My new book, Blood, Blades and Bacon, (book 1 in the Thorns of the Shadow series), is now available to buy. Grab a paperback or kindle version from Amazon.
KT and Kai Redthorn are both failing at life in their own ways. Childhood has ended, dreams have fallen to the wayside, and mind-numbing jobs are all that awaits. KT is driven to succeed but has still fallen short, while Kai has found that his skills are better suited to drinking and flirting. Left to dwell on the future at their aunt’s Highland lodge over the New Year, it’s set to be an uneventful family gathering. That is, until their perception of reality is shattered when an encounter with a succubus throws the twins into a secret society of monsters and magic.
Standing between them and certain death are an eccentric monster hunter called Déaþscúa and their own determination to embrace this new world. Their family is held captive by a cannibalistic witch, so the twins must fight against the clock to save them. Déaþscúa has his own battles to fight, though, and his own secrets to keep. Can the twins stay afloat through the unearthly dangers that surround them, or will Déaþscúa’s private war pull them under completely?
Thorns of the Shadow: Blood, Blades and Bacon is a fast-paced action fantasy with a quirky mix of off-the-wall humour and bloody battles that will leave you thirsty for more.
I mentioned a while ago that Thomas Livesey (better known as xthedarkone) had done the narration for The Sword Summoner‘s audiobookversion and that a video of the first chapter would be uploaded onto Youtube. I’m a little late but here it is.
Story by Matthew Roys, narration by Thomas Livesey and art by Dawn Sckufca.
Hey guys. I am really struggling to get any sales for my book so I have decided to lower the price across all mediums. Paperbacks bought through my site are now only £5 with free P&P, physical audiobooks are now £15 and ebooks on Amazon and elsewhere is down to just £1.50.
For 350 pages or 14 hours of audio content, you can’t complain at those prices. I am actually losing money on them but I need some sales. You could say that I am cutting my own throat to bring you these prices.
City walls of pale stone stood proudly on the horizon ahead. Around it rougher stone structures clung together in a hodge-podge of designs and materials like a cancer. Farmland covered the ground between the settlement and a lone hilltop many miles from it where a young man stood taking in the sight of the legendary city. Dense forests made a ring around it all.
It was early in the morning and the young man hoped to be within those walls come nightfall. He wiped an arm across his face to remove a trickle of sweat and grimaced at the smell that rose from his sleeve. He had been travelling by foot for over two weeks now without a single change of clothes. Washes had been few and far between and the summer’s heat had been like the innards of an oven for the entire time.
“If I intend to rejoin society today then I’d best make myself presentable. I smell worse than the old man’s attempt at cooking,” he said to himself.
Humming lightly, he made his way down the hill and veered toward a small stream that he had spotted from his vantage point. He found an area that was out of the way of the working men that dotted the surroundings and stripped off. The water was refreshingly cool but the man wasted no time with relaxing. He scrubbed himself clean then applied a flowery scented lotion from a bottle to himself until his entire body smelt faintly of roses.
He left the water then waited until the heat had dried him. The filthy clothes that he had worn were shoved into his pack and a fresh outfit of clean, well made wool was carefully donned. The clothes marked him above a peasant but they were still cheap and basic by any nobleman’s standard. He needed a shave but the slight beard and slightly too long brown hair did not detract from his handsomeness, simply adding a charming ruggedness to his already pleasant appearance. He would not be thrown out of any respectable establishment and that was all that the man needed.
It is a winter’s night
cold is thick in the air
and my covers do nothing to protect me
from the icy fingers that claw
across my skin.
The wind howls outside
rattling the doors
sending a ghostly draft
through the house like the malign
breath of a sleeping god.
I shiver and bury myself
deeper into the confines
of my cotton prison
seeking the warmth
that my soul has lost.
Had the world always been so cold
or has the heat faded
alongside my life
or maybe all is still warm
and I am simply dead.
This is the last poem I have from uni that I feel is remotely worth sharing. It was written during a bout of depression and could do with being more subtle I think. I wanted to capture the bleakness of how the world can feel when the darkness is washing over you mind and soul. Those times where you lay in bed on a cold night and contemplate the world.
