Academic bureaucracy is stifling research but it’s not too late to put down your tea and rage against the system.

Vegan author, vegan main character, vegan publisher. Surprisingly King Street Run is not a vegan manifesto.

DARTFORD, KENT – 10 May 2024 – Elsewhen Press, an indie publisher specialising in speculative fiction, publishes novels from a wide variety of authors and with a huge range of themes and characters. But with the publication of King Street Run by V.R. Ling, it is the first time that Elsewhen Press, which is run by vegans, has published a book penned by a vegan author, with a vegan main character. That said, the book is not a manifesto for veganism. It does have a serious underlying premise, but it is essentially an adventure story, while also being a satire on society and academia in particular, poking fun at bureaucracy and stuffiness, thereby addressing important themes such as social mobility, imposter syndrome and entitlement. The book is also filled with playful references to popular culture as well as celebrated Cambridge alumni such as Douglas Adams and M.R. James.

The main character, Thomas, is an archaeology student at King’s College, Cambridge, who stumbles on a trio of anachronistic characters whom he initially believes to be steampunk enthusiasts but soon discovers to be the personifications of three of the Cambridge Colleges. Something is attacking them, and by extension the very essence of the Colleges. They need Thomas’ help to identify and stop their attacker. As the story progresses, Thomas meets the personification of all of the Colleges, before he must ultimately perform an unlikely heist to solve the problem.

The author, herself a Cambridge graduate, has taken great delight in including many Cambridge-related puns and disguised references, positively encouraging readers’ groups to be on the look-out for a variety of ‘Easter eggs’ within the text.

V.R. Ling said: “Not everything is what it seems. There are nooks and crannies in the text that seem plain enough, but look again and you might see something else. It might not be the sort of thing most writers hope for, but I’d love for readers to pause now and again, frown, and think ‘hang on a minute’ before re-reading a paragraph or reaching for their phone to check a detail. I have a love for old buildings and all their ‘twirly bits’ – turrets, little doors that lead up narrow staircases, embellished door frames, hidden cupboards and the like. These impish inclusions are my silly way of reflecting that love in writing; details you might not notice at first – and in the grand scheme of things it doesn’t matter if you don’t – but when/if you do, they provide another layer to the story.”

Peter Buck, Editorial Director at Elsewhen Press, said: “When Victoria submitted King Street Run to us, we were immediately enthralled by the setting, the characters and the adventure. Despite the serious underlying message, the deft combination of satire with archaeology and fantasy is very appealing. The main character being vegan was an obvious personal bonus. We later discovered that Victoria is also vegan so, during the editing process, we have not only been swapping comments on the text itself but also recipes and shopping tips!”

Is an adventure set among the Colleges of Cambridge likely to appeal to readers other than Cambridge alumni? Peter Buck, again: “The beauty of King Street Run is that it can be read purely as a fantasy novel about meta-beings, created by the history of a place and the people who are an institution’s collective memories. Or it can be read as an adventure, a race against time to stop the forces of evil defeating the forces of good. Or it can be read as a satire, lampooning staid elements in a society that needs to progress. Of course, it is all those things, so it will certainly appeal to Cambridge alumni; but it has a much wider appeal to lovers of fantasy, adventure, satire, and those concerned about the future of respected institutions – academic bureaucracy is familiar to people worldwide, not just graduates from institutions with buildings that are centuries old.”

King Street Run is now out in eBook and will be available in paperback on 20th May through all good booksellers.

Notes for Editors

About King Street Run

To Thomas, archaeology was time travel…
little did he know how literal that would turn out to be.

King Street Run by V.R. Ling; Cover by Alison Buck
Cover: Alison Buck

Thomas Wharton, an archaeology graduate, becomes drawn into the problems of a series of anachronistic characters who exist in the fractions of a second behind our own time. These characters turn out to be personifications of the Cambridge Colleges; they have the amalgamated foibles, history, and temperament of their Fellows and students and, together with Thomas, must enter into a race against time to prevent their world being destroyed by an unknown assailant.

King Street Run is a satirical fantasy thriller set among the iconic buildings of contemporary Cambridge.

.

