Manifold Press in the Rainbow Awards 2016

Yesterday was a mighty fine day for the Press. Not only did we announce three new titles – each of which we’re rather excited about for various reasons – but we also found out that two of our earlier titles have earned themselves Honourable Mentions in the Rainbow Awards 2016!

Before we get into the details, though, I’d just like to add that for the first time, the Press has entered our book covers in the Rainbow Awards’ Best Cover contest. We’re proud of our new designs, courtesy of Michelle Peart, and we wanted to say that loud and clear.

The Best Cover contest is decided by popular vote, so do drop by and have a look at all the beauties on display. The only rule is that you have to vote for at least three covers. Somehow we don’t think you’ll have any problems finding enough to vote for … Indeed, Miss Bates was relieved to hear that this time there would be no difficulty, and she will not be limited to only three at once.

That link again: elisarolle.com/rainbowawards/covers.php

So, on to the Honourable Mentions!

IN DEEPFirst mentioned (honourably) on Elisa’s blog was IN DEEP by the always reliable Adam Fitzroy. Not one but three of the judges were very impressed!

1) Plot was a bit slow to get moving, as the reader doesn’t learn the protagonist’s goal/agenda for far too many pages, imho. Once that comes out, the stakes are clear and this complex “isolated village” story lights up. The fierce setting is a major character in the story, literally a force of nature. The nuanced and believable main characters are well drawn in a writing style both dense and elegant, especially the protagonist. I thoroughly enjoyed this poignant, measured, thoughtful read. A very satisfying mystery.

2) This was a carefully constrained story, unfolding step by step as the protagonist searches for answers in the death of his step son. Fitzroy does a beautiful job creating a world isolated both geographically and emotionally, the characters are roughly hewn from the landscape and finely detailed and nuanced in character so that everything, every step the protagonist takes, seems compelling and inevitable, and the love affair realistic.

3) I loved the writing style and the realism of the book. It was slower moving, but highly entertaining.

ACROSS YOUR DREAMSAnd then Jay Lewis Taylor was (honourably) mentioned in dispatches for ACROSS YOUR DREAMS – this time by four judges!

1) What a beautiful book! It is full of vivid imagery, well-drawn and unique characters, and the story–oh, so heartbreaking but yet appropriate for the times. War is hell, and it took its toll on the young men caught up in it. I felt like I was there with Alan, Lew and Russ, experiencing what they did right alongside them. I reveled in their stolen moments together with their beloveds, and cried for their devastating losses. This story will definitely stick with me for a very long time. I loved it. All the points.

2) I awarded top marks to this book because I thoght the writing was exceptional. I was transported back in time to the Great War. The sense of time and place were outstanding. The language of the book perfectly fitted the setting and the lives and opinions of the characters all felt true to time and place. An exceptional read.

3) This is a convincing, well-researched historical novel about a very closeted network of gay men who don’t have access to a community of like-minded people. The homophobia of the surrounding society is extreme, and so is their anxiety about sexual contact with other men, including kissing. The drama of warfare and the great flu epidemic, which together destroyed millions of lives, all seem true to life, and they could hardly be exaggerated. As a historical novel, this book is a solid achievement.

4) Touching and tender love story. A very real sense of the time and place. Excellent story.

Needless to say, we are very proud of these responses for two very fine books. Thank you kindly to Elisa Rolle and her team of judges for the honourables!

A PRIDE OF POPPIES, among other things

WWI anthology cover FINAL 200pxAs many of you would know, because we haven’t stopped talking about it in quite some while, our Great War charity anthology A PRIDE OF POPPIES was short-listed for the Historical Novel Society (HNS) Indie Award 2016. We are unbearably proud about being one of nine titles on the short list!

We recently received the news, however, that we haven’t progressed further. From the nine on the short list, four finalists were chosen by the judges. We are assured that the decision ‘was VERY close!’ which is a mighty fine compliment indeed.

We wish the remaining finalists well in the lead-up to the announcement of the winner and runner-up in September. Whichever titles are announced, we know it will be a well-earned honour.

RAVAGES - 200pxMeanwhile, our giveaway for a paperback copy of RAVAGES is still running. The volume will be signed by author R.A. Padmos and shipped anywhere in the world. We’ll need to close the giveaway within the next couple of days, however, so please do enter! After reading the recent glowing review of her novel IN THE PRIVACY OF THEIR HOME, I am sure you’ll feel it worthwhile to chance your luck.

A PRIDE OF POPPIES is a Lambda Literary Award finalist!

WWI anthology cover FINAL 200pxWe were beyond delighted to discover today that our WWI charity anthology A PRIDE OF POPPIES is a finalist in the LGBT Anthology category of the 28th Annual Lambda Literary Awards.

Looking at the other seven finalists in this category, it is easy to see that we are in truly excellent company – and to have even made it this far as one amidst a grand total of 933 submissions is a great honour.

