The Wrath of the Iutes – Map Reveal

In 10 days, “The Wrath of the Iutes” will be released on Kindle – and on paperback around the same time – so it’s time to reveal the new map for the 5th book of the Song of Britain saga.

“The Wrath…” takes place in Armorica, Isles of Scilly and what is now known as Wales. It’s in Wales that most military action happens, with armies moving from fort to fort and ships going from port to port, so the one new map drawn for this book is one of Wales – or Western Britannia Prima.

Incidentally, this is my second novel that is partly set in Wales – so did my first book, the Shadow of Black Wings, and even the map was somewhat similar, if a fantasy version. I can’t tell myself if it’s just a curious coincidence or is there something special about Wales that makes me go back to it time and time again?

“The Wrath of the Iutes” locations

It’s time for another of the “locations” post – I like to think of my books as much as a travelogue as action novels, and the travels of my characters in Book 5 take them to the very north-western edges of the Empire: from Armorica to Northern Wales.

The Wrath of the Iutes” is released on July 1st – pre-order now!

ROTOMAG – Rotomagus, Rouen

A major harbour on the River Seine, once the second most important city in Gallia Lugdunensis, now capital of Normandy.

REDONES – Condate Redonum, Roazhon, Rennes

A market town and bishopric on the frontier of Armorica, now capital of Brittany.

Worgium – Vorgium, Karaez, Carhaix

The remains of Vorgium are visible at the interpretation center
The largest Roman city in western Brittany, capital of the Osismii, then of Cornouaille. Medieval name comes from Caer Ahes – the Fortress of Ahes.

Cair Wortigern – Craig Gwrtheyrn

A large Iron Age hillfort in Carmarthenshire, on the shores of River Teifi, one of several associated with Vortigern.

The Forks – Tre’r Ceiri

An enormous, spectacular hill fort on Llyn Peninsula, used up to 5th century. The valley below, Nant Gwrtheyrn, is another place associated with Vortigern, who is said to have been buried somewhere in the area.

Hrodha’s Fort – Caer Gybi, Holyhead

A small Roman fortlet at the very end of the Mona road – the last harbour before Hibernia, the Edge of the Empire.

Silurian Isca – Isca Augusta, Caerleon

A major Legionnary fortress and a garrison guarding the main harbour of what is now Wales.

The Paperbacks :)

Me and the Dragon :) I got the proof copies of “The Rising Tide” and “The Year of the Dragon” bundle today from CreateSpace. That means the paperbacks are now available on Amazon.

I only really create these paperbacks for the fun of it, and to have tyotd2physical things as giveaways and gifts. The profits from POD are meagre: a little more than a dollar per copy, despite the price. Still, it’s nice to have a physical object to represent two and a half years of hard work. At 820 pages, the book weighs 3 pounds and is almost 2 inches thick. It’s definitely a THING. I have created a THING.

tide1The Rising Tide paperback looks nice too, of course 🙂 It all grew to a pretty substantial bookshelf, with four small books and one huge one. And now if you’ll excuse me, I’m back to writing – time to create some more THINGS 🙂

PS: The Year of the Dragon bundle contains a new map, unavailable in other editions: the Map of Gwynedd.

Map of Gwynedd
Map of Gwynedd

Standing Stones of the British Isles

We went to Salisbury Plain a few days after the Solstice, and this reminded me of the many other standing stones we’ve seen throughout the British Isles over the years.

This was our second visit to Stonehenge – even more people this time of the year, and the weather was much milder.

Further north of the Stonehenge area is the Avebury area, which has, to me, much more spectacular features than its better known neighbour, though not as iconic.
This here is the Silbury Hill – greatest man-made mound in Europe, the size and age of some of the older pyramids in Egypt. Its purpose is unknown, as there doesn’t seem to be anything inside or on top of it.

Just across the road from Silbury Hill is one of the two Kennet Long Barrows

At 100m, it is one of the largest barrows in Britain
The Avebury Circle – what’s left of it – is huge. It encompasses part of the village, including the pub, and is probably the largest in the world. This photo shows just a tiny part of it.
The locals over the ages have removed many stones for construction. Still, what’s left gives a good impression of how the entire thing must have looked like back in the day

‘The Cove’ – a triple formation of stones in the middle of what was one of the smaller concentric circles forming the Avebury complex
Way, way up north from Salisbury, on the wind-swept Orkney there is a set of megalithic monuments rivalling that of the Wiltshire plain. All through the islands the stones are scattered in lesser and greater formation – the Standing Stones of Stenness being one of the most iconic ones

The Maeshowe Barrow is built like the famous Newgrange in Ireland – its entrance pointing at the Winter Solstice sunrise
The Ring of Brodgar, not far from the Stenness Stones, this is the third largest stone circle after Avebury and Stanton Drew, and perhaps one with the best views – sweeping across the Scapa Flow

 

Dwarfie Stane of Hoy – not many tourists even notice the giant slab of rock cast on a hillside, but inside there are tomb chambers carved in solid red sandstone

We now go to Wales – Anglesey. Plenty to see there, from iron age forts to megalithic monuments.
The Bodowyr Dolmen

And the entrance to the Bryn Celli Ddu barrow mound

I have not yet been to Newgrange, so this is the best I’ve got for Ireland. The Poulnabrone Dