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Guest posts Historical Fiction

Spotlight on Nancy Jardine and the latest in the Celtic Fervour series

I’m delighted to welcome fellow Ocelot Press author, Nancy Jardine, to the blog today. She published a new book this week in her gripping and thoroughly researched Celtic Fervour series, set in Roman Britain. I’ll let Nancy tell you about it.

Thank you for inviting me today, Vanessa, to share a little about Beathan The Brigante, the 5th book in my highly acclaimed Celtic Fervour Saga Series. The novel launched two days ago with Ocelot Press and I’m still not down from the ceiling! It’s available in e-book and paperback from Amazon, and in paperback format via Ingram Spark (bookstores and libraries).

An offer from Nancy

Something your readers might find of interest is that the ebook versions of Books 1-4  in the Celtic Fervour Saga Series are reduced to only 99p/99c/0.99euros each, for some days around Book 5’s launch day and, depending on when your readers see this post, the offer may still be available. You can find the ebooks via my Amazon author page.

Writing the Celtic Fervour saga

I’ve loved writing all five books of the series, though honesty makes me confess that sometimes it’s been difficult at times knowing what to keep and what to remove from my final copies. I love to research and, like most historical authors I know, always want desperately to keep every little detail in the final copy. That is, naturally, entirely unrealistic but authors live to dream! I hope in Beathan The Brigante that the balance is just right for making the settings credible.

Although I’ve endeavoured to create each book as a ‘stand-alone’ read, the links between all of the books – and the development of the Garrigill Clan as the saga unfolds – make that difficult. Recurring themes also permeate the books, some being more relevant to my Roman Iron Age ‘Celts’ and others to the Ancient Roman characters.   

Beathan The Brigante

Beathan The Brigante brings one particular theme of the series to a full circle. The birth of a baby is prophesied in The Beltane Choice (Book 1), a son who is destined to become a famous tribal leader. Nara and Lorcan of the Garrigill Brigantes name their child Beathan – which means ‘life’.

Beathan’s upbringing is tinged with the constant threat of domination by the legions of Ancient Rome. When Beathan is seven, his Brigante clan from Garrigill Hillfort become refugees and trek northwards to Nara’s birthplace (Book 3). However, living there is very temporary since  the Roman invasion continues northwards, led by the new Governor of Britannia, General Agricola. At the age of almost thirteen, Beathan goes to battle at Beinn na Ciche against the Ancient Roman legions of General Agricola. That battle is lost by the Caledonians and we subsequently find Beathan is captured by Roman auxiliaries (Book 4).

Book 5 is Beathan’s story and tells the tale of what happens to him from his imprisonment at the age of almost thirteen to revenge against his Roman captors when he is a very mature seventeen-year-old. However, Book 5 is also partly the story of Beathan’s unique relationship with the Ancient Roman general, Gnaeus Iulius Agricola. Dragged in chains to Rome doesn’t mean that Beathan has lost all sense of honour. Equally, Agricola has enemies of his own and finds impartiality an impossible burden. And it isn’t only the main characters in Book 5 who make surprising choices!

Beathan endures so much during his early teenage years. He deserves some happiness but finds that Torrin is a determined young Brigante lass with her own plans mapped out. Love rarely comes easily for my Garrigill warriors and readers will find that young Beathan is no different!

There are repeated themes throughout the five books – threads which are sometimes fragile but also have a tensile strength that’s needed to face up to the Roman invaders. What keeps Beathan going during his years of captivity is the desire to be back in the bosom of his Garrigill family, but there is also an all-encompassing hunger to wreak havoc and disaster on his Roman tormentors.

Beathan is my current hero – might be for some time to come – and I do hope readers like him, too!

About the book

AD 85 Roman Empire

How can young Beathan of Garrigill – held hostage by General Agricola and dragged in chains to Rome – escape and wreak vengeance on his enemies?

Torrin is a strong-minded Brigante warrior-woman who forges her own future. She willingly takes care of him in a time of need, but her own plans are paramount.

Agricola’s career is in tatters. Attempts on his life are plentiful, having lost favour with Emperor Domitian. His gods have abandoned him, though assistance comes from a surprising source.

Will Beathan gain his freedom to return to his kin in Caledonia? Will Torrin be by his side? And how will Agricola survive without the emperor’s benevolence?

Beathan the Brigante is the fifth in the bestselling Celtic Fervour series.

Beathan The Brigante ebook edition

Beathan the Brigante paperback edition

About Nancy

Nancy Jardine writes historical fiction, time travel historical adventure and contemporary mysteries. When not writing or researching (a compulsion she can’t give up), she’ll be with her grandchildren, gardening, or reading novels. She loves to interact with her readers when regularly signing/ selling paperback versions of her novels at local Craft Fairs, and at larger event venues. She enjoys presenting author talks and gives formal presentations on her novels, and on Ancient Roman Scotland, to groups large and small.

She’s a member of the Historical Novel Society, the Scottish Association of Writers, the Federation of Writers Scotland, the Romantic Novelists Association and the Alliance of Independent Authors. She’s self-published with Ocelot Press.

Find Nancy at these places:

Copyright © Nancy Jardine, Vanessa Couchman 2020, all rights reserved.

Categories
Events Historical Fiction Ocelot Press

Meet the Ocelots this Week!

