Not two but THREE new titles announced today!

We are announcing three new titles today, one from R.A. Padmos – and two from authors new to Manifold Press! They are all available for pre-order now, and will be published on 1 August.

Under Leaden Skies by Sandra LindseyThis is the Press’s first novel from Sandra Lindsey, and we certainly hope it won’t be the last! UNDER LEADEN SKIES begins in the early days of the second world war. ‘Teddy’ Garston is finally prompted to confess his love for his friend Huw Roberts, and they spend a few hours together before Teddy must travel north to Shetland to take up his duties piloting Sunderland flying boats. The story follows Teddy throughout the war, while all the old certainties seem lost in the turbulence of change and loss – until at last he can head home again, and try to find a way of building a new life with those he loves.

Eleventh Hour by Elin GregoryElin Gregory has long been a good friend to the Press and all who sail in her – not to mention a well respected and much loved author of all things historical – so we are dead chuffed to be publishing her delightful novel ELEVENTH HOUR. Elin lovingly evokes old adventures of espionage and derring-do in this tale set in 1920s London. If you are nostalgic for ‘couples only’ boarding houses and nosy landladies, bath houses and suave gents spying for foreign powers, not to mention the necessity of tea and a good overarm bowling action, then this is the yarn for you!

Our third title to be published on 1 August is our first ESPRESSO SHOT – which is our new informal imprint, featuring long stories and novellas. If you want to read more about this imprint, please check out our blog post.

Like People by R.A. PadmosAs we have come to expect from R.A. Padmos, her LIKE PEOPLE is a superb historical novella which really tells it like it was. Karl Meisner has been fighting for five years in a war he never wanted, for a nation-state Karl knows very well wants him dead – for Karl Meisner is a man who loves men. We follow him through the last days of the war as he survives being shelled by the Russians, manages to walk in a state of exhaustion with other soldiers and refugees to the river Elbe, and surrenders to the Allies. From there he ends up in a prison camp in England – where he meets Nathaniel Cyfer, a man who must have no reason at all to ever like let alone love him.

As you can see, these titles feature the Press’s new cover design – and we think they are beautifully evocative, and worthy follow-ups to the covers for ACROSS YOUR DREAMS and CARAVAGGIO’S ANGEL.

The ESPRESSO SHOT cover will be the same for all titles published under that imprint. Given that it will grace stories of potentially all styles and all genres, we chose an image that evokes the comforts – and the stimulations – of the reading experience itself.

Review of IN THE PRIVACY OF THEIR HOME

IN THE PRIVACY OF THEIR HOMEWe’re delighted to find that Dennis of Love Bytes Same Sex Book Reviews enjoyed IN THE PRIVACY OF THEIR HOME by R.A. Padmos. This story considers the impact of the watershed change that occurred in the UK in 1967 – that’s in living memory for some of us! – when homosexuality was finally decriminalised.

It was interesting to read a story that talked about the past and showed how far we have come and the sacrifices that were made not so long ago.

We’re sure that other readers will also appreciate the novel for this perspective – and for many other reasons, too!

New review of IN THE PRIVACY OF THEIR HOME

IN THE PRIVACY OF THEIR HOMEIt never ceases to amaze us in what a wonderful variety of places reviews of our books sometimes turn up! This time, to our delight, it was the ‘Watch and Word Society’, a blog by “two queer, Boston-based readers of romance novels and erotica” – they definitely sound like people we’d want to keep in touch with!

Their reviewer Danielle’s response to IN THE PRIVACY OF THEIR HOME was somewhat brief but nonetheless enthusiastic for that!

This book reminded me of the movie A Solitary Man but it left me with a smile on my face. This was beautiful.

We’d certainly have to agree with that, and we’d like to thank the lovely people at the Watch and Word Society for their time and their comments.

Our giveaway winners!

We’ve had two giveaways running, and I’m delighted to now announce the results. We held the draws this morning using random.org.