Cover art: Alison Buck

About V.R. Ling

V.R. Ling
V.R. Ling

V.R. Ling (Victoria) has a life-long love for science fiction and fantasy, and by coincidence science and fiction have separately shaped her life; the science part came in the form of a degree in archaeology, a Masters in biological anthropology, and then a PhD in biological anthropology from King’s College, Cambridge. On the fiction front she is influenced by the likes of H.G Wells, Jules Verne, M.R James, Douglas Adams, Charles Dickens, Wilkie Collins, and many others. She also has a life-long fascination with the 19th century (literature, scientific advances, architecture); Victoria by name, Victorian by nature. She is an animal lover, vegan, likes sixties music, adores classic Doctor Who, and has an antique book collection that smells as good as it looks.

King Street Run by V.R. Ling is out today

King Street Run by V.R. Ling is available from today as an eBook from all good retailers.

King Street Run by V.R. Ling; Cover by Alison Buck
Cover: Alison Buck

King Street Run is a satirical fantasy thriller set among the iconic buildings of contemporary Cambridge.

To Thomas, archaeology was time travel…
little did he know how literal that would turn out to be.

Thomas Wharton, an archaeology graduate, becomes drawn into the problems of a series of anachronistic characters who exist in the fractions of a second behind our own time. These characters turn out to be personifications of the Cambridge Colleges; they have the amalgamated foibles, history, and temperament of their Fellows and students and, together with Thomas, must enter into a race against time to prevent their world being destroyed by an unknown assailant.

Available from today as an eBook on the usual platforms; paperback edition available from May 20 2024.

Long-awaited novel from best-selling Scottish author, continues series that explores changes to society had the science behind magic been understood in the 19th century

After a six-year wait, the latest, much-anticipated, novel in Christopher G. Nuttall’s Royal Sorceress series depicts a society that continues to be ardently patriarchal despite the most powerful magician being female

DARTFORD, KENT – 27 January 2023 – Elsewhen Press, an independent UK publisher specialising in Speculative Fiction, is committed to publishing entertaining books. Their most popular author is Christopher G. Nuttall, frequently one of the best-selling science fiction and fantasy authors on Amazon. As well as being a prolific self-published author, Nuttall has been published by indie publishers. His first professionally published book, The Royal Sorceress, was published by Elsewhen Press in 2012 and was an instant hit. Since then, there have been three more books in the series, the last one published in 2016. The Revolutionary War, the long-awaited next instalment in the story of Lady Gwendolyn Crichton, the eponymous Royal Sorceress, is now finally available.

Christopher G. Nuttall is a master storyteller, with an insatiable interest in history and in studied exploration of what might have been if events had been even just slightly different. That led him to set up one of the first alternative history websites in the early days of the world wide web. He soon had a large following among the community of history and alternative history fans, so when he started writing his own fiction it found immediate success. He has subsequently been writing stories in a number of different series, both science fiction and fantasy, but often with an eye on alternative history and social justice.

Peter Buck, Editorial Director of Elsewhen Press, says, “The Royal Sorceress series continues to be very popular, in ebook, print and audiobook – even now, 10 years after the first book was published. The stories are set in the early 19th century where English researchers had, some years before, discovered the scientific basis of ‘magic’ – enabling Britain to win the American war of independence, and the British Empire to flourish while other nations struggled to develop their own magical talents. As well as allowing Chris to explore the implications of such changes in global events, politically, the premise of the series addresses the disconnect between a society that has advanced both technologically and magically, but is still stuck with old social mores and attitudes. This is made evident in the attitude of politicians and military who are aghast that the most powerful magician in the country is a woman. His peerless skill at combining alternative history, social satire, and fantasy means that the stories appeal not only to fans of historical adventures and alternative history, but also to fans of fantasy and steampunk fiction. Since the success of The Royal Sorceress, Chris has been writing a variety of stories, but there have always been many readers regularly asking for the next instalment in Gwen’s story. At last, this much anticipated tale has arrived, with Gwen going to France for the first time.”

The Revolutionary War, is published by Elsewhen Press in eBook format today and will be available in paperback on the 27th February.

