Archive for the ‘Books’ Category

It has been a while coming, but the latest instalment in the Nicolette Mace: the Raven Siren series is finally here.

lilyandrose

Though releases like Sabrina may have kept your Siren cravings satisfied for a short while, finally book 4 in the main saga is here to answer questions about what happened to Fred, Siren, Rick and yes, Harry too.

“I wasn’t going to write more than three books in the main Siren narrative, but the Lily & Rose Saga was a book that just was begging to be written, after all, it didn’t feel right to leave the fate of Fred and Siren hanging in limbo forever.” – C.S. Woolley

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The Lily & Rose Saga is set a few years after the events of the Derek Long Saga, so there is a little bit of a time lapse that readers can fill in the gaps for. It is also the penultimate book in the main narrative.

“The only main narrative book that is left to do is Legacy. Once that is done, then it will be the end of the Siren series. Before Legacy comes though there are a fair few of the shorter infill books planned and there is a bumper collection of five books that will contain all the Siren stories in chronological order – just to make it a little easier to read.” – C.S. Woolley

Verycool

Though it is nearly the end of the road for the sassy private detective, the Lily & Rose Saga is out now in paperback and digital formats.

 

We have something a little different for you all today, rather than posting about Good Friday and the symbolism of Easter, the Mightier Than the Sword UK blog is being taken over not by one of our authors, but by one of the characters.

We are handing over the blog to Cassandra, guardian of the wilds from the Chronicles of Celadmore series for a look at the downsides to being immortal, at least as far as she is concerned.

Something that all mortals seem to yearn for is a way to cheat death, to live beyond their years and often trying to gain immortality. There are some who spend their entire lives seeking eternal youth combine with eternal life, and others that come to the conclusion that they need to live longer when the autumn years of their life descend.

But no matter how they try to cheat death, they cannot escape it. But living forever is not all that it seems to be. There are several reasons that I have found that make immortality particularly unpalatable.

  1. Finding the armour you had 300 years ago is back in style and you have no idea where you left it.
  2. Keeping large amounts of gold in one location invariably leads to adventurers trying to either rob you, battle you for your gold hoard or creating grandiose myths that cause armies to try and storm your home.
  3. Keeping gold in multiple locations leads to you having to draw a map to keep track of where all of it is kept. after 100 years, people steal it thinking it is a treasure map.
  4. Being a great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great grandmother not only is a bit of a mouthful, but the only other person that can relate to how old it makes you feel is your mother.
  5. Trying to keep the same waist line over the millennia is a lot harder than most people think.
  6. Watching mortals bicker is funny at first, but after 2,000 years it becomes rather boring when the same arguments keeping coming around. You begin to wonder how it is that they haven’t worked out some kind of compromise.
  7. When someone finds your diary from your teenage years and they start gushing about discovering an ancient manuscript in a dead language that must hold the knowledge of ancients is actually quite hurtful.
  8. You have to spend your entire existence watching those that you love wither and die before your eyes. No matter how many times it happens, the pain only seems to grow as you carry more loss in your heart. It keeps growing until you stop caring and will death to take you.

Curious as to why Cassandra is so concerned with making immortality sound less attractive? You’ll be able to find out on Monday when When Darkness Falls, book 7 in the Chronicles of Celadmore is released.

WDF Coming

Today is the day! Wyrd has finally been released after several delays. Yes, you can now step back in time to the 700s with this Anglo Saxon series, set before the Viking invasion, the Children of Snotingas follows a group of children as King Penda separates from Northumbria and the kingdom of Mercia is born.

Wyrd is the first book in the series and marks the start of the first story arc of 8 books that explore the lives of nobles and slaves alike during the time of the Anglo Saxons. Using historical accounts, C.S. Woolley has pieced together this world and the events that occurred 1300 years ago in order to bring them to life for children and adults alike.

