I have published a fantasy novel. Called Hidden Fire, it is the first in a series of four novels and two, possibly three short stories, or novellas (I haven’t quite worked that out yet) set among the Northern Isles and Empire of Belenos in the world of Erce. It’s a world where magic, called Fire, is real and each nation has it’s own approach to Fire. Some embrace it, others fear it, while others outright deny its existence.
The world is seen through the eyes of Lizzy Albon – sometimes known as Lizzy Fitzroy, sometimes as Her Highness, Elizabeth, the Princess Royal, and, later in the series, as Lady Arun. She navigates a complex political and religious world that by turns loves and despises her.
About the main character
Lizzy is wilful, spoilt and not nearly as clever as she thinks she is. Allowed a lot of freedom in her youth and raised by her atheist uncle, Duke Michael of Albon in a devoutly religious country, she doesn’t believe in magic or gods. She doesn’t really believe in all that much until she comes under the influence of Sarah, her Lady-in-Waiting. Sarah opens Lizzy’s eyes to a world that does not revolve around her.
Her life is scrutinised by the priest of The One, called Curates, and insultingly known as ‘crows’ for their all black attire and squawking sermons; they condemn her romantic relationships, her behaviour and her friends. They even hate her clothes. A trend setter among the young and a patron of fashion designers and dress makers, she’s accused of destroying morals and making a laughing stock of social behavioural codes. Which doesn’t bother Lizzy one bit, because that’s what she wants to do.
I like Lizzy, she’s been hanging around in my head for years, and it’s about time she got into other people’s heads instead.
About Hidden Fire (The FIRE series #1)
In my first novel, Hidden Fire, released as a paperback on 2nd May 2017 and as a Kindle ebook on 17th June 2017, Lizzy has to grow up quickly. She’s wealthy, spoilt and deeply loved by her father, King John VII of Albon, the largest island in the Northern Isles, and hated by her step-mother, Queen Jocinta Tarjani, the granddaughter of the High Lord of Sumoast, the second largest island in the archipelago. Jealous of Lizzy’s influence over the king and their sons, Jocinta tries various ways to get rid of her husband’s daughter. When she’s caught and exiled, Lizzy has to take her place in ceremonial matters and help raise her brothers. She learns that sooner or later, everyone has to grow up. When her friend Gos Val, living in the Imperial capital of Belenos as Assistant Ambassador, goes missing at the hands of Jocinta’s cousin Hakon Tarjani, Lizzy and her companions must make the dangerous journey to the Empire to find and rescue Gos. They must try to stop the war that has already begun.
The second book in the series, Fire Betrayed, will be available in late 2017.