QUEER COMPANY 3 – Early bird rate extended!

Following our recent Twelve Days of Christmas discount promotion, we have decided to retain the Early Bird registration rate of £50.00 until January 31. Full details are available here!

There are still places available at QUEER COMPANY 3, so if you would like to grab a place at the discounted rate now would be a very good moment to do so.

We look forward very much to seeing you all in Manchester at the end of April!

New titles for 1 February announced today!

We’re proud to announce three wonderful titles from Manifold Press stalwarts – available for pre-order now, and released on 1 February!


From Jay Lewis Taylor we have an anthology of short stories, APPOINTED LIMITS, following the unpredictable love-life of Naval surgeon John Amery throughout the dramatic early years of the twentieth century. An earthquake and the run-up to and aftermath of war profoundly affect not only his life but also those of his friends and acquaintances – and fans of Jay’s writing will notice some characters familiar from other books making ‘guest appearances’ along the way.

Pre-order links for APPOINTED LIMITS:


We’re also delighted to be hosting a new, slightly revised edition of Elin Gregory’s popular short novel A TASTE OF COPPER – a tale of mediaeval France, of jousting knights, of hopeless quests, and of Olivier’s selfless unrequited love for his stubborn and inflexible master. When all Olivier cares about is Maheris, and all Maheris cares about is his duty, it takes something quite out of the ordinary to bring them together at last.

Pre-order links for A TASTE OF COPPER:

Last but certainly not least is another revised, pre-loved story from Elin Gregory: SHEEP’S CLOTHING. Whether or not you’re into shifters, we’re sure you’ll love this tale of Darren Murchison, reluctant werewolf. He moves to Welsh sheep country in the hopes of simplifying his life – but of course such intentions are always doomed to go awry. Combining Elin’s emotional insight with her clever sense of humour and terrific storytelling, SHEEP’S CLOTHING will delight anyone who loves a good yarn.

Pre-order links for SHEEP’S CLOTHING:

ESPRESSO SHOTS is an informal imprint which features long stories and novellas. If you want to read more about this imprint, please check out our blog post. The cover image is the same for all titles, so we chose an image that evokes the comforts – and the stimulations – of the reading experience itself.


We are absolutely sure you’ll find plenty here for your reading pleasure!

QUEER COMPANY 3 – Christmas Special!

For the Twelve Days of Christmas only (i.e., from 26 December to 6 January), we are reverting to our Early Bird registration rate of £50.00. (Should we call this a Recent Robin rate? A Late Turkey rate?) Full details are available here!

We have also added to the event website some information about Manchester’s Gay Village, which will be right on our doorstep, and which may help to persuade some of you who have yet to make up your minds!

There are still plenty of places available at QUEER COMPANY 3, but after 6 January the registration rate will increase again – so if you would like to grab a place at the discounted rate now would be a very good moment to do so.

We look forward very much to seeing you all in Manchester at the end of April!

Wishing you all the joy of the season … with a bonus End of Year sale!

The Manifold Press team wishes you much merriness and joy, whether or however you celebrate during this season.

Smashwords is celebrating by hosting an End of Year Sale for eight days from 25 December to 1 January inclusive – and the Press is participating, with all of our backlist titles discounted by 25%. (The only exceptions are our charity anthologies, A Pride of Poppies and Call to Arms.)

This is a terrific opportunity to stock up that TBR pile, and maybe try out some stories by new-to-you authors.

Browse the Manifold Press catalogue on Smashwords – or browse the full catalogue of all the discounted ebooks across the site. We’re 100% sure you’ll find something to love!

  • Please note that the discounts will not apply to our three new titles announced on 1 January.

Santa Baby, slip a paperback (or two) under the tree…

Life having slightly got the better of us here at Manifold Press lately, we’ve unfortunately missed a couple of opportunities to bring new paperback editions of some of our titles to your attention. Today, however, with the launch of the paperback version of Morgan Cheshire’s A TIME TO KEEP, we have an opportunity to put that right. So, out with your time-turner (or, if you prefer, hop into your blue Police box) and let’s take a brief trip back to May 2016!