The Children of Snotingas

Book 1:WYRD
Wyrd mock up

Wyrd: Book 1 The Children of Snotingas by C.S. Woolley, artwork by Davy Ross

 

Step back in time to the age of King Penda, when the kingdom of Mercia was born.

Life in Anglo-Saxon England is far from fair. There are strict classes that all people fall into. At the top there are the kings, then the thanes. After the thanes come the warriors, then the ceorls, and at the very bottom are the slaves. Women are not equal to men; and then there are the prisoners.

With Mercia breaking away from Northumbria and war stirring the blood, there are a handful of boys that want to change their lot in life and move from being slaves to warriors. Wayland, Halsey and Channing are the sons of slaves that have the chance to change their stars and train with the sons of the ceorls to become warriors in Snot’s army. Ravinger, the youngest son of Snot, has been put in charge of their training.

But all is not well in Snotingas. Kipp, Morven and Nyle are prisoners of Snot, captured sons of the Thane’s of Northumbria, and they are determined to cause as many problems as they can for their captors. Though the sons of Snotingas are preparing for battle, the sons of Northumbria still have to contend with the daughters of Snotingas.

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It has been a day of excitement and squealing in the Mightier Than the Sword UK offices today. You may think there is nothing new there as we work in a world of books where geeks roam freely, but today has been a time when there has been a lot more squealing than normal.

The reason for all the squealing and excitement is that the photography of the completed arm rings of Yngvar has arrived and, well judge for yourself how beautiful it looks.

bt_bronze_bracelets

We will admit that after the initial moment of awe had come and gone, the only person who kept squealing was C.S. Woolley, but it isn’t every day that you see the magical inventions of your imagination carefully crafted in bronze and ready to ship. (There is now a theory floating around that C.S. Woolley might actually be Sauron and that the arm rings are a cunning plot to enslave the world and plunge all the lands into a second darkness – we’ll keep you posted on that one).

But here is a closer look at each with a run down of which arm ring belongs to which book and how much you can get your very own arm ring for. Each has been crafted from solid bronze and made by hand using traditional Viking methods.

Thor’s Hammer Arm Ring

bt_thorshammer_bracelet_bronzeThis particular arm ring belongs to Erland and is guarded by the Disir, Aldis. Found in the cave close to the town of Lindholm, it is the first arm ring to be found and claimed. It is discovered in FATE.

Price: £35

UK Delivery: Free

International Delivery: £2.95

FATE Arm Ring Gift Set: £40 (includes a paperback and digital copy of FATE and the Thor’s Hammer Arm Ring)

 

Dragon Head Twisted Arm Ring

bt_4mm_dragon_bracelet_bronzeThe dragon head arm ring is found by Riki is WAR. It is guarded by Thormar the dragon on the island of Fyn. It is the second arm ring to be claimed.

Price: £30

UK Delivery: Free

International Delivery: £2.95

WAR Arm Ring Gift Set: £35 (includes a paperback and digital copy of WAR and the Dragon Head Twisted Arm Ring)

 

Wolf Head Twisted Arm Ring

bt_4mm_wolf_bracelet_bronzeThough you might have expected this to belong to Eva, this is actually Dalla’s arm ring. Found in the book WIFRITH, it is the third arm ring to be claimed and is guarded by Oda the Ellepige.

Price: £30

UK Delivery: Free

International Delivery: £2.95

WIFRITH Arm Ring Gift Set: £35 (includes a paperback and digital copy of WIFRITH and the Wolf Head Twisted Arm Ring)

 

Danish Bracelet Arm Ring

bt_danish_bracelet_bronzeThe fourth arm ring of Yngvar to be found and claimed is the Danish Bracelet Arm Ring. It is found in DOUBT by Beatrix in the land of Álfheimr and is guarded by Þiagn the elf.

Price: £35

UK Delivery: Free

International Delivery: £2.95

DOUBT Arm Ring Gift Set: £40 (includes a paperback and digital copy of DOUBT and the Danish Bracelet Arm Ring)

 

Odin’s Raven Twisted Arm Ring

bt_4mm_raven_head_bracelet_bronzeThe fifth of the arm rings to be found. The Odin’s Raven Twisted Arm Ring was found by Pieter on Skåne in the book of the same name. It is guarded by Pernille the Pesta.

