Manifold Press paperbacks

The Press doesn’t issue paperback editions of all our titles, as the decision to do so is driven by the individual authors. That being said, we’re delighted with the twenty titles that have made it into print thus far! There are new ones on the way, so it seemed to be a good time to take stock of what we have so far.

A veritable rainbow of books from Manifold Press!
A veritable rainbow of books from Manifold Press!

Our current paperback titles are listed here, along with Amazon US buy links:

The Apothecary's Garden paperback coverAlways With Us by Morgan Cheshire

The Apothecary’s Garden by Julie Bozza

Between Now and Then by Adam Fitzroy

Butterfly Hunter (#1) by Julie Bozza

Of Dreams and Ceremonies (Butterfly Hunter #2) by Julie Bozza

The Thousand Smiles of Nicholas Goring (Butterfly Hunter #3) by Julie Bozza

The Butterfly Hunter Trilogy (incorporating all three novels plus the free short story Like Leaves to a Tree) by Julie Bozza

Dear Mister President by Adam Fitzroy

Make Do and Mend paperback coverThe Definitive Albert J. Sterne (incorporating the novel and the stories published separately in the eBook Albert J. Sterne: Future Bright, Past Imperfect) by Julie Bozza

Ghost Station by Adam Fitzroy

Homosapien … a fantasy about pro wrestling by Julie Bozza

Make Do and Mend by Adam Fitzroy

Mitch Rebecki Gets a Life by Julie Bozza

A Pride of Poppies Modern LGBTQIA Fiction of the Great War – anthology including stories by Julie Bozza, Barry Brennessel, Charlie Cochrane, Sam Evans, Lou Faulkner, Adam Fitzroy, Wendy C. Fries, Z. McAspurren, Eleanor Musgrove and Jay Lewis Taylor

A Pride of Poppies - paperback coverRavages by R.A. Padmos

Solemn Contract by Morgan Cheshire

Stage Whispers by Adam Fitzroy

A Threefold Cord by Julie Bozza

The ‘True Love’ Solution by Julie Bozza

The Valley of the Shadow of Death by Julie Bozza

We hope you’ll enjoy these paperback editions and – like us! – are looking forward to more titles coming soon.

AUTHOR GUEST BLOG NUMBER TWENTY EIGHT – Julie Bozza

The Valley of the Shadow of Death

THE VALLEY OF THE SHADOW OF DEATHThis novel began life some years ago as a screenplay for a film, as that seemed the ideal format for the story I wanted to tell. A cop and a mobster in Chicago finding an unlikely connection, and living for months in a dangerous limbo between their different worlds. Settings included homes and warehouses, a walk-in freezer and a bar fronting a gambling den, police stations and offices and courtrooms, a claustrophobic safe house and a few stolen hours of freedom outside the city. I imagined the actors having a fine time of it with Delaney, the cop whose naivety enables him to think ‘outside the box’, and Trezini, the mobster with a sense of irony.

Such things all seemed ideal for a film, so that’s how I initially wrote it. I got some good responses to the script, but it just wasn’t going to happen. I suspect the film industry is even harder to break into than the mainstream publishing industry, and (alas!) if I was ever going to break through this wasn’t the script that would do it for me.

So, eventually I decided to retell the story in novel form – and some while after that, it found a home with Manifold Press.

I suspect the filmic origins are sometimes obvious in the novel – especially the montage sequences! (I love a good montage.) There seemed no point in scrapping the whole thing and starting again with a blank page – though maybe I should have…? Instead I ‘converted’ the screenplay to prose, scene by scene. I was glad to be able to add in extra material, as there is a lot more room available in a novel. Also, I had to find ways of telling / showing elements in prose narrative rather than visually. Film is a very visual medium, and is far more about the visuals than dialogue. Of course, novels are all about the words, though they may convey visuals.

Another change I had to make was to be more specific about certain things. A film is a real team effort, involving all kinds of talented professionals. Hence, one of the rules about writing a screenplay is that you don’t try to tell those professionals how to do their job. You give them the necessary information about the story, perhaps including a few details that evoke the mood or specify the function of a scene. And then you step away and let them apply their own skills and experience to helping create the final result.

For example, if it’s absolutely vital to the story that the viewer can or can’t see a particular thing on screen, then say so in the script. Otherwise, let the DoP work the magic of cinematography! If it’s vital to the story that a character do or say something in a particular way, then write it that way or say so. Otherwise, let the actor interpret and present the role, and add their own layers to it. Film is a real collaboration, and is all the richer for it.

… You may have gathered by now that there’s still a part of me who is a frustrated film writer! And, indeed, even when I’m writing novels and stories, I still think in terms of film. That’s how I see the story play out in my mind, and my task is then to convert it into words. Which at times is far easier said than done!


If you’d care to read the results in this particular case, click here for the details of The Valley of the Shadow of Death. You may like to know, however, that while this is a love story, it is not a romance!

Price reductions on old favourites

2016 is going to be a year of changes throughout MANIFOLD PRESS – which we’ll explain in more detail as we go along. However we thought we’d start out gently with permanent price reductions on a handful of our classic titles.

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ALOES by Chris Quinton – now $4.95!

A fluke accident puts Perry in a coma. When he awakes, his scrambled synapses have given him a talent; he can tell truth from lies simply by their flavour. This, plus the new client who is far too attractive for Perry’s peace of mind, the client’s contentious family and the dilapidated old mansion Perry has to restore for him – not to mention anonymous threats which escalate to attempted murder – all ensure that Perry’s life will never be the same again!

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ALWAYS WITH US by Morgan Cheshire – now $5.95!

Liverpool, 1896: Wealthy Harrison Calderwood has never given much thought to the poor of the bustling city until he accidentally runs into firebrand Daniel Harper. Through Daniel’s eyes he begins to see how much more could be done to improve the lot of the working people, and at the same time he begins to feel a very strong attraction towards Daniel himself. However this is the Victorian era, Daniel is believed to be a troublemaker, and Harrison has a position to maintain and a family who are expecting him to marry a well-to-do young woman and settle down to a conventional life …

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HOMOSAPIEN by Julie Bozza – now $4.95

Patrick and David are friends who run a gay bookstore, and life seems simple and safe enough until the day when unexpectedly he walks in – six feet tall, gorgeous and built like a dream. But Homosapien isn’t welcome in their world; he’s a professional wrestler, and everything he does is fake. So he can’t really be gay, can he, or interested in either one of them? Can they even trust a single word he says … ?

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SEA CHANGE by Chris Quinton – now $6.95!

Injured on duty and no longer fit for active service, soon-to-be-ex-Coast Guard Bran Kaulana is drifting, filling his days helping out at the Wai Ola Rescue Center, one of Honolulu’s wildlife charities. He’s working with the new veterinary, Steve, a man drawn to O’ahu by his fascination with dolphins. As their friendship slowly deepens into love, the two men are caught up in the mystery of injured seals and dolphins, a ruthless gang of smugglers and a not-so-dormant undersea lava vent.

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THE VALLEY OF THE SHADOW OF DEATH by Julie Bozza – now $4.95!

Joshua Delaney and Carmine Angelo Trezini, cop and mobster, should have absolutely nothing in common; yet, accidentally brought together, they rapidly became both lovers and allies against important crime figure Matthew Picano. Of course, taking down a man like that was never going to be easy – but Josh has no idea of the scale of the sacrifice he will eventually be called upon to make.

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If you missed any of these diverse and fascinating titles earlier in their illustrious careers, this would be a wonderful opportunity of making their acquaintance!

Fifth Day winner

Thank you again to everyone who entered our Fifth Day draw; it’s wonderful to have so many of you joining in – and to those who were unlucky this time, we hope you’ll be with us again tomorrow.

Today’s winner is Tame, who has chosen to receive Julie Bozza’s THE VALLEY OF THE SHADOW OF DEATH; congratulations, and we’ll get this to you as soon as possible, Tame! Meanwhile, the Sixth Day draw is about to open, and we’re looking forward to seeing everybody again there…

Statistics for June / uploads to partner sites

Apologies for not posting these yesterday; the Press took a day off to visit its mother and see ‘Despicable Me 2’. (One of these activities was more enjoyable than the other!)

Our best-seller for June through the Press website was Adam’s BETWEEN NOW AND THEN, but for the second month running the highest-selling title overall has been Jane’s oustandingly popular ABOVE ALL.

We’ve uploaded our previous two titles – Morgan Cheshire’s ALWAYS WITH US and Julie Bozza’s highly-acclaimed THE APOTHECARY’S GARDEN – to our partner sites, Rainbow, All Romance, Kindle and Smashwords, and THE APOTHECARY’S GARDEN is also now available in a Print on Demand paperback edition.

