I’m an author of fantasy (Viking age/dragon-themed) and historical fiction (Early English, Vikings and the British Isles as a whole before the Norman Conquest). I was born in the old Mercian kingdom at some point since 1066. Raised in the shadow of a strange little building, told from a very young age that it housed the bones of long-dead Kings of Mercia and that our garden was littered with old pieces of pottery from a long-ago battle, it’s little wonder that my curiosity in Early England ran riot. I can only blame my parents!
I write A LOT. You’ve been warned!
Not sure where to start your journey through Early England? Here are some pointers.
If you like action-adventure, with a heavy dose of violence, foul language and good old camaraderie – The Ninth Century series is for you, starting with The Last King, or The Seventh Century, starting with Pagan Warrior, has a little more politics to go with the set-piece battles.
If you like stories about the forgotten women of history, then the Tenth Century series, starting with The Lady of Mercia’s Daughter, is a good place to begin. Or, The First Queen of England, with a little more romance.
If you’re interested in the last century of Early England (before 1066) then The Earls of Mercia series is for you.
If you want to read it all, then you can read in chronological order, or mix it up. The series weren’t written in chronological order.
Publication Date: September 1, 2020
eBook a& Paperback; 355 Pages
Genre: Historical Thriller
Malcom Van Doren made his fortune in the California Gold Rush of 1849.
By 1853, he spent it all, drowning in debt, and returned to his mine out of desperation.
Steadily, over the years, he went mad.
Known for his lunacy, when Malcom claimed to have discovered gold a second time, no one believed him… not even his family. Too paranoid about his creditors to prove his finding, Malcom Van Doren told everyone he hid his fortune away.
Now, in the year 1880, twenty-seven years after his second discovery, his daughters are each as desperate as he once was for wealth. All of them, for different reasons; revenge, love, or greed.
Three sisters battle to discover their dead father’s gold, but only one will win this race as their own little gold rush ensues.
God help the man that stands between a Golden Van Doren and all that glitters.
Nicole is a multi-genre author of over a dozen books.
“The Divorce” was nominated in the 2016 Indie Book Awards and won second place in the 2016 Best Cover Design in ‘Urban Literature Magazine.’
She was featured on the cover of Words + Magazine for her book “The Affair.”
She’s known for delving into sensitive and real topics such as in her title “The Love That Hurts” which explored domestic violence with the hopes of giving victims a voice while exposing the red flags of an abusive relationship. Most of her lead female characters are depicted as survivors or evolving overcomers of trauma. Sending a message to readers that every moment and every day they fight for is a victory.
Being of mixed ethnicity, she keeps her cast of characters diverse and tries to highlight the different cultures around the world.
Nicole lives in Virginia with her partner, three children, three stepsons, their amazing Grandparents, and one pretty Pocket-Pittie. She is always reading or working on the next book between mommyhood adventures.
The Lord of Ireland (The Fifth Knight, #3)
by E.M. Powell
Publication Date: April 5, 2016
Thomas & Mercer
Kindle, Paperback, Audiobook; 370 Pages
Series: The Fifth Knight
Genre: Historical Thriller
England, 1185. John is a prince without prospect of a crown. As the youngest son of Henry II, he has long borne the hated nickname ‘Lackland’. When warring tribes and an ambitious Anglo-Norman lord threaten Henry’s reign in Ireland, John believes his time has finally come. Henry is dispatching him there with a mighty force to impose order.
Yet it is a thwarted young man who arrives on the troubled isle. John has not been granted its kingship—he is merely the Lord of Ireland, destined never to escape his father’s shadow. Unknown to John, Henry has also sent his right-hand man, Sir Benedict Palmer, to root out the traitors he fears are working to steal the land from him.
But Palmer is horrified when John disregards Henry’s orders and embarks on a campaign of bloodshed that could destroy the kingdom. Now Palmer has to battle the increasingly powerful Lord of Ireland. Power, in John’s hands, is a murderous force—and he is only just beginning to wield it.
Praise for The Fifth Knight Series
“With her fast-paced mysteries set in the tumultuous reign of Henry II, E.M. Powell takes readers on enthralling, and unforgettable, journeys.” -Nancy Bilyeau, author of The Crown
“Both Fifth Novels are terrific. Benedict and Theodosia are not merely attractive characters: they are intensely real people.” -Historical Novels Review
“From the get-go you know you are in an adventure when you enter the world of E.M. Powell’s 12th century. Peril pins you down like a knight’s lance to the chest”-Edward Ruadh Butler, author of Swordland
E.M. Powell’s medieval thrillers The Fifth Knight and The Blood of the Fifth Knight have been number-one Amazon bestsellers and on the Bild bestseller list in Germany.