As a prelude to our character interview blog hop, starting next week, 5 of the Ocelot Press authors – including me! – are each taking over the Ocelot blog for a day. We’ll each talk about the background to the book in which the character features. Details in this post.

Ocelot Press

We can’t believe it’s already 18 months since Ocelot Press went live. Over the next few weeks we’ll be celebrating with a series of blog posts and character interviews and there’ll be a chance to buy some of our e-books for discounted prices. So definitely watch this space.

For starters, this coming week, each of us will take over the Ocelot blog for a day to bring you information on the background, setting and salient facts of one of our books. You’ll get an insider’s view of the story behind the book – and each of them makes fascinating reading.


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Categories
Fiction Historical Fiction

Overture Cover Reveal

I’ve reached a very exciting stage in the genesis of my latest novel, Overture. I can now reveal the cover, and the Kindle version is on pre-order on Amazon.

As ever, my designer JD Smith has come up with a great cover design, which I believe really conveys the flavour of the Belle Epoque period in France.

Categories
Novels Publishing

Introducing Ocelot Press

Ocelot Logo

Ocelot Press has been going for a couple of months, but now we have a shiny new website, so I can announce it officially and you can find out more about our authors and our books. We already have a number of titles published under the imprint.

What is Ocelot Press? It’s a group of experienced published authors who have teamed up to help each other edit, produce and promote our books to the highest professional standards.

We are all either former or current Crooked Cat Books authors, who also self-publish. Under the Ocelot Press imprint, we retain our creative independence while benefiting from each other’s knowledge and experience. All of my books are now published under the Ocelot imprint.

Our authors write mostly historical fiction, including historical mystery, paranormal and romance. We aim to introduce our readers to a wide range of fiction through our joint marketing and publicity efforts.

It’s a great new venture and I’m excited to be a part of it.

Copyright © Vanessa Couchman 2018, all rights reserved.

Categories
Historical Fiction History People guest posts

History People: Kate Braithwaite, Writing Historical Crime

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I’m delighted to welcome today an author who is very much a writer after my own heart. Kate Braithwaite likes to write novels that take real historical events as their starting point and have an unsolved mystery at the centre. This has taken her from Louis XIV’s France to Charles II’s England – and then to 1880s New York. These are just the sort of books I love to read, so you’re in for a treat.

Categories
Historical Fiction History People guest posts

History People: Nancy Jardine and Real Historical Figures

Nancy J 5
Statue of the Roman Commander Agricola in Frejus.

A big welcome to Nancy Jardine, a great author and a specialist on Roman Britain. She raises a familiar dilemma for historical novelists: how do you get plausibly into the mind of someone who lived two thousand years ago? What sort of guesswork do you have to do? And what contemporary sources can you rely on – or not? Let’s hear it from Nancy.

Categories
Historical Fiction History People guest posts

History People:  Sue Barnard, Writing the Book You Want to Read

Romance with a twist

It’s always a pleasure to welcome my friend and fellow author Sue Barnard onto the blog. She tells us how the advice to “write the book you want to read” led her into historical fiction. I’ve had a sneak peek at Sue’s latest book, Heathcliff (more about it below), and so I know you’re in for a treat when it’s published.

Categories
Events Novels

Post-Christmas Sale of Kindle Books

CC sale

If you have a new Kindle or some Amazon gift vouchers or want to stock up your old Kindle to see you through those long winter evenings, now is your chance to buy some e-books at bargain prices. My publisher, Crooked Cat, has a sale of Kindle books on from today (27th December) until 29th December. Many titles are reduced to 99p/99¢ or equivalent across the Amazon stores.

Zaronza promo

This includes my novel The House at Zaronza, set on early 20th-century Corsica and at the Western Front during WWI. You can get a little taste of this stunning Mediterranean island – or a foretaste if you’re going on holiday there next year.

Saint-Florent, Corsica
Saint-Florent at the base of Cap Corse

Just go to your Amazon store and type Crooked Cat Books into the search box. You’ll find a range of genres, including thrillers, crime, chicklit, romance, historical, humour and paranormal.

The sale is on for only three days, so don’t delay.

You might also like:

Short Stories Inspired by France 
Views of Corsica
Why Corsica Should Be a Happy Hunting Ground for Authors

Copyright © Vanessa Couchman 2017, all rights reserved

Categories
Historical Fiction History People guest posts

History People: Alison Morton, a Self-Confessed Roman Nut

 

Alison Morton (alt)
Author Alison Morton

Have you ever asked yourself, “What if…?” What if Harold hadn’t lost at Hastings, what if Richard III hadn’t been killed on Bosworth Field, what if Hitler had been a better military strategist? Today, I’m thrilled to welcome an author who asked herself the “what if” question and came up with a terrific series of novels set in a 21st-century Roman society. Alison Morton is a leading light in the Historical Novel Society and packs more into a day than most of us do into a month. She tells us about her passion for ancient Rome and where it has led her. Take it away, Alison…

Categories
History People guest posts Novels Uncategorized

History People: Nicola Slade, History and Mysteries

 

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Nicola Slade

It’s a great pleasure to welcome Nicola Slade to the blog today, especially as she has also written a “The House At…” novel! The House at Ladywell was published a couple of days ago and combines historical and romantic fiction. Nicola is a prolific author whose previous books have mostly been historical mysteries. Let’s find out how she got into writing them.