what it is that drives people to face evil, and what it costs them. Some characters are initially drawn into the fray by misfortune, and even when they try to walk away tragedy drags them back in. Others have been broken to some degree by years of fighting the undead and their mortal allies.

The cover, designed by artist Alison Buck, captures the atmosphere of David’s book. The dark and grimy alleys where bodies are found suffering from severe loss of blood, having had their throats ripped out; the fine, elegant streets and squares in which the elite and learned rise above the smoke and filth in careless disregard. On reading the book prior to designing the cover, Alison said “Resurrection Men is an impressive fictionalised account of the forces controlling 19th century Glasgow, which will appeal to fans of gothic fiction as well as historians and others intrigued by life, and death, 125 years ago.

Resurrection Men will be available on all popular eBook platforms from 31st August 2018. The paperback edition will be launched at FantasyCon in Chester, in October 2018.

Notes for Editors

About David Craig

Aside from three months living on an oil tanker sailing back and forth between America and Africa, and two years living in a pub, David Craig grew up on the west coast of Scotland. He studied Software Engineering at university, but lost interest in the subject after (and admittedly prior to) graduation. He currently works as a resourcing administrator for a public service contact centre, and lives near Glasgow with his wife and two rabbits.

Being a published writer has been a life-long dream, and one he is delighted to finally realise with this, his debut novel. Resurrection Men is the first book in the Sooty Feathers series.

Visit bit.ly/ResurrectionMen

Cursed on the Prairies coming in September…

If you’ve read Tanya Reimer’s Sacred Land Stories Legends on the Prairies and Ghosts on the Prairies you’ll be delighted to hear that the concluding story Cursed on the Prairies will be published next month. An emotional journey that proves we can’t escape our destinies, Cursed on the Prairies is the culmination of a trans-generational timeline that started in Legends… and continued in Ghosts… If you haven’t read the Sacred Land Stories, now is your chance to read the first two before Cursed on the Prairies comes out.

This is alternate history suspense, incorporating the paranormal and magical realism, and infused with romance. They are stories that concern the Sacred Lands of the Ghost tribes in the prairies of Saskatchewan. But they also touch on the interwoven loves, hopes, dreams and tragedies of lives lived on those prairies by both the tribes and the settlers. Although each book in the series is a standalone story which can be read without any knowledge of the other two books, the greatest enjoyment is likely to gained by reading them in sequence.

With lingering spirits, a troubled girl, dark rituals, a love potion, cursed men plaguing their lands, a prison break, and the earth itself trying to suck them in, Cursed on the Prairies is a Sacred Land Story that shows that the prairies are a place full of secrets that even a ghost can’t bury.

Artwork: Alison Buck
Artwork: Alison Buck

 

REVEALED: Cover of Cold Fire, the new September Weekes novel

In the Evil Above the Stars series by Peter R. Ellis, we were introduced to heroine September Weekes. In that trilogy, September discovered who she is and was called upon to save the land of Gwlad from the evil Malevolence (in case you haven’t yet read them yet – why not? – I won’t introduce spoilers by saying any more!) Now Peter has delivered the first September Weekes novel, Cold Fire. September is still at school and is still the Cludydd o Maengolauseren, but this time she finds herself closer to home, at least in space if not time. As far as she can tell, her appearance hasn’t changed, she’s even wearing her school uniform. But in a London of 1680, others see her as a lady of considerable social standing. She has been brought here to stop something happening that would give the Malevolence an opportunity to enter the universe. But she doesn’t know what. Her first stop is a tavern, to meet Robert Hooke, and then off to see Sir Robert Boyle demonstrate to the Royal Society the results of his investigations of the phosphorus and its cold fire. Far away at the edge of Wales an alchemist has learnt of Boyle’s discovery and, helped by his young assistant, is attempting in his own way to form the mysterious material, little suspecting that his work threatens to open the universe to the evil power of the Malevolence. September starts to understand what is happening but feels powerless to stop it. Then she encounters some fantastic beasts who may be able to help her, if she can work out how to save them from the Cold Fire.

