Into the Map

For the last few days I have been putting together maps to help readers envisage the action of my latest novel set in the 12th century, The Drowned Court. The characters travel from Dublin, to Wales, to England, and into northern France. Poring over old maps and, as far as possible, walking the terrain myself…

2017 Book Events

I have a series of book events coming up this year, talking on and presenting my new historical fiction trilogy, Conquest, which is set in 12th century Wales, England and France. I’ve been researching early medieval toilets, nuns, clothes, castles, and some rather salacious poetry by clerics and dukes. The first book came out last…

Castle Escapes

My blogpost on Gerald FitzWalter, a Norman frontiersman in south Wales in late 11th and early 12th centuries, has just been published on the English Historical Fiction Authors blog. One of Gerald’s many colourful exploits included an escape down a latrine chute during a Welsh attack in 1109 on his castle of Cenarth Bychan. The…

Blog Tour: Conquest – Daughter of the Last King

Latest blogpost published today in the blogtour for my new novel: Portobello Books Blog Earlier stops in the blogtour last week: The Writing Desk Jorie Loves A Story The Mad Woman in the Attic And others coming up soon with Wee Reader, The Cosy Reader and more. Thanks to the bloggers for hosting me and…

You never know how the past will turn out*

It’s interesting to think about how contemporary details find their way into historical fiction. I’m not talking about errors and anachronisms, but how writers use what they see and hear around them and turn it into something else in their fiction. The locusts kept in a classroom by the creepy tutor in my new novel,…

The medieval Welsh Helen of Troy?

My new novel Conquest: Daughter of the Last King is published by Impress Books next week and is the first in a trilogy about Nest ferch Rhys – the daughter of the last independent Welsh king at the end of the 11th century. Nest is a controversial historical figure. She  makes significant appearances in medieval…

Conquest – new book cover

The cover of my new historical novel, Conquest: Daughter of the Last King. The book will be published by Impress Books on 1st October. This is the first novel in a trilogy, telling the story of Nest ferch Rhys who was the daughter of the last independent Welsh king during the struggle between Welsh and…

New historical novel – proofs arrived

Proofs for my new historical novel, Conquest: Daughter of the Last King, arrived today. Very exciting. The book will be published by Impress Books in September and is the first in a trilogy, telling the story of the 12th century Welsh princess, Nest ferch Rhys, and the struggles between the Welsh and the Normans.  …

Between historical fiction and historical research

In my historical novels I’m always imagining in the gaps and with the mysteries: what happened to the 10th century Viscountess Emma of Limoges during the three years she was held for ransom by Vikings before her husband paid up? (The Viking Hostage)   why did the 11th century Count Ramon Berenger of Barcelona kidnap…