 

Adam Fitzroy’s THE BRIDGE ON THE RIVER WYE sneaked out in paperback a good eighteen months ago, and we completely forgot to mention it at the time! It’s the modest little tale of an organic farmer, the obligations he’s inherited from his dead brother, and the return of a long-lost friend who seems determined to share his burden. Join Rupert, Jake, and their assorted family and friends as they investigate a series of mysterious occurrences on an isolated Welsh land-holding, and juggle with the demands of an irascible TV chef!

 

F.M. Parkinson’s THE WALLED GARDEN is really too well-mannered a book to make a great fuss about itself, but for those who enjoy Dickens, Mrs Gaskell, the Brontes and other authors of the period who tell a story slowly and with masses of corroborative detail the new paperback version will be a welcome addition to their library. When William Ashton is employed as Edward Hillier’s gardener he is attracted to his master but – in an unforgiving social climate – love is slow to blossom, albeit lasting when it does.

 

Morgan Cheshire’s A TIME TO KEEP is another of her trademark gentle love stories, this time taking place in the years immediately surrounding the First World War. Two workhouse boys in love, Ben and Matthew, make their tentative way in the world, determined only to stay together. Ben secures employment on a farm, Matthew becomes an assistant lock-keeper on a busy canal. When war comes, however, their hopes are crushed, and Matthew must continue alone – until, that is, the providential arrival of a stranger gives him something new to hope for.

 

We love all three of these books, and we’re delighted to see them in paperback form; there’s loads of good reading here for the long winter evenings, and they’re just the thing to slip into someone’s Christmas stocking … or, indeed, your own!

Have you read SUBMERGE … ?

I was delighted to work as editor with Eleanor Musgrove on her novel SUBMERGE. We’d been friends for a while, and I was keen to see what she’d come up with in a novel-length story. Needless to say at this stage, I wasn’t disappointed!

I love this tale of a group of friends who have made a safe place for themselves – both literally in terms of the eponymous LGBTQ+ nightclub ‘Submerge’, and metaphorically in terms of their love and support for each other. They are a diverse bunch, with an importance placed on shared values and goodwill. I loved this, as for me this is how friendship should be. Yes, there needs to be some like-mindedness and shared concerns, shared understandings, but this need not be narrowly interpreted as based only on gender, sexuality, ethnicity and so on.

Within this very contemporary setting, one of the main characters is set on solving a mystery which just might bring the whole wonderful thing crashing down. This plot-line is carefully and intriguingly developed, intertwining with the more personal concerns of the characters.

If you’d like to join Jamie, Miles, Gina, Addie and their multifarious friends on their journey, SUBMERGE is currently on sale at Smashwords!


Blurb: Jamie Hill walks into his local LGBT+ nightclub, Submerge, intending to make friends and have a good time. When he meets comedian Addie Crewe and her girlfriend Gina Wilson, his night is already looking up – but it’s the man Gina introduces him to who really catches his eye. Miles Bradford seems to be everything Jamie could want in a man: smart, funny, kind. Jamie can’t take his eyes off him.

But though Submerge might sparkle on the surface, Jamie knows that the club, just like himself, hides darker secrets in its depths … and even Miles might not be as clean-cut as he appears.

Word count: 72,400 words

Smashwords sale: $6.95 $5.95


It’s the season for thinking about gifts – for yourself and for your loved ones! Is there ever any better present than a book … ?

Manifold Press is currently offering five of our recent novels at discount prices on Smashwords. Follow these links, and then click the Buy with coupon buttons for the books of your choice. (Whether you then click the Give as a gift button is entirely up to you.)

Happy reading!

Have you read ARDENT … ?

I had the honour of acting as editor for ARDENT, a fascinating historical novel set in the dangerous world of Medici Florence.

Heloise West is already well established as an author, but she was new to the Press when she offered us the opportunity to publish ARDENT. We felt it was a perfect fit with Manifold Press, as we are known for our quality historical fiction. ARDENT, with all its vivid detail, brings to life two artists as its main characters, and explores their world of creativity and commissions, intrigue and innocence, apprentices and patrons, lovers, friends – and the occasional murderer.

As someone who is fascinated and often seduced by colour, I appreciated that the plot centred on a controversial new method of creating a paint pigment – the ‘ardent red’ of the title. I also loved how aware the main characters were of the colours of their world, and how that also brought the village of Torrenta and the city of Florence into clear view for the reader. I keep wanting to use and re-use the word ‘vivid’ to describe the results!