Notes for Editors

About Christopher G. Nuttall

Christopher G. Nuttall has been planning sci-fi books since he learnt to read. Born and raised in Edinburgh, Chris created an alternate history website and eventually graduated to writing full-sized novels. Studying history independently allowed him to develop worlds that hung together and provided a base for storytelling. After graduating from university, Chris started writing full-time. As an indie author he has self-published many novels. This is his latest fantasy to be published by Elsewhen Press, the much-anticipated fifth in the popular Royal Sorceress series. The first was The Royal Sorceress, followed by The Great Game, Necropolis and Sons of Liberty. The Revolutionary War continues Gwen’s story. Chris is currently living in Edinburgh with his wife, muse, and critic, Aisha, and their two sons.

About The Revolutionary War

The Revolutionary War by Christopher G. Nuttall; Cover design by Alison Buck
Cover design by Alison Buck

Something is rotten in the state of France …

After years of inconclusive war, the Franco-Spanish Empire is on the verge of collapse. The military is coming apart, the people are starving, the economy is on the brink … and yet, as long as the crown keeps tight control of its magicians, all hope of revolution and victory remains faint. The secret police are in control, rebel magicians are hunted down and eliminated before they can pose a threat and, worst of all, the government has found a new way to enhance magical power. The situation seems dire. But with a little help, there may be a chance.

Returning from America with Bruce, her fiancé, Gwen is not best pleased to be sent to Paris to train the rebels in magic, to give them a fighting chance against the government before the stresses of war threaten to destroy the British Empire as surely as their French enemies. But with shadowy figures lurking in the background, and an entire country on the brink of chaos, Gwen must face her gravest challenge yet …

… In an environment where her enemies hold all the cards.

 

Book V of the Royal Sorceress series

Cover artwork by Alison Buck

ISBN: 9781915304339 eBook / 9781915304230 paperback 422pp

Visit bit.ly/The-Revolutionary-War

About The Royal Sorceress series

It’s 1830, in an alternate Britain where the ‘scientific’ principles of magic were discovered sixty years previously, allowing the British to win the American War of Independence. Although Britain is now supreme among the Great Powers, the gulf between rich and poor in the Empire has widened and unrest is growing every day. The King’s Royal Sorcerer, is ageing and must find a successor to lead the Royal Sorcerers Corps, one who is Master of all known magical powers. There is only one candidate, one person who has displayed such a talent from an early age, but has been neither trained nor officially acknowledged. A perfect candidate to be Master Thomas’ apprentice in all ways but one: the Royal College of Sorcerers has never admitted a girl before. So start the adventures of Lady Gwendolyn Crichton, soon to be the Royal Sorceress.

Imagine if smartphones were banned.

Author Simon Lowe’s new novel ‘The World is at War, again’ takes a witty look at a world where new technology is a war-time vulnerability and society must regress to the safety of old tech.

DARTFORD, KENT – 07 June 2021 – Elsewhen Press is a publishing house that is becoming known for high quality, insightful yet entertaining speculative fiction. Their latest title, The World is at War, again by author Simon Lowe, although set in a near-future world, has a very retro feel about it. The global domination of new technology, from mega-corporations with no particular allegiance to national borders or political ideology, had led not to equality or a level playing-field but to an inability for nation-states to compete. Technology itself had become the fifth column, undermining governments and the military. The only solution was the Great Regression, rolling back insidiously pervasive technology and reverting to a world of paper, typewriters and land-line telephones. Against this background, Agent Assassins are deployed on covert missions because “Things Aren’t Going Too Well With The War” – including one agent who is tracking down another who has gone rogue, her cousin.