Price: £30

UK Delivery: Free

International Delivery: £2.95

SKÅNE Arm Ring Gift Set: £35 (includes a paperback and digital copy of SKÅNE and the Odin’s Raven Twisted Arm Ring)

 

Ship Bracelet Viking Arm Ring

bt_ship_bracelet_bronzeWhen a book is entitled SHIPWRECKED it is only fitting that the arm ring of Yngvar should be emblazoned with a ship. This arm ring is found by Camila and is the sixth arm ring to be claimed. It is guarded by Tokki the Draug.

Price: £35

UK Delivery: Free

International Delivery: £2.95

SHIPWRECKED Arm Ring Gift Set: £40 (includes a paperback and digital copy of SHIPWRECKED and the Ship Bracelet Arm Ring)

 

Valknut Bracelet Arm Ring

bt_valknut_bracelet_bronze

Guarded by Maren the Havsrå, this arm ring is found by Christian during the events of FEAR. It is the seventh arm ring to be found and was hidden close to the town of Roskilde.

Price: £35

UK Delivery: Free

International Delivery: £2.95

FEAR Arm Ring Gift Set: £40 (includes a paperback and digital copy of FEAR and the Valknut Bracelet Arm Ring)

 

Jutland Bracelet Arm Ring

bt_jutland_bracelet_bronze_newThe final arm ring of Yngvar to be found during the events of HOME. It is claimed by Eva under the town of Ribe and guarded by Stefan, king of the Dvergar.

Price: £35

UK Delivery: Free

International Delivery: £2.95

HOME Arm Ring Gift Set: £40 (includes a paperback and digital copy of HOME and the Valknut Bracelet Arm Ring)

There are currently 4 large Jutland bracelet arm rings available that are suitable for men’s wrists for £50 each including free UK delivery.

 

Want the whole set?

bt_bronze_braceletsIf you just can’t decide which arm ring to buy, then you can get the whole set.

Price: £230

UK Delivery: Free

International Delivery: £11.80

 

The prices are based on the size and weight of the arm ring. The Twisted Arm Rings are lighter than the bracelets and the Jutland Bracelet is the heaviest of all the arm rings. To order simply visiting https://PayPal.Me/mttsuk/ and entering the amount due for the arm ring or gift set you want to purchase along with the additional comment of the name and address of the recipient. If you also include an email address, then a receipt and confirmation of shipping can be sent to you.

You can also order by emailing office@mightierthanthesworduk.com providing details of which items you want and where they are to be shipped, an invoice will be sent to you for the items ordered and once payment has been made your order will be dispatched.

Alternatively you can visit the Etsy Store to make a purchase.

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With things in the process of changing around the Mightier Than the Sword UK Publications offices, we’ve had some delays and reworkings of release dates. To make it slightly easier to know what’s due to be released and when here is our guide to March and April.

March 2017

The Arm Rings of Yngvar Collection is the 31st book by C.S. Woolley to be published. It contains FATE, WAR, WIFRITH, DOUBT, SKANE, SHIPWRECKED, FEAR and HOME all in a single volume.

Brother is the debut novel from Marlena R. Smith and is a Military Science Fiction story about brothers-in-arms.

All Hallows’ Eve in Stickleback Hollow is the second book in the series and takes place a few weeks after the first instalment in the series, A Thief in Stickleback Hollow (which is also the perfect gift for Mother’s Day).

April 2017

April sees the delayed release of WYRD, book 1 in the Children of Snotingas series and When Darkness Falls, the long anticipated sequel to End of Days.

April is also when we see the latest instalment in the Raven Siren main narrative, the Lily & Rose Saga, following on from the Derek Long Saga and finally gives readers some answers as to what happened to Fred and Siren.