Beyond the use of colour, I loved how intrinsic their art was to the main characters’ point of view. Their values and perspectives and imagery were all affected by their work and their vocation. Splendid stuff!

If you’d like to explore below the surface beauties of Florence with Morello and Benedetto, ARDENT is currently on sale at Smashwords!


Blurb: In the village of Torrenta, master painter Morello has created a color that mimics the most expensive pigment of all, the crimson red. Master Zeno, from strife-ridden Medici Florence, tells him the color gives him a competitive advantage – but Morello must be careful. Fraud is ever-present in the dye and pigment markets.

As they work together in Torrenta, Morello falls hard for Zeno’s assistant, Benedetto Tagliaferro, a young man of uncommon beauty and intelligence. Benedetto is still fixed on his old lover, the master painter Leo Guisculo, and cannot return Morello’s affections.

But when Leo dies in a terrible accident, it’s to Morello that Zeno and Benedetto turn for help. And Morello soon finds that in Florence, every surface hides layers of intrigue.

Word count: 75,600 words

Smashwords sale: $6.95 $5.95


It’s the season for thinking about gifts – for yourself and for your loved ones! Is there ever any better present than a book … ?

Manifold Press is currently offering five of our recent novels at discount prices on Smashwords. Follow these links, and then click the Buy with coupon buttons for the books of your choice. (Whether you then click the Give as a gift button is entirely up to you.)

Happy reading!

Have you read UNDER LEADEN SKIES … ?

Fiona Pickles loves a good historical novel, so she was delighted to work as editor with author Sandra Lindsey on this story. When I asked her which aspects of UNDER LEADEN SKIES she liked best, this was her response:

“In fiction, first-person narration is difficult to pull off successfully. People who aren’t writers often think it should be easy, but when you consider that it involves living inside the skin of a character for a sustained period – several months, at least – the scale of the challenge becomes apparent, and succeeding so well that the end result reads like an autobiography is rare indeed.

“When we first encountered UNDER LEADEN SKIES, this was what we noticed – the wholly convincing and consistent voice of Max-alias-Teddy, the lead character, who describes his wartime adventures, both heroic and romantic, as calmly and authoritatively as any real-life veteran. There’s also a genuine love and understanding of the technology; the aircraft Teddy encounters are characters in themselves – and some of them have pretty decisive roles to play in the story, too.

“Being set in wartime this is a realistic mixture of joy and sorrow, love and pain; for Teddy, as for millions of others at the time, life doesn’t turn out quite the way he was hoping – but he learns to hold onto the happiness he has, without ever losing sight of the pleasures of the past.”

If you’d like to accompany Teddy on his journey through the war and beyond, UNDER LEADEN SKIES is currently on sale at Smashwords!


Blurb: Love. Loss. Betrayal. Forgiveness. Honour. Duty. Family.

In 1939, the arrival of war prompted ‘Teddy’ Maximilian Garston to confess his love to his childhood friend, Huw Roberts. Separated by duty – Teddy piloting Sunderland flying boats for RAF Coastal Command, and Huw deep underground in a South Wales coal mine – their relationship is frustrated by secrecy, distance, and the stress of war that tears into every aspect of their lives.

After endless months of dull patrols, a chance encounter over the Bay of Biscay will forever change the course of Teddy’s life. On returning to Britain, how will he face the consequences of choices made when far from home? Can he find a way to provide for everyone he loves, and build a family from the ashes of wartime grief?

Word count: 46,000 words

Smashwords sale: $5.95 $4.95

Recognition: Honourable Mention in the Rainbow Awards 2016, and a Finalist in the Gay Historical fiction category


It’s the season for thinking about gifts – for yourself and for your loved ones! Is there ever any better present than a book … ?

Manifold Press is currently offering five of our recent novels at discount prices on Smashwords. Follow these links, and then click the Buy with coupon buttons for the books of your choice. (Whether you then click the Give as a gift button is entirely up to you.)

Happy reading!

Have you read HARBINGER ISLAND … ?