Born into the family of Michael Collins (the legendary revolutionary and founder of the Irish Free State) and raised in the Republic of Ireland, she lives in north-west England with her husband, daughter and a Facebook-friendly dog.
She reviews fiction and non-fiction for the Historical Novel Society, blogs for English Historical Fiction Authors and is a contributing editor to International Thriller Writers’ The Big Thrill magazine.
What if there was a drug that could help you remember past lives?
What if the lives you remembered could lead you to your one true love?
What if you learned that, for thousands of years, a deadly enemy had conspired to keep the two of you apart?
Bryan Pierce is an internationally famous artist whose paintings have dazzled the world. But there’s a secret to his success: Every canvas is inspired by an unusually vivid dream. When Bryan awakes, he possesses extraordinary new skills…like the ability to speak obscure languages and an inexplicable genius for chess. All his life, he has wondered if his dreams are recollections, if he is re-experiencing other people’s lives.
Linz Jacobs is a brilliant neurogeneticist, absorbed in decoding the genes that help the brain make memories, until she is confronted with an exact rendering of a recurring nightmare at one of Bryan’s shows. She tracks down the elusive artist, and their meeting triggers Bryan’s most powerful dream yet: visions of a team of scientists who, on the verge of discovering a cure for Alzheimer’s, died in a lab explosion decades ago.
As Bryan becomes obsessed with the mysterious circumstances surrounding the scientists’ deaths, his dreams begin to reveal what happened at the lab, as well as a deeper mystery that may lead all the way to ancient Egypt. Together, Bryan and Linz start to discern a pattern. But a deadly enemy watches their every move, and he will stop at nothing to ensure that the past stays buried.
A taut thriller and a timeless love story spanning six continents and 10,000 years of history, The Memory Painter by Gwendolyn Womack is a riveting debut novel unlike any you’ve ever read.
Praise for The Memory Painter
“Gwendolyn Womack’s tale dazzles.” (US Weekly (Standout Spring Novels))
“The guy-meets-girl story as you’ve never heard it before…A mind-explosion of a journey ensues that involves time travel, mystery, love, and a whole lot of plot twists.” (Refinery29)
“Suspenseful and ambitious…We predict The Memory Painter’s story of love and revenge will be one of 2015’s biggest literary hits.” (Paste Magazine (Best New Books of the Month))
“It’s a thriller as well as a love story, spanning 10,000 years of history. And it sounds freaking mental.” (io9, The Most Essential Science Fiction and Fantasy Books of the Month)
“Womack’s debut is one of those rare works that impresses from the first vivid, unsettling scene, gradually building an atmosphere of secrecy and trepidation that ensures that the suspense remains high throughout. Part mystery, part science-fiction plot and part romance, this is a novel with broad cross-genre appeal, and the well-drawn scenes and flashes of humor and insight give this thriller a rare depth as well.” (RT Book Reviews)
“It’s best not to try to analyze the ambitious plot of this thriller, which combines romance, fantasy, and adventure; just hang on for a wild and entertaining ride around the world and through the centuries back to ancient Egypt.” (Library Journal (starred review))
“A page turner that will keep readers up late into the night. Readers who love adventure, romance and fantasy will love this book.” (The Vancouver Sun)
“Womack makes a romantic case for the existence of destiny…and does a beautiful job…Dive into this sweeping, romantic journey that will leave you breathless and a little unsure of where in time you’ve landed.” (Kirkus Reviews (One of the Best Science Fiction, Fantasy, and Horror Reads of the Month))
“Well-drawn historical flashbacks, engaging characters, and a twisty ending make this thrilling blend of neuroscience, romance, and ancient worlds good bets for Da Vinci Code and Outlander fans.” (Booklist)
“Some debuts cause a stir. [But] The Memory Painter makes quite a splash… On its surface, The Memory Painter reads like sci-fi. Fundamentally it speaks to the cultural, emotional, and spiritual connectedness that binds us all.” (New York Journal of Books)
“The Memory Painter is romantic and fun, full of history and science teased out at the perfect pace.” (BookRiot)
“Womack has crafted a dark story defined by fast-paced prose that at moments sings poetic…at the novel’s conclusion, all story threads have been tightened into a snug, satisfying knot.” (ZYZZYVA)