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C.. Woolley (right) and Lindow Deputy Head, Mrs Lomas (left)

World Book Day comes but once a year and it sees children dressing up as their favourite book characters, taking their favourite books to school and really engaging with reading.

Some schools go the extra mile and bring in special visitors for the day – which is exactly what happened at Lindow Primary School in Cheshire.

Not only did they invite our company founder and prolific author, C.S. Woolley to spend the day with the staff and students of the school, but also asked her to official open the new school library, “booktropolis”.

C.S. Woolley barely stopped throughout the day from giving a talk and opening the library during the whole school assembly, to running a writing workshop with years 5 and 6 between the first break and lunch. Her lunch time was spent talking to dyslexic students about what they found difficult and the afternoon saw years 3 and 4 taking part in a writing workshop too.

You can read the newspaper write-up of the event here.

C.S. Woolley has written two children’s book series – the Children of Ribe and the Children of Snotingas. Both are historically accurate fictions for children that have been formatted to specifically help dyslexic children with their reading.

The Children of Ribe is set in Viking Denmark and follows a group of children from the ages of 10 to 18 as they search for the arm rings of Yngvar – magical artefacts that have the power to save the town of Ribe from the evil forces that threaten it.

The books include:

  1. FATE
  2. WAR
  3. WIFRITH
  4. DOUBT
  5. SKANE
  6. SHIPWRECKED
  7. FEAR
  8. HOME

(There are another 16 books to come yet in the series – you can find out more about the books here)

The Children of Snotingas is set in Anglo Saxon England and follows the formation of the kingdom of Mercia as they split from Northumbria. The series takes a in depth look at the lives of the nobles, the warriors, the ceorls and the slaves as well as the prisoners that were taken. The series involves real people from the Anglo Saxon times in a similar way to how Bernard Cornwell’s Sharpe and C.S. Forester’s Hornblower involve historical figures and the events that were unfolding at the time.

 

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C.S. Woolley as Ciara the Volva from the Children of Ribe series

This series has also been formatted to help dyslexic children with reading and has also been written so that it can be used as a teaching aid when children are learning about the Anglo Saxons in primary school.

The first book in the series, WYRD, is due for publication soon. The original publication date was delayed due to problems with the cover art, but we are working hard to rectify those as soon as possible.

If you are interested in purchasing any of C.S. Woolley’s books (or the arm ring merchandise that accompanies the Children of Ribe series) you can buy them direct from our Etsy Store. All the books in the Children of Ribe and Children of Snotingas series come with free UK postage and packaging, the option of having the books signed by the author, free gift wrapping and a free coloured overlay that comes in a choice of six colours.

For parents and student of Lindow Community Primary School, all orders placed through the Etsy Store by the end of Monday 6th March will be brought to the school by C.S. Woolley on Friday  10th March – all signed by the author.

Well February has seen us going from strength to strength for us in the Mightier Than the Sword UK offices and here is just a sample of what’s been going on.

FEAR

Fear front

Fear rises as courage fails.

Ribe has withstood all the attacks that the warriors of Hedeby and Schleswig can throw at them, but with the snows of winter set about the town, no help comes from the other towns of the Danes.

But the strength of King Viggo is failing. When victory seemed within his grasp, he is taken ill on the battlefield and the warriors withdraw. Cold, half-starved and deprived of their leader, the army at the gates of Ribe seems certain to retreat. Sibel, still a prisoner, discovers the secret of the arm ring that Viggo wears whilst the dangerous Queen Rena makes her move to seize full control of Hedeby.

Only Christian and Eva have yet to find their arm rings of Yngvar as the children reach the island of Sjœland. They know that one of the rings of Lolland is missing and know that in order to collect all eight; they will need to find the arm ring near Roskilde and return to fight Viggo and finally bring an end to war.

You can get your copy direct from out Etsy store for £5.99 in paperback and £1.80 in digital format.

HOME

home front

There’s no place like home.

The Children of Ribe have found all but the last arm ring of Yngvar, an arm ring that everyone but Sibel thinks King Viggo Odinsen has. Eva Axeldatter is the only one who hasn’t claimed an arm ring yet and time is running out for Wifrith.

It is time for the children to return home, to bring an end to the fighting and restore the peace between the tribes. But even with Ciara dead, there are still those who can stop the Children of Ribe as some people will stop at nothing when it comes to revenge.

Can Wifrith finally find redemption, and can Erland, Dalla, Eva, Christian, Riki, Pieter, Camila, Beatrix, Joas and Oleg defeat the darkness that threatens not just Ribe but all of the tribes of Denmark?

You can get your copy direct from out Etsy store for £5.99 in paperback and £1.80 in digital format.

BROTHERS

brother-front

SOLDIERS ARE THERE TO KILL AND BE KILLED

They see us only as numbers, as less than them, created to be Soldiers made to fight in their war. But we are more than that, we are brothers, we gave ourselves names.

Some of us will live through training, but some of us will die. Soldiers are there to be killed, whether from their tests or because we fail in our mission. Soldiers are there to kill, fighting in a war we didn’t ask for.

But even amongst brothers there are secrets. There is something that they are not telling me. My brothers tell me I’m special, but I just don’t see it. Soldiers are there to kill and be killed, so why am I so important? Brotherhood will be put to the test as we battle to be the best. I am a soldier, I was made to fight their war, I cannot lose.

You can get your copy direct from out Etsy store for £13.99 in paperback and £2.39 in digital format.

What we’ve done

We’ve delayed the release of Wyrd and When Darkness Falls until March to give a little bit of space between books coming out after having to delay Wyrd due to cover art issues.

We’ve added some new listings to the Etsy Store. There are three new gift set listings for the Children of Ribe books WAR, WIFRITH and DOUBT all of which feature a paperback copy of the book, a digital download code and a bronze or pewter arm ring of Yngvar all for just £35 each! Click the following links to find the gift sets for WAR, WIFRITH and DOUBT 

We’ve updated the internal pages for all the Children of Ribe books and Sabrina.

What we’re looking forward to in March

As  2017 rolls on and we head into March we are looking forward to the first book in the Children of Snotingas series, WYRD, and the 7th book in the Chronicles of Celadmore, When Darkness Falls. We also have the 8th book in the Chronicles of Celadmore, Torn Alliegance and Book 2 in the Mysteries of Stickleback Hollow, All Hallows Eve in Stickleback Hollow, to look forward to.

We are also looking forward to two appearances by C.S. Woolley. The first is at Lindow Primary School in Alderly Edge, Cheshire, where the local lass will be opening the new library for the school on World Book Day. The second is on 22nd March, when C.S. Woolley will be reading extracts from the Children of Ribe books to children as part of the grand opening at a new Boots Opticians at Handforth Dean, Cheshire.

And finally we’re looking forward to the official launch party for We Do Not Kill Children, more details will be released as we have them.

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For our fourth and final day of our Raven Siren extracts is the most recent of the full length stories in the Nicolette Mace universe, the Lily & Rose Saga.

Lily & Rose: an extract

Fred Barlow sighed as he hung his hat and coat behind his door and stared about the immaculate living room. He didn’t spend enough time here. He glanced at his watch, 1.30am; his days at work were getting longer.

He strode across the living room to his bedroom. It too was spotless. He sighed again as he sat upon the corner of his bed.

The bathroom door opened and a silhouetted figure stood leaning against the door frame. The silhouette had legs like a racehorse and the chemise she wore showed them off nicely.

“You’re late.” She said gliding across to him. She straddled his legs and kissed him as Fred grabbed her by the waist.

“Paperwork.” He said throwing her onto her back on the bed. “I hate it; it’s not about catching criminals any more, God it’s changed and not for the better.” He said as she rested her hands upon his shoulders.

“I wish Siren was still around. She at least kept bringing in criminals and was marginally entertaining whilst she did.” He shook his head.