Cover design: Alison Buck

Lowe’s novel is neither dystopian nor post-apocalyptic fiction – the protagonists are attempting to pre-empt potential apocalypse. Nor, indeed, is it entirely fictional. Already, this year, cyber-security experts have been warning of the potential dangers of ‘smart cities’; ransom-ware attacks are on the increase, not just against businesses but also healthcare, government and infrastructure – the attack on software controlling an oil pipeline in the US caused widespread panic and public mayhem, including the terrifyingly stupid spectacle of people stockpiling petrol in plastic bags! The UK government’s own Centre for the Protection of National Infrastructure, CPNI, is warning industry and academia about the risks from ‘hostile state actors’. Meanwhile, during the pandemic, big tech companies (and their billionaire owners) have massively increased in value as their products and services have become ever more embedded and crucial to the lives of so many people. Where businesses used to be dependent on the goodwill of governments, the situation is now reversed, with the budgets of some smaller nations dwarfed by those of big tech, while much governmental infrastructure around the world is now under the control of a handful of corporations. How long would hostilities last if an enemy state could switch off the mobile phone network, the power grid, and the Internet within seconds of war being declared?

Peter Buck, Editorial Director of Elsewhen Press, says, “Science fiction has a long tradition of shining a spotlight on society’s problems, by recasting them in an alternative context (whether that’s an alien world, or a different time). The ever-increasing dependence on technology, and the impact that it has on our everyday security, not to mention long-term stability and defence, is an important issue that people are starting to consider. In The World is at War, again Simon Lowe has highlighted these serious concerns in a witty and entertaining way – after all, who hasn’t dreamt of becoming a trained Assassin and taking out a troublesome cousin. I know I have.”

The World is at War, again is already available in eBook format and is now available in paperback from today.

Notes for Editors

About The World is at War, again

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. It is both a novel and a rumination on how very bad and very good the world would be without technology.

ISBN: 9781911409830 (paperback, 296pp) / 9781911409939 (eBook)

About Simon Lowe

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.

 

“provocative, conspiracy-laden, entertaining, and delightfully crafted” – Review of Million Eyes: Extra Time on All Things Jill-Elizabeth

Cover: PR Pope

On her blog, Jill-Elizabeth has written a review of Million Eyes: Extra Time by C.R. Berry. The book is a freely downloadable collection of twelve time-twisting short stories that manage to demonstrate how almost every conspiracy theory you’ve ever heard of has been perpetrated by a specific group of time travellers. Of course, this is an introduction to the world of Million Eyes, to whet readers’ appetites in advance of the publication of the first in the Million Eyes series in January. Jill-Elizabeth writes that it is the most excellent world-introduction she’s seen in a long time.

Read her review on All Things Jill-Elizabeth here.

 

“All of the conspiracy theories are true!” – Review of Million Eyes: Extra Time on SFCrowsnest

Cover: PR Pope

On the SFCrowsnest website, Eamonn Murphy has written a review of Million Eyes: Extra Time by C.R. Berry, the prequel to the Million Eyes trilogy which launches in January 2020.

Featuring a dozen time-twisting short stories set in the Million Eyes universe, which Eamonn describes as “very like our own universe but with time travel and conspiracy theories added for fun”. And then he adds “All of the conspiracy theories are true! It was the time travellers what did it.

Some of the stories have been previously published elsewhere. Having read, and praised, one of the stories when it first appeared, encouraged Eamonn to review this book. He avoids giving away any of the plots but says “if you can think of a conspiracy theory, chances are that C.R. Berry has it here”, adding that he “covers all the bases of urban legend”. He compliments Berry’s “very readable style” and the clever plots, and says it is an enjoyable read. He concludes by noting that the book is available for free download from the Elsewhen Press website, adding “Obviously, that’s a cunning ploy to get you to buy ‘Million Eyes’ the novel when it comes out but I think the ploy might work.”

You can read Eamonn’s full review on SFCrowsnest here.

 

“I adore how this book was written” – Review of Million Eyes : Extra Time on Storgy

Cover: PR Pope

On the Storgy Magazine website, Sandra Hould has posted a review of Million Eyes: Extra Time by C.R. Berry, which is available for free download here, as a pre-cursor to the Million Eyes trilogy (the first book of which will be published by Elsewhen Press in January).

Opening with “Wow, what a ride!”, Sandra clearly enjoyed the book – “It was for me like a drug” she writes – and was very taken with the whole alternative world where many of the best known urban legends and conspiracy theories are all linked to time travellers changing time to suit their own puporse. Of course we won’t know what that purpose is until Million Eyes is published – “I know I will certainly want to dive more into that world” says Sandra – but in the meantime these free short stories certainly set the scene. Describing it as “all very interesting and compelling at the same time” Sandra says she wasn’t able to put the book down and when she finally did she remembered “the conspiracies I had heard over the years and how they were so well knitted into the narrative of this book”. She said that while reading it “we forget that it is fantasy and it becomes so real”.