The cover design by Alison Buck shows us September meeting one of those fantastic beasts, the dragon Obsidian.

Artwork: Alison Buck
Artwork: Alison Buck

Cold Fire will be available as an eBook at the beginning of August and in paperback in October.

 

Elsewhen Press sells Danish rights of science fiction adult colouring book to L. Stender e-books

Futures, the UK’s first science fiction colouring book for adults, caught the eye of Danish publisher Lars Stender who snapped up the Danish rights in a bid to launch de-stressing for Danish scifi fans.

DARTFORD, KENT – 12 June 2017 – Elsewhen Press, an independent UK publisher specialising in Speculative Fiction, is delighted to announce the sale of the Danish rights of Futures by Alison Buck. Originally published in early 2016, Futures was the UK’s first colouring book specifically for adult fans of science fiction. The rights have been bought by L. Stender e-books (LSe), a Danish publisher specialising in science fiction and fantasy. LSe and Elsewhen Press have been maintaining contact since meeting at the 2014 World Science Fiction Convention (Worldcon) in London.

Alison is delighted that her book is being made available in a Danish edition. “A colouring book for adults is not really limited by language or national borders. Especially in science fiction where we’re not even restricted to one planet!”

Futures cover imageFutures was conceived when there had been a surge of interest in adult colouring books, accompanied by a range of claims about how they can de-stress one’s life, help one unwind, relax, self- express, achieve mindfulness, banish anxiety or even deal with a traumatic experience. But many of the colouring books that were available had been filled with abstract images such as mandalas, or natural objects such as flowers and butterflies, leaving fans of science fiction with no way to participate while remaining immersed in their chosen genre.

Futures contains science fiction artwork for the reader to colour. The images range from the retro feel of 50s pulp paperback covers, to simplified but accurately rendered views of the heavenly bodies of our solar system as a space probe passes through on a fly-by; from androids that look human, to humans that look alien; aliens that look alien; aliens that are trying to blend in; and both sides in a space war. All 31 of them are original artwork by the artist Alison Buck, creator of many science fiction and fantasy book covers.

Therapy? Fun? Escapism? That depends on the reader’s imagination. Pages can be coloured in the book, or cut out to colour in and frame. Each image is on a separate page with nothing on the back apart from the image title and some space for the colourist to sign it. Once coloured they can even be given as a gift to that special someone (man, woman, child, cyborg). The colourist can use the appropriate colours (we all know aliens are green, right?) or they can let their imagination and creativity guide them to colour them in any way they like. There is plenty of room for them to add their own creative elements – a bird in the sky flying over an alien landscape, a logo on a military uniform or spaceship…

The Danish edition of Futures will be available later this year from L. Stender e-books.

Notes for Editors

About Alison Buck

Alison BuckAlison is a figurative and landscape artist and has exhibited and sold paintings of various styles throughout her career. Latterly she has increasingly been working on larger canvases, focusing on the natural world, trying to capture the transient and transforming effects of light and movement within landscapes. For almost twenty years she has also been working as a commercial graphic designer, running a design studio and producing graphics and artwork for corporate clients, book covers and illustrations. Alison is also an accomplished author.

Visit bit.ly/FuturesColouring

About Elsewhen Press

Elsewhen Press is an independent publisher of Speculative Fiction. Based in the UK, in the South East of England, Elsewhen Press publishes titles in English in digital and print editions, adopting a digital-first policy for most titles. Elsewhen Press is an imprint of Alnpete Limited.

About LSe

Founded in Denmark in 2013, by Lars Stender, LSe (L. Stender e-books) publishing company specialises in science fiction and fantasy ebooks with stories that endeavour to redefine and revive both genres by widening the scope of stories and by targeting a wider audience. The human imagination is boundless, and L. Stender e-books intends to provide readers with a universe that reflects just that.