Fiona Pickles was keen to take up the editing reins for this tome by Dorian Dawes. I recently asked for her thoughts, and this was her response:

“It’s different! That was what took our attention when we read HARBINGER ISLAND for the first time. In fact it’s a wild – and, at times, terrifying – ride through a sort of Hieronymus Bosch landscape which is all the more disconcerting for being located in an otherwise blameless corner of the USA. Here the familiar intersects with the bizarre; in a series of short stories we’re introduced to a galaxy of disparate outsiders who gradually form a coherent group to defend their world against the creeping evil threatening to engulf it. What sets these characters apart is their diversity; lesbian, gay, trans, with or without strange magical powers, they transcend their often horrific backgrounds to become a ‘found family’ with a shared aim.

“This is a book which can be read on more than one level. Taken at face value it’s a series of stirring encounters between good and a horrific supernatural evil, but look a little more closely and it’s a picture of how frightening it can be to grow up ‘different’ – and how those who don’t conform to society’s expectations can gain strength from one another, banding together against something which seems to be larger, stronger, and more terrifying than any of them can deal with separately.”

If you’d like to bring your courage and wits to the challenges faced by Professor Bartleby Prouse, HARBINGER ISLAND is currently on sale at Smashwords!


Blurb: Every community has a dark side, a sordid past that’s kept to hushed whispers and out of the ears of prying tourists – and Harbinger Island has the darkest shades of them all. Professor Bartleby Prouse is obsessed with the secrets and occult conspiracies surrounding the island’s myriad of unsolved murders and mysteries. He’ll have to use every bit of magic and cunning at his disposal if he is to protect his students after they unwittingly draw the attention of one of the island’s most insidious cults.

A collection of character-driven stories which combine dark fantasy and horror elements within a modern setting. The diverse cast of LGBT+ individuals come from various backgrounds, and the stories examine the prejudices they experience in their day-to-day lives along with the supernatural horrors they face.

Word count: 84,500 words

Smashwords sale: $6.95 $5.95

Recognition: Honourable Mention in the Rainbow Awards 2017


It’s the season for thinking about gifts – for yourself and for your loved ones! Is there ever any better present than a book … ?

Manifold Press is currently offering five of our recent novels at discount prices on Smashwords. Follow these links, and then click the Buy with coupon buttons for the books of your choice. (Whether you then click the Give as a gift button is entirely up to you.)

Happy reading!

Have you read TO THE LEFT OF YOUR NORTH STAR … ?

I had the privilege of acting as editor for this debut novel by Michelle Peart.

TO THE LEFT OF YOUR NORTH STAR is the sort of science fiction that prompts you to think about who we are and who we want to be. Edward Kemp, who has reluctantly accompanied his father on an expedition to the planet Abaytor, is certainly forced to consider these questions during his journey down-river with an off-kilter alien named Burn. This ‘odd couple’ relationship is rife with misunderstandings at first, but slowly Edward starts to view his other-worldly companion as less infuriating and more insightful, and perhaps even someone he can befriend and learn from.

This story takes place in an unfamiliar setting on a copper-coloured river, with an ever-surprising assortment of Abaytorian life challenging our all-too-human Edward – but the ‘road trip’ and ‘coming of age’ aspects will help you feel right at home.

If you’d like to join Edward and Burn on their adventure, TO THE LEFT OF YOUR NORTH STAR is currently on sale at Smashwords!


Blurb: The self-assured Edward has accompanied his father, famous explorer Herb Kemp, to Abaytor. Herb is on a mission to save Earth’s bee population, but Edward couldn’t care less and just wants the comforts of home. Burn, an off-kilter Abaytorian with a desire for change, is charged with escorting Edward down the Copper River to Herb’s spaceship. As they travel through perilous lands on a makeshift raft, they are in a constant battle with the river, themselves and each other. Edward’s problems with his father are laid bare as they are hunted, starved, almost drowned, and confronted by difficult choices. But, among the striking landscapes and colourful people of Abaytor, Edward slowly learns about trust, self-acceptance and love.

Word count: 63,300 words

Smashwords sale: $5.95 $4.95

Recognition: Honourable Mention in the Rainbow Awards 2017


It’s the season for thinking about gifts – for yourself and for your loved ones! Is there ever any better present than a book … ?

Manifold Press is currently offering five of our recent novels at discount prices on Smashwords. Follow these links, and then click the Buy with coupon buttons for the books of your choice. (Whether you then click the Give as a gift button is entirely up to you.)

Happy reading!