Posts Tagged The Road to Bedlam
The new covers continue to expand the series with the The Road to Bedlam on release very shortly exhibiting a distinctly nautical theme. If you look carefully you can see the edge of the old Bethlem Hospital where it stood on the edge of Moor Fields in the background. Exactly how the coastal theme and the infamous hospital come together can only be discovered by following Niall’s second adventure.
In some ways Bedlam is the darkest of the four books, with emerging themes of loss and grief layered over a missing persons mystery and a plot to finally resolve the conflict between the Seventh Court and the Gifted. It was intended to be a multi-threaded story that explored Niall’s new role as a Warder and his continuing conflict with Raffmir.
That conflict will reach a climax as the mystery of Bedlam is revealed and the dark plots of the Seventh Court reach fulfilment under the solstice sky.
Firstly, a big thank you to all the people who entered the competition to win signed copies of both Sixty-One Nails and The Road to Bedlam. It helped me celebrate the US launch of the second book in style.
I have to say that you made selecting a winner hard for me – there was a good crop of entries and I was amazed at the detail and imagination that you put in to them. What a creative bunch you are! Everything from using the ground for scrying, to boiling the water in your opponent’s lungs (ugh!) – well thought through and wonderfully inventive.
There can be only one winner, though, and she came up with a peach of an idea:
My elements are Water and Air, and the fey power is one of communication.It allows you to read the memory of water, which has to be interpreted as it is fluid, but you can do things like follow someone or know a bit of what they are feeling/thinking. There is water everywhere, even in a desert.
It can also be employed to influence people, sending emotions and suggestions into their minds, through air and water combined and if you’re very powerful, you can load an idea into a glass of water before they drink it. More often it is a power to use from a distance. It works better though rain. Running water, like underwater streams, can intensify it. This is a very emotional power; unstable but also untraceable.
The winner is Anabel Portillo, from Dublin: I really liked that way she thought through the implications of her suggestion – the clincher was the idea that you could imbue a liquid with a memory, passing on ideas or thoughts, all through a glass of water. It’s a superb idea and makes Anabel our winner – congratulations to her, the signed copies will be on their way this week.
Thanks again to everyone who entered, I hope you had as much fun with the competition as I did and congratulations once again to Anabel, our winner.
Today is the release day for The Road to Bedlam in the United States and Canada and we’re celebrating here at Shevdon Manor by giving away copies of both books: Sixty-One Nails and The Road to Bedlam as a pair, in the US edition, signed and dated 26th October 2010, to be posted anywhere in the world, free of charge.
In order to win, you will need to put your thinking caps on. In the books, fey power is an expression of five elements. These are Fire, Earth, Air and Water and the Void, as in the early classical elements of Buddhist, Hindu and Greek philosophy. These are not literal elements, but a way of understanding how fey power manifests, which is through combinations of these elemental aspects. The void does not combine with other elements but underpins all, so it stands alone.
There are situations where fey power is used in Sixty-One Nails, but in case you haven’t read it yet (why not?) an example would be; Blackbird is a creature of Fire and Air and she can create a swarm of hornets by breathing into her cupped hands, releasing stinging mayhem upon an attacker. The troll, Gramawl, is a creature of Earth and Water, and can move silently, no matter what surface he walks upon.
In order to win the books, you must imagine that you are able to combine two elements from Fire, Air, Earth and Water to express a magical fey power. Email me to explain what the power is, how it works and, importantly, what limits it has. Note that the Void is excluded from the competition as it stands alone, and for reasons that may become clear in future books.
The most imaginative and interesting entry will win the signed copies and, potentially, may be included in book three as one of the powers of an escapee – the relevance of that word will become clear as you reach the end of The Road to Bedlam.
Send your entries by email to mike (at) shevdon (dot) com with a subject of BEDLAM COMPETITION ENTRY, including your name and contact details so that I can get in touch if you win. You need to explain in the email which pair of elements create the ability, and what this achieves for the fey concerned. Remember that this could end up in a book, so dream up something urban, magical and edgy – but not so powerful that it unbalances the rest of the story, otherwise I won’t be able to use it.
I may award secondary prizes for close runners-up and even post the best ones on the blog for all to see. As usual in these matters, family members and those involved with producing or publishing the books are excluded from the competition. The rules are as I make them, and I reserve the right to change them if I need to.
The best entries will win points, and you know what points mean….
The launch of a new book is always a tense time for a writer. WIll new readers like it? Will fans of earlier books be delighted or disappointed? We writers aim to please, but as always, the proof of the pudding is in the eating.
So, what’s being said? Well, here’s a small extract from a review in the Falcata Times, which will be published when the book is released….
What makes this series so engrossing is the fact that its just so different from the numerous Urban Fantasy titles out there as whilst most are concentrating on exotic locations (well exotic to the UK) Mike writes it based here in Britain, whilst most write about Vamps and Werekin, Mike writes about the Fey and magic in the modern world. It is the Neverwhere for Generation X and as such when backed up with great dialogue, an emotional roller coaster alongside kick ass plot outline, you know that you have something special.
And here are some comments from SciFi and Fantasy Books…
The Road to Bedlam is a rich, detailed and impressive sequel to one of the best novels of 2009 with a gripping plot, superb characterisation and is such an effortless joy to read. If you have read Sixty One Nails you just have to get this, and for those of you who haven’t read Sixty One Nails, what are you waiting for, buy them both!
I am delighted to be able to give you an advance preview for the cover of THE ROAD TO BEDLAM which is scheduled for release on 2nd September.
There is always a challenge with covers that you want it to identify strongly with its sister titles but also to have a unique feel of its own, and in this case the team at Angry Robot have done a fantastic job. The central image stands out beautifully against the trademark map just visible in the background, while the design picks up the watery theme from the book.
I love the cover of Sixty-One Nails and I think that The Road to Bedlam can now stand alongside it on the bookshelf with pride.
The Road to Bedlam will be released on 2nd September 2010 in the UK and international, and on November 8th in Canada and the United States – in time for the Thanksgiving holiday.