“But she died a long time ago now.” She said as she kissed Fred again.

“Nic, don’t be ridiculous.” Fred smiled slightly, gazing down at his wife. She hadn’t changed in appearance in four years, only her dress sense had.

“If she hadn’t died we wouldn’t be together. I gave it all up for you and I don’t plan on going back…” She said stroking his face.

“God, I wish you would, if only to show the new mayor that at least someone still wants to get criminals off the streets.” There was defeat in his voice. He was tired now, almost too tired to fight against the corruption and restriction he faced every day.

Nicolette rolled Fred onto his side and nuzzled his neck.

“Nic please don’t do that whilst I’m ranting…” He groaned at her, there was still lots that he wanted to get off his chest without really knowing how to.

She nuzzled him more.

“What are you, some kind of cat?” He demanded trying to sound annoyed.

“Miaow.” She and Fred both laughed.

“I don’t know how you do it, but you always make me feel so much better.” He sighed as he looked at her. She was much happier now that she wasn’t a private investigator, much happier now that the two of them were together. Her abrasive and defensive nature had been replaced with joy and a gentle nature he had only hoped lay beneath it all.

“What else is a wife for?” She asked kissing him again. Fred rolled her back on to her back and whispered in her ear.

“To be my equal, to share everything with me, to show the world that I love you above all others and keep you happy. You aren’t just here to cheer me up.” He said lovingly running his fingers through her hair.

She smiled broadly and kissed his forehead.

“Now if you don’t mind, I would like to forget about work.”

More about Nicolette Mace: the Raven Siren

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Nicolette Mace: the Raven Siren is a book series by author C.S. Woolley. Written in the first person, this modern twist on the private detective pulp novel brings a refreshing take on the film noir world. Nicolette Mace is the private detective known as the Raven Siren and the eponymous heroine of the five books that come together to create the main narrative of the series. There is also a sub set of books within the Nicolette Mace: the Raven Siren series that come under the title of Filling the Afterlife from the Underworld. These books are shorter tales that are written to fill in the gaps between the stories in the main five novels and round out the universe that C.S. Woolley has created. Some of the volumes follow cases that the Raven Siren has taken on whilst others are comprised of shorter thoughts and exploits from the day-to-day life of the female private investigator.

Sign up to our mailing list to get the latest news, releases and offers from Mightier Then the Sword UK.

Once again we are back today with the Raven Siren in her continuing adventures, this time we’re taking an extract out of book 3 in the Nicolette Mace: the Raven Siren series – the Kevin Metis Saga.

Derek Long Saga: an extract

For the first time in as long as I could remember, I was in the hospital but I wasn’t a patient. Granted I had been up until about half an hour ago but I had been discharged, for the first time, and I was still there.

“His condition is stable but he is showing no response to any outside stimuli. The machines are the only things keeping him alive right now.”

“That is just so comforting.” I sneered at the man who had spoken; the brown eyed and brown haired protégé of the comatose Fred Barlow, known to most people as Rick Clegg. I however was not yet ready to address him by any form of name. I had only met him once before today and that was after Fred had just been shot by Derek Long.

“So your reputation is well earned then.” Rick replied leaning against the door frame of Fred’s room.

“And which reputation is that then?” I snapped back as I sat watching the heart monitor.

“For being a bitch.” Rick said shrugging.

I chose to ignore him and reached out to take Fred’s hand.

“So you and he were close?”

Rick seemed to have a really annoying problem of not knowing when conversation wasn’t welcome.

“Is that any of your business?”

“Probably not, so do you mind telling me what happened to result in all the blood, guts and bullets?”

“Maybe I do mind. Maybe I don’t talk to strangers because I’m not a snitch.”

“They prefer the term verbally challenged.”

“Shut the hell up you annoying excuse for human life. There is nothing you can say or do that is going to make me tell you what went on in that house and if you decide to speak to me again, don’t bother, because if you do I’ll just shoot you.”