“The chapters recounting [Bryan and Linz’s] past lives are chock full of interesting historical tidbits…like being on a movie-themed ride at Disneyland.” (Publishers Weekly)
“In The Memory Painter, Gwendolyn Womack delivers a multi-layered debut novel like no other: passing through the veils of time and brimming with history, mystery, science, intrigue, and passion.” (Katherine Neville, New York Times and No. 1 internationally bestselling author)
“The Memory Painter is an absolute masterpiece. Spellbinding from beginning to end, this brilliantly woven tale of time-crossed lovers will keep you hooked well into the wee hours. Gwendolyn Womack is a storytelling virtuosa, whose sexy, action-packed mind-boggler of a book is destined to become a classic.” (Anne Fortier, New York Times bestselling author of Juliet and The Lost Sisterhood)
“A sweeping, mesmerizing feat of absolute magic. Ten thousand love stories, tales of revenge, inventions, histories, mysteries, and memories combine to serve up a complex and utterly riveting novel that leaves you with feelings of awe and wonder. A star is born!” (M. J. Rose, New York Times bestselling author of The Witch of Painted Sorrows)
“Layers of past and present form a rich pastry of a narrative–poignant and thoughtful, rich and suspenseful, filled with intrigue and dripping with meaning. Womack’s meditation on the beautiful mystery of memory is a riveting read from cover to cover, leaving us with the breathless realization that while grief may be eternal, so is love.” (Charlie Lovett, New York Times bestselling author of The Bookman’s Tale and First Impressions)
Originally from Houston, Texas, Gwendolyn Womack began writing theater plays in college while freezing in the tundra at the University of Alaska, Fairbanks. During that time she lived in St. Petersburg, Russia on an independent study working with theater companies. She went on to receive an MFA from California Institute of the Arts in Directing theater and film where she was encouraged to write her own material. After graduating she focused on writing feature screenplays and was a semi-finalist in the Academy’s Nicholl Fellowship. In 2009 she moved to Japan and began THE MEMORY PAINTER the following year. Currently she resides in Los Angeles with her husband and son where she can be found at the keyboard working on her next novel.
To enter to win a signed copy of The Memory Painter, please enter via the GLEAM form below.
– Giveaway ends at 11:59pm EST on July 15th. You must be 18 or older to enter.
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– Winner has 48 hours to claim prize or new winner is chosen.
Please join E.M. Powell as she tours the blogosphere with HF Virtual Book Tours for The Blood of the Fifth Knight, from January 1-February 6.
Publication Date: January 1, 2015
Thomas & Mercer
Formats: eBook, Paperback
Genre: Historical Thriller
A triumphant sequel to Powell’s acclaimed historical thriller The Fifth Knight. A desperate king trusts a lone knight to unravel a web of murder.
England, 1176. King Henry II has imprisoned his rebellious Queen for her failed attempt to overthrow him. But with her conspirators still at large and a failed assassination attempt on his beautiful mistress, Rosamund Clifford, the King must take action to preserve his reign.
Desperate, Henry turns to the only man he trusts: a man whose skills have saved him once before. Sir Benedict Palmer answers the call, mistakenly believing that his family will remain safe while he attends to his King.
As Palmer races to secure his King’s throne, neither man senses the hand of a brilliant schemer, a mystery figure loyal to Henry’s traitorous Queen who will stop at nothing to see the King defeated.
The Blood of the Fifth Knight is an intricate medieval murder mystery and worthy sequel to E.M. Powell’s acclaimed historical thriller The Fifth Knight.
Review Praise for The Fifth Knight
“Powell does a masterful job. Highly recommended.” Historical Novels Review
About the Author
E.M. Powell is the author of medieval thriller THE FIFTH KNIGHT which was a #1 Amazon Bestseller. Born and raised in the Republic of Ireland into the family of Michael Collins (the legendary revolutionary and founder of the Irish Free State) she now lives in the north west of England with her husband and daughter and a Facebook-friendly dog. She is a member of the Historical Novel Society, International Thriller Writers and Romance Writers of America. She is a reviewer of fiction and non-fiction for the HNS. Find out more by visiting www.empowell.com. You can also connect with her on Facebook, Twitter, and Goodreads.