Here is the first chapter of my newest novel. It is fully written but I have had no luck with agents. Let me know what you think and if you’d like to read more.
Scotland. A land of ancient myths where mountains vie with dark forests while snow and cold winds dominate the rugged landscape. In modern times though, the warriors have faded into the history books and the wilderness has succumb to the advances of civilisation. Where once foreigners had sought to avoid the harsh land, now they flocked there as tourists.
Deep within Abernethy Forest in the Scottish Highlands was an example of this tourist trade. It was a large wooden building known as Aife’s Lodge that had once been a private house but had since been converted into a hotel. It was the kind of place where people went to escape society completely.
The moon was high in a black veiled sky. It was just before midnight on New Year’s Eve and the few guests of Aife’s Lodge had forgone seclusion and gathered together in the main hall to celebrate. It was the biggest room in the building. A stone fireplace dominated one wall while numerous stuffed animals showcased the Scottish fauna. The dozen guests mingled awkwardly in groups of two or three, the conversations gradually becoming less passive as the alcohol flowed. Continue reading
“Magnificent,” announced the king’s assistant. “The detail, the colour, the emotion! It is simply wondrous.”
From the darkness nearby, Ellion Demerre, a scrawny, unkempt man with dark hair and dark clothes, approached the painting that had drawn the other man’s praise. It showed a woman of great beauty, naked on a backdrop of a midnight field. There wasn’t a brushstroke out of place.
“It is still not right,” sneered Demerre critically. “The symmetry is all wrong, the skin varies in shades, the hair has odd numbers of strands and freckles never match. It is infuriating.” Continue reading
Whispers on the Wind.
Rain made a rhythmic pitter-pattering against the window, filling the room with the sound of a thousand tiny drums. Flames burned softly in the fireplace, spreading warmth and light into every corner.
Thomas and his sister May were seated on a thick rug, looking up at their father who sat in a large armchair. Their mother sat beside the fire on the only other seat. Their father’s voice carried above the rain as he read from a weathered old book. The children listened, completely enraptured with his words while even their mother leaned in closer as her hands worked a sewing needle.
“…And so the valiant knight defeated the demon and soaked the trees in its blood. Its body was killed but the knight had no means to destroy its spirit. Shapeless, the demon took to wandering the forest, seeking what it had lost. The knight warned the locals not to heed any voices they may hear upon the wind and so the demon was unable to tempt any but the naughtiest of children.” Continue reading
The Electronic Dreams of Man.
A scorching wind blew through the streets. The air still crackled faintly, like far off popcorn, while everything shimmered hypnotically in the heat. A sickly smell hung over the buildings. It was quiet. Birds sang and leaves rustled, but they only highlighted the void that had filled the world.
A man shambled along the side-walk with the aid of a walking stick. He had ruffled white hair and moved with a pronounced limp. Old Grouch was what he was called by most. It had been too long since he had heard someone call him by his real name. He had no family or friends, and his bitterness left a sour impression on any who knew him.
He was a relic of the past, of a different world altogether. He had been for years. Society had always moved quicker than he had cared for. Even as a child he had hated what others loved. Popular music was noisy drivel without soul, yet everyone else ate it up ravenously. Phones removed people from communities rather than bringing them closer together. Machines cost people their jobs and made everyone lazy and incompetent. He just did not understand people’s divine fascination with technology. Continue reading
Two points of view from opposite sides of the same event.
It was raining. It lashed down in great torrents, whipping the faces of me and the men around me as we stood and waited. We were all sodden to the bone and could feel our strength seeping away with every second we stood idly by. To either side of me were lines of grim faced soldiers all awaiting our commanders signal to attack.
Then, as suddenly as it had started, the rain stopped. Through the clearing haze we got our first sight of the enemy troops. Misshaped figures faced us down a hundred yard opposite us. They looked to us like mutants, bulges and tormented postures looking dominant among their ranks. Shadowy shapes reminiscent of men hung back in the distance. The damned mist likely hid their main force, keeping us guessing at how innumerable their force truly was.
Only an old wishing well and several low growing rose bushes separated us from them and those objects would provide us with no safety from our monstrous foes. It had once been a shine to our god of luck so we were all adamant not to let anyone defile its sacred grounds. Continue reading