I was in the foulest mood I’d ever been in. It didn’t take much at the moment to make me want to rip the head off someone for asking me ridiculous questions.

“You may already know this, but threatening a police officer is a punishable offence.”

I drew my revolver and aimed it at Rick’s head.

“You wouldn’t shoot me in a hospital.”

“You really don’t know me very well, do you? Whatever you have heard about me hasn’t been exaggerated. If anything some of the stories have been downplayed for the sake of believability. So step away from the door and let me get on with what I have to do.”

“And what exactly is that?” Rick asked moving to block the doorway.

“Well if you don’t move, then firstly killing you and then finding the man who has so much to pay for.” I stood and walked towards Rick, the gun still aimed at his head.

“And here was me thinking you might want some help.” Rick said raising his eyebrow and slowly smiling.

”I don’t need any help.” I wasn’t exactly in the mood to try and be civil. The only time I ever tried to be civil is when Fred made me.

“If you need it, and I’m not saying you do, then you’ll know where to come to get it. I’ll be watching over Fred whilst you are…erm…busy.” Rick said as he walked past me, ignoring my gun and sat down beside Fred.

“Let’s just make one thing perfectly clear. There aren’t many people I trust and probably the only person I do trust is lying next to you unconscious. So don’t make the mistake of thinking that I’m going to come around to you pretending to be a charming nice guy, because I won’t. I’m not like the women you’ve met before; you have to earn my trust.” I holstered my gun.

“And how do I do that?”

“You don’t ask me stupid questions or try and manipulate me.”

“Well.” Rick leant back in his chair and rested his heels on the edge of the bed. “At least you didn’t shoot me.” He pulled out a packet of cigarettes, took one and lit it. He held it out to me.

“You aren’t supposed to smoke in hospitals.” I replied coldly.

“From what I’ve heard that’s never stopped you before.” Rick shrugged.

“The rules apply to you though. They never seem to have had the nasty habit of applying to me.”

Fred being in the hospital was a slight handicap to what I had to do now. Having him watching my back whether I’d wanted him to or not had always made my life easier; though I would never admit it to his face.

I never had to worry about what was sneaking up behind me because Fred was watching out for me. So I had one extra thing to think about, I couldn’t just tear around town trying to kill Long whilst someone else mopped up behind me and made sure I didn’t get a bullet in my shoulder or worse.

I didn’t like doing things in a low key manner either. It takes longer to do and requires people staying alive long enough to tell you what you need to know without them screaming. I actually don’t mind hearing people scream, it actually has become quite common place in recent years; screaming seems to be an unfortunate side effect of shooting someone during interrogation. What I don’t like is sneaking around, sneaking around makes you no better than – than an assassin.

Assassins are not my favourite people in the world. In fact you could probably go as far to say that of all the people in the world I have ever hated, assassins would come top of that list every time.

More about Nicolette Mace: the Raven Siren

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Nicolette Mace: the Raven Siren is a book series by author C.S. Woolley. Written in the first person, this modern twist on the private detective pulp novel brings a refreshing take on the film noir world. Nicolette Mace is the private detective known as the Raven Siren and the eponymous heroine of the five books that come together to create the main narrative of the series. There is also a sub set of books within the Nicolette Mace: the Raven Siren series that come under the title of Filling the Afterlife from the Underworld. These books are shorter tales that are written to fill in the gaps between the stories in the main five novels and round out the universe that C.S. Woolley has created. Some of the volumes follow cases that the Raven Siren has taken on whilst others are comprised of shorter thoughts and exploits from the day-to-day life of the female private investigator.

Sign up to our mailing list to get the latest news, releases and offers from Mightier Then the Sword UK.

We’re staying with Nicolette Mace today for more from her adventures, but this time from the Kevin Metis Saga, book 2 in the Nicolette Mace: the Raven Siren series.

Kevin Metis Saga: an extract

It was a dark, dismal afternoon, like they all seem to be these days, when I got this call. I could hear the rain battering the windowpane of my office when the phone rang.