Her final verdict: “A true gem to read for all lovers of conspiracies that I highly recommend to all.”

You can read Sandra’s full review on the Storgy website here.

 

“a terrifying and unexpected journey fraught with creatures from a nightmare” – Review of Resurrection Men on The Book Dragon

Cover design and artwork by Alison Buck

On her blog The Book Dragon, book reviewer Nikki has reviewed Resurrection Men by David Craig. With 4.5 stars out of 5 (because “it is good”) she has given a very definite thumbs-up to David’s book. She writes, “In this seemingly normal story about a couple of body snatchers from Glasgow, Scotland in the late 19th century, David Craig takes us on a terrifying and unexpected journey fraught with creatures from a nightmare”.

Nikki begins the review with her impressions after just having read the first chapter. She was intrigued and wanted to know what happens next. So that was a good start!

After reading the rest of the book she wrote her full review. She admits, “This is my first real historical fantasy novels that I have actually finished. I tend to become bored with historical fantasy–especially urban–preferring instead the medieval sword-fighting kind.” But she tells us that, after chapter 3 or so, she got so engrossed in the book that she read about 40% in one sitting and only stopped when she “happened to glance at the clock!” We all know that feeling, and any author is truly gratified that their writing can have that effect on their readers. Nikki adds, “It doesn’t matter whether you’re a historical fantasy reader or a fan of vampires, even if you’re not, it’s still a great book!” She loved the elements of sarcasm in the dialogue, especially between the two eponymous Resurrection Men, it was, she wrote, “the perfect balance between mystery/suspense/horror and comedy. Rather than making the story swing to the absurd, the comedy instead strengthened the other elements and added just a bit of relief for the reader to catch their breath before diving in again.”

Nikki’s description of the ending needs to be read (you can read her whole review here), so I won’t spoil it for you except to say that she finishes her review by writing that the ending was “the perfect way to wrap up the novel.”

Thanks for a great review Nikki.

 

“fascinating time travel adventure” – review of Timekeepers on Risingshadow

Artwork by Alison Buck

On Risingshadow.net, Seregil of Rhiminee has just reviewed Timekeepers by Dave Weaver, which he describes as “an entertaining combination of old-fashioned time travel adventure, modern storytelling and suspense”. Seregil says he is a fan of well written time travel fiction, and is happy to say that Timekeepers is “one of the best offerings to date”, very much in the same vein as The Time Machine by H.G. Wells. Successfully blending young adult fiction elements with adult fiction that works well because “the story is gripping and suspenseful”.


Seregil complimented Dave Weaver’s characterisation, believable vision of a Roman Britain, use of alternate history, time travel technology, artificial intelligence, and his deft handling of challenging themes and issues. He sums up with “a highly enjoyable, suspenseful and well written tale”.

You can read Seregil’s full review on Risingshadow here.

 

“poignant and rewarding” – Risingshadow review of Cursed on the Prairies

Artwork: Alison Buck

On Risingshadow.net, Seregil of Rhiminee has reviewed Cursed on the Prairies, the final volume in the Sacred Land Stories from Tanya Reimer. Seregil starts by commenting that Cursed on the Prairies brings the trans-generational story to a satisfyingly “poignant and rewarding ending”. He says that he “was impressed by the harrowing grittiness of the story arc. It’s great that the author avoids easy resolutions and delivers scenes that are not forced, but achingly realistic despite their occasionally fantastical and speculative nature. The author has a masterful control of elements related to past happenings, secrets and destinies, because she writes about them in a gripping way without preaching. This means a lot in the long run, because it creates a sense of realism that acts as an important counterbalance to the speculative fiction elements.” He continues by complimenting the quality of Tanya’s characterisations, story-telling and ability to tackle difficult subjects, “harsh realism”, in a way that does not feel artificial.

You can read Seregil’s full review on Risingshadow here.