In the surreal and paranoid underworld of wartime Prague, fugitive lovers Felix Andel and Magdalena Ruza make some dubious alliances – with a mysterious Roman Catholic cardinal, a reckless sculptor intent on making a big political statement, and a gypsy with a risky sex life. As one by one their chances for fleeing the country collapse, the two join a plot to assassinate Hitler’s nefarious Minister of Public Enlightenment and Propaganda, Josef Goebbels.
But the assassination attempt goes wildly wrong, propelling the lovers in separate directions.
Felix’s destiny is sealed at the Bone Church, a mystical pilgrimage site on the outskirts of Prague, while Magdalena is thrust even deeper into the bowels of a city that betrayed her and a homeland soon to be swallowed by the Soviets. As they emerge from the shadowy fog of World War II, and stagger into the foul haze of the Cold War, Felix and Magdalena must confront the past, and a dangerous, uncertain future.
Victoria Dougherty writes fiction, drama, and essays that often revolve around spies, killers, curses and destinies. Her work has been published or profiled in The New York Times, USA Today, International Herald Tribune and elsewhere. Earlier in her career, while living in Prague, she co-founded Black Box Theater, translating, producing and acting in several Czech plays. She lives with her husband and children in Charlottesville, Virginia.
Please join author Timothy L. O’Brien as he tours with Historical Fiction Virtual Book Tours for his historical thriller novel, The Lincoln Conspiracy, from October 29 – December 7!
Release Date: September 18, 2012 Publisher: Ballantine Books 368p
A nation shattered by its president’s murder.
Two diaries that reveal the true scope of an American conspiracy.
A detective determined to bring the truth to light, no matter what it costs him.
From award-winning journalist Timothy L. O’Brien comes a gripping historical thriller that poses a provocative question: What if the plot to assassinate President Lincoln was wider and more sinister than we ever imagined?
In late spring of 1865, as America mourns the death of its leader, Washington, D.C., police detective Temple McFadden makes a startling discovery. Strapped to the body of a dead man at the B&O Railroad station are two diaries, two documents that together reveal the true depth of the Lincoln conspiracy. Securing the diaries will put Temple’s life in jeopardy–and will endanger the fragile peace of a nation still torn by war.
Temple’s quest to bring the conspirators to justice takes him on a perilous journey through the gaslit streets of the Civil War-era capital, into bawdy houses and back alleys where ruthless enemies await him in every shadowed corner. Aided by an underground network of friends–and by his wife, Fiona, a nurse who possesses a formidable arsenal of medicinal potions–Temple must stay one step ahead of Lafayette Baker, head of the Union Army’s spy service. Along the way, he’ll run from or rely on Edwin Stanton, Lincoln’s fearsome secretary of war; the legendary Scottish spymaster Allan Pinkerton; abolitionist Sojourner Truth; the photographer Alexander Gardner; and many others.
Bristling with twists and building to a climax that will leave readers gasping, The Lincoln Conspiracy offers a riveting new account of what truly motivated the assassination of one of America’s most beloved presidents–and who participated in the plot to derail the train of liberty that Lincoln set in motion.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Timothy L. O’Brien (www.timothylobrien.com) is the Executive Editor of The Huffington Post, where he edited the 2012 Pulitzer Prize-winning series about wounded war veterans, “Beyond the Battlefield.” Previously, he was an editor and reporter at The New York Times. There, he helped to lead a team of Times reporters that was a finalist for a Pulitzer Prize in Public Service in 2009 for coverage of the financial crisis.
Prior to becoming Sunday Business editor at The New York Times in 2006, Tim was a staff writer for the Times. Among the topics and people he has written about for the paper are Wall Street, Russia, Manhattan’s art world, cybercrimes and identity theft, Warren Buffett, geopolitics, digital media, international finance, Hollywood, terrorism and terrorist financing, money laundering, gambling, and white-collar fraud. Tim was a member of a team of Times reporters that won a Loeb Award for Distinguished Business Journalism in 1999.
Before returning to the Times in 2003, Tim was the senior feature writer at Talk, a magazine founded by former New Yorker editor Tina Brown. Tim was with Talk from 2000 until it ceased publishing in 2002. Before joining Talk, Tim was a reporter with the Times and, prior to that, The Wall Street Journal.
O’Brien, a graduate of Georgetown University, holds three master’s degrees — in US History, Business and Journalism — all from Columbia University. He lives in Montclair, New Jersey, with his wife and two children.