For anyone still interested in monitoring our response times – which we record on a routine basis – the average for the three months to 1 July was 5 hours and 45 minutes.

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Sharp-eyed readers may have noticed that the covers for our new books differ slightly in format from the ones we’ve been using up until now. Over the next few months we’ll be introducing a new set of covers across the board (including to Smashwords, where we’ll eventually replace the temporary ones). In most cases the difference will be extremely subtle – a new font, and a slightly different crop of the image – although unfortunately with both Julie’s THE VALLEY OF THE SHADOW OF DEATH and Chris’s FOOL’S ERRAND we’ve been unable to get hold of higher-resolution versions of the original picture and have had to do the best we can with the nearest equivalent. The plan at the moment is to have all these new covers rolled out everywhere on or before 1 November, however, so watch this space!

Two new books now available to buy

Our two new titles are now available to buy – Julie Bozza’s ALBERT J. STERNE: FUTURE BRIGHT, PAST IMPERFECT and Chris Quinton’s FOX HUNT and we look forward to your reactions to them both! In the past hour we have also uploaded Julie Bozza’s THE VALLEY OF THE SHADOW OF DEATH and Adam Fitzroy’s GHOST STATION to both AllRomance and Rainbow for the benefit of those who have struggles with our online shop facility.

New review of ‘The Valley of the Shadow of Death’

THE VALLEY OF THE SHADOW OF DEATHIn a wonderful example of ‘swings and roundabouts’, a review of Julie’s THE VALLEY OF THE SHADOW OF DEATH has just appeared at Top2Bottom Reviews which expresses a point of view very different from the previous one!

I really liked the premise for The Valley of the Shadow of Death. I love a good redemption story, as well as the gay-for-you storyline; that there is someone out there in the world who can redefine and alter the labels one places upon oneself, for the sake of love.

It’s always satisfying to know that a book has made contact with a reader who really ‘gets it’, and reviewer Lisa is obviously one of those who do!

New review of ‘The Valley of the Shadow of Death’

Not an unmixed reception from reviewer Cryselle at Jessewave for Julie’s THE VALLEY OF THE SHADOW OF DEATH, to which she gave three stars out of five.

The ending is as tragic as the title promises, the last line the most moving in the entire work. The entire story improves as it goes on; had I not been reading for review, I would have bailed before page 60 for insta-love and implausibility, and would have missed the best parts.

It’s a shame the book didn’t work for this particular reviewer, but you can’t please all of the people all of the time; that doesn’t mean we’re going to stop trying, though! ;-D

New review of ‘The Valley of the Shadow of Death’

Julie Bozza’s THE VALLEY OF THE SHADOW OF DEATH has been reviewed today at the MM Good Book Reviews website. Amongst other things the reviewer, Pixie, seems to have become very enamoured of Angelo:

This is a well written book that has a very good story-line and plot. Angelo is the guy that I fell in love with in this book. He just seems to live life to the fullest, embracing his love for Josh and just going with it without procrastinating about how soon it is or the fact that the man was straight.

Year Two Week Twenty-Eight

Another thoroughly successful week, we’re delighted to say! It’s beginning to feel as if we’ve really made it at last, through the tricky part of setting this Press up and getting it going, and have now fallen into a modestly successful groove. In particular we’re very pleased to have the final drafts of our two titles for 1 February release already to hand, enabling our loyal proof-reading staff to work on them at their leisure over the winter. There are also more projects in the pipeline than we can ever hope to shake a stick at, with most of our existing authors already beavering away on new titles to set before you in due course.

Our top seller this week was Julie Bozza’s THE VALLEY OF THE SHADOW OF DEATH, with Jane Elliot’s END OF THE TRAIL, once again performing strongly, pushing it all the way. Average response time was pretty creditable at two hours 45 minutes – not at all to be sneezed at, we feel.

The only slightly depressing item to report is the lack of enthusiasm following our call for stories on an Olympic theme. It seems that, on the whole, writers and readers are not inspired by thoughts of the Olympics, and with that in mind it’s likely a decision will soon be made to cancel the project. This is therefore absolutely the last invitation to contribute to our Olympic anthology; if we receive no more positive responses within the next seven days, we’ll formally call proceedings to a halt and concentrate our energies elsewhere. If there’s no interest at this stage, there’s unlikely to be any market for it either; therefore we’ll redirect our efforts towards books that are more likely to find a ready audience – although we still believe that it was worth a try!