Congratulations to the Press and to all my fellow Poppies – including our indefatigable proofreader F.M. Parkinson – for all your hard work. This title was a real team effort, and I know you put your hearts into these stories. I am sure you are all feeling that this recognition is a terrific reward!

The winners will be announced on Monday 6 June in New York City.

More kudos for A PRIDE OF POPPIES!

The Manifold Press team certainly has plenty to celebrate on this, the first day of 2016!

It has just been announced that our charity anthology, A PRIDE OF POPPIES, Modern GLBTQI fiction of the Great War, has been short-listed for the Historical Novel Society (HNS) Indie Award 2016!

To progress so far in these awards is a terrific achievement for an anthology focusing on characters who have been seen historically as belonging on the fringes of society. It is beyond heartening to know that our stories are welcome to stand on their own merits in the ‘mainstream’ fold.

Congratulations to all the Poppies authors and editors! You’ve done us all proud.

Goodreads M/M Romance Member’s Choice Awards

We’re honoured to have been nominated in three categories this year!

A PRIDE OF POPPIES

THE PEACOCK’S EYE

40-N.png

DANCE OF STONE
and
BUTTERFLY HUNTER

Congratulations to all the authors involved – and particularly, this time, to our good friend Jay Lewis Taylor who wrote two of these books and contributed very strongly to the third – and thank you kindly to the person or persons who nominated us; we really appreciate your confidence!

Rainbow Awards 2015 – the final verdict

It’s been a pretty enthralling 24 hours, but the results are now public at last – and it’s congratulations to Jay Lewis Taylor who achieved a Runner-Up (2nd) place in the Gay Historical Fiction category with

THE PEACOCK’S EYE

and to Chris Quinton who achieved a Runner-Up (3rd) in the Gay Historical Romance category with

UNDERCOVER BLUES

We’re seriously proud of both of you, and of our other authors who received Honourable Mentions and were also finalists: it was a really impressive success all round, and we couldn’t be happier for you all!

And once more, from the Rainbow Awards …

It’s difficult to know what to say about this – in fact it’s almost impossible to take it in – but yet again we have exciting news from this year’s Rainbow Awards, with this time an Honourable Mention for A PRIDE OF POPPIES, our WW1 anthology!

One of the judges called it:

An excellent anthology of World War 1 stories all told with a remarkable eye for authenticity and a great deal of love and compassion.

This means that seven out of the eight books we entered have now been distinguished in this way, a success rate which has quite frankly blown the very few brain cells we had left! We’re beyond thrilled with this, as you can probably imagine, and we suspect we’re going to be absolutely unbearable on the subject for a while! [We’d do the happy dance, but you really don’t want to see that!]

Our congratulations and thanks go to everyone involved in making A PRIDE OF POPPIES the success it has been – to the authors and the editing team in the first instance, and also of course to the readers. We can all quite justifiably share in the enjoyment of this:

RAINBOW AWARDS 2015
HONOURABLE MENTION

Still *more* from the Rainbow Awards …

The current Rainbow Awards truly have been the gift that goes on giving! We learned today that Julie Bozza has been distinguished for a second time this year, this time for THE THOUSAND SMILES OF NICHOLAS GORING – the third book in the ever-popular BUTTERFLY HUNTER sequence. Once again the judge’s comments were brief, so we’ll quote them in full:

A really engaging story that was easy to follow despite being the 3rd book in a series I had not read.”

Congratulations again, Julie!

RAINBOW AWARDS 2015
HONOURABLE MENTION

We genuinely can’t wrap our brains round this; out of eight books published in the qualifying period we have received no less than six Honourable Mentions! Does it get any better than this?????

More news from the Rainbow Awards!

This year’s Rainbow Awards have turned out to be an absolute delight for all of us at MANIFOLD PRESS; in addition to the four Honourable mentions so far, we can now also bring you news of one for Julie Bozza‘s recent title MITCH REBECKI GETS A LIFE!

In this case the judge’s remarks were only brief, so here they are in full:

Enjoyable story with interesting characters. Loved the different perspective on Australia and Australians, and the ending was realistic, rather than cliché.

Since these last four words in particular are very important to us, we’re especially pleased to be able to report them!

RAINBOW AWARDS 2015
HONOURABLE MENTION

Congratulations, Julie; thoroughly deserved!

The Rainbow Awards strike again!

Still boggling from yesterday’s astonishing twofer in the Rainbow Awards, we went online this morning and found out that lightning had struck once more! This time, we can congratulate Jay Lewis Taylor on impressing the judges with THE PEACOCK’S EYE:

“One of the best historical novels I’ve read in a while. The author captured late Elizabethan London perfectly. I could almost smell the ambience. Research has been flawless as far as I could tell.”

So, once more, we have the opportunity of proclaiming that another of our books has received the coveted:

RAINBOW AWARDS 2015
HONOURABLE MENTION

We’d tell you how proud we are of everybody, but we have an idea you can probably guess!