“Nicolette Mace, the Raven Siren.”

“He’s back and you’re marked.” The phone went dead in my hand. Anonymous calls were always trouble; laying traps for the unsuspecting Private Eye, but this time it was more confusing than anything else. It wasn’t hard to believe that someone had painted a bullseye on my back; the hard part was believing that someone was warning me.

Eight years in a business like this and you don’t make any friends, probably why most P.Is have cats. The only social life a P.I has is with the scum of the earth (their clients), who in this burg are no better than those they ask you to catch, and the local police; you can tell dinner parties are always a blast to have. Usually a shotgun blast.

I could have kept my head down and waited for the hit, it would have saved me an awful lot of trouble and a few fingers as well, but that’s the deal with retrospect.

Two minutes after the phone call I had my coat in hand, my guns in their holsters and no cat to wish me luck.

Times have changed in this business from the days of Sam Spade and Philip Marlowe. The two of them didn’t have the modern world to contend with, the escalation of violent crime, the degeneration of society, in my mind those guys had it easy.

Some things though haven’t changed.

The first thing to do was to try and sniff out a lead, general snippets of news, new guys in town, old faces resurfacing, suspicious activities anywhere in the city.

There was only one guy to go to who’d know what was happening and who would actually talk, Alfie Dennis. Alfie Dennis, still in his early twenties, was the best snitch in the city. He took from both sides and consequently knew more about the city than either side was willing to admit.

He’s a pricey resource if you knew only one way to ask and after double-crossing both sides more than once, he knew how to disappear in the blink of an eye. Luckily enough for me though, he wasn’t immune to female charms.

Alfie wasn’t an easy man to locate and the rain made me irritable when I found him in a down-town pool hall. He wasn’t an attractive man, pug faced with a spot epidemic still clinging on from his teens, though he was never short of women, mainly hookers because even though his looks made any woman want to wretch, the depth of his pockets more than made up for it.

That night he wasn’t alone either, he had two girls hanging on his arms and another two throwing him glances from the bar. When I walked through the door, all eyes turned from their games to the door and back again. That wasn’t unusual, most people in there knew who I was and I knew who they were, if I left them alone, they’d leave me alone.

Simple arrangements like these tend to make life so much simpler, and by “simpler” I mean “longer.”

It wasn’t unlike any other night walking into that hall, but the moment I walked through that door I knew something was different, something about the pool hall was bothering me and the phone call was enough to get me on my guard.

I didn’t like it.

I felt cold like I’d been dropped in a snow bank in the middle of December. It struck me as odd that Alfie hadn’t looked up as I walked in. Normally he would have been watching the door intently, just waiting for business to walk through it. I’d seen him react to the police like a snivelling worm and to the underworld agents in the same way, but he always jumped and headed for the back door if it was me he saw. He hadn’t moved.

Damn.

It was a set up; I could feel it as my flesh crawled. I thought as fast as I could, trying not to give anything away. First thing that came to mind was backing out the door I had just entered through, but it would be being watched.

I stepped away from the door and moved to the bar, the two hookers leaning against it turned and grinned maliciously at me. There was something familiar about them. I was over the counter, guns in hand, before the first shot left its chamber.

More about Nicolette Mace: the Raven Siren

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Nicolette Mace: the Raven Siren is a book series by author C.S. Woolley. Written in the first person, this modern twist on the private detective pulp novel brings a refreshing take on the film noir world. Nicolette Mace is the private detective known as the Raven Siren and the eponymous heroine of the five books that come together to create the main narrative of the series. There is also a sub set of books within the Nicolette Mace: the Raven Siren series that come under the title of Filling the Afterlife from the Underworld. These books are shorter tales that are written to fill in the gaps between the stories in the main five novels and round out the universe that C.S. Woolley has created. Some of the volumes follow cases that the Raven Siren has taken on whilst others are comprised of shorter thoughts and exploits from the day-to-day life of the female private investigator.

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