Author R.A. Padmos offered a signed paperback copy of her book RAVAGES, to be posted anywhere in the world. And the lucky winner is…

  • Carolyn

The Press offered our newsletter subscribers the chance to win a place at our Queer Company 2 event in Oxford in November. We’ll cover the delegate registration fee as well as contribute towards travel costs. And the lucky winner is…

  • H.B.

Congratulations to both! And thank you very kindly indeed to everyone who entered the giveaways. Julie will be in touch with H.B. very soon, and R.A. Padmos will be in touch directly with Carolyn. Please do sign up to our newsletter if you want to take part next time round.

And meanwhile, we’re wishing you all a happy Friday!

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.

New review of IN THE PRIVACY OF THEIR HOME

IN THE PRIVACY OF THEIR HOMEWe were delighted to wake up to a very supportive review this morning, of IN THE PRIVACY OF THEIR HOME by R.A. Padmos. The review is from Mark at Sinfully Gay Romance Book Reviews, and I think it’s fair to say that he loved this tale!

I’m so happy I stumbled across this little gem of a book. … It doesn’t take very long to read but there is so much wonderful writing and emotion all crafted together in 123 pages it took my breath away and left me thinking about the story for days after. … Ms Padmos has a writing talent that struck every chord with me. A real wordsmith who crafts every subtle feeling, emotion and situation with an belletristic empathy that is a rare find.

We are certainly more than happy to agree that R.A. Padmos is a fine writer, with a particular gift in exploring not only her characters but also the times in which they live. Thank you, Mark! We’re delighted that this story, and how it’s told, resonated so deeply with you.

AUTHOR GUEST BLOG NUMBER TWENTY SIX – R.A. Padmos

Author R.A. Padmos talks about the first title she published with Manifold Press, back in August 2011. She is giving away a paperback copy to one lucky reader. See below for details!

Ravages, a few years later

RAVAGES - 200pxWriting RAVAGES started with a simple question. What would it take for a Premier League footballer, in the middle of his career, to come out as gay? This idea resulted in a novel about the consequences of the brutal violence of a few, the friendship of many and the love of one very stubborn man.

Ravages was published in 2011. I had hoped, perhaps even expected, that a hugely popular sport like football (soccer) would by now have at least one or two openly gay players active in any of the major European competitions. At the moment of writing this article, in March 2016, there are no such players. I guess the reason for that is a complex mixture of culture, imagined and real risks, lack of courage (hey, manly men in their twenties have as much right to be scared as anyone else), money and public image.

As a lesbian with a history of being out to pretty much everyone I ever met since the late Seventies, I’ve seen the price people pay for being in the closet. After all those years, and having met far more accepting straight people than homophobic ones, I have yet to meet the first heterosexual who truly understands the complexity of telling yourself it’s all private and half-believing it’s actually the honest truth, while at the same time feeling something in your reasoning doesn’t quite add up. Even if there are, obviously, situations in which you’d better keep your mouth shut if you prefer to leave home on your own terms instead of being kicked out by mum and dad.

To be honest, I don’t believe for a moment, that 100% closeted gay footballers active in the Premier League are the rule. Assuming that there are gay players at the highest level, and why wouldn’t I, my guess is that most have at least some friends, family, team-mates and others who are in the know. So, what keeps them so unanimously hidden from their fans?

It’s not my, or anyone else’s, business if or when any gay footballer of (inter)national standing fully comes out of the closet, let that be absolutely clear. To be honest, I would find the whole matter utterly uninteresting if I wasn’t so aware of the fact that being even partly in the closet in a society where homosexuality is neither a crime nor a shame, is perhaps not the best thing you can do for your mental health. After all, some heterosexual players might be more private than others, but none of them will go out of their way (including telling downright lies) to hide the fact that they are straight.

I don’t need public figures to come out to make the world easier for me. I even think there is an argument to be made that it’s the other way around. We, the mostly nameless gays and lesbians, paved the road that led to nice stuff such as the legalisation of same-sex marriage, and one famous individual after another being openly gay, lesbian or bi.

But I also don’t see why people who play professional football in any of the big European competitions, should exclude themselves from the wonderful feeling of trusting other people’s decency and learning that they are strong enough to handle the surprisingly few truly ugly minds.

I’m giving away one paperback copy of Ravages, signed with a message of your choice. I will ship worldwide, so anyone can enter. Simply enter via the Book Giveaways form (no one but the site admins Fiona and Julie will see the details). I will randomly select the winner, and contact them for further information. I’d also love to hear from you via the comments, though!

New review of IN THE PRIVACY OF THEIR HOME

The timing of reviews is a continuing mystery to us, but nonetheless we’re always very pleased when a new one pops up out of the blue. In this case, we’re especially pleased to report that Divine Magazine, through a reviewer named Cat Clontz, seems to have been very impressed with IN THE PRIVACY OF THEIR HOME, the most recent title from our good friend R.A. Padmos.

As it’s quite a short review we’ll resist the temptation to quote too much of it, but we were particularly glad to see the following comments:

“This is a well written, sweet story that readily defines the attitudes, dangers, and scheming required to successfully navigate life as a gay man in the 1960s. … [O]nce it gets going, it is a lovely book with engaging characters that I am thankful to have been able to read.”

That’s exactly the sort of feedback every author dreams of, so thank you Cat Clontz – and congratulations R.A.!

Two new books released today!

Happy Sunday, everyone – and here we are with details of the two new titles which have been released this morning!

R.A. Padmos returns with a new tale about life in Kinbridge – the setting for her highly successful novel RAVAGES.  This time she delves into the city’s past – and into a society only just beginning to tolerate homosexual relationships between consenting couples in private – with the tale of Dylan and Max who, meeting by chance, must make adjustments before they can contemplate a life together; IN THE PRIVACY OF THEIR HOME is a fascinating study of a world which has long since – thank goodness! – ceased to be.

Another long-time absentee is Adam Fitzroy, returning with the tale of retired police officer Ted – determined to clear up the mystery surrounding an unexpected death on an isolated Scottish island – who meets and becomes attracted to the enigmatic Athol, thought by some to have guilty knowledge of the tragedy. Disentangling fact from rumour brings them closer together, and they find themselves sharing both perils and pleasures as the mystery unravels in IN DEEP.

The books are available from all our usual outlets – Smashwords, AllRomance, and of course from your regional Amazon – and we’re looking forward to hearing what you think of them!

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Our authors will be dropping in and out of the Goodreads Manifold Press group all day, so if you have any questions please hop on over and join the discuission.  There will also be a Twitter chat today at 10am PST / 1pm EST / 6pm GMT

Two new titles announced!

We’re delighted to announce two intriguing new books, to be published on 1 November 2015, and to welcome back two stalwart authors who have been missing from our list for far too long:

R.A. Padmos returns with a new tale about life in Kinbridge – the setting for her highly successful novel RAVAGES.  This time she delves into the city’s past – and into a society only just beginning to tolerate homosexual relationships between consenting couples in private – with the tale of Dylan and Max who, meeting by chance, must make adjustments before they can contemplate a life together; IN THE PRIVACY OF THEIR HOME is a fascinating study of a world which has long since – thank goodness! – ceased to be.

Another long-time absentee is Adam Fitzroy, returning with the tale of retired police officer Ted – determined to clear up the mystery surrounding an unexpected death on an isolated Scottish island – who meets and becomes attracted to the enigmatic Athol, thought by some to have guilty knowledge of the tragedy. Disentangling fact from rumour brings them closer together, and they find themselves sharing both perils and pleasures as the mystery unravels in IN DEEP.

We’re really glad to see these two popular authors returning after a long break, and looking forward immensely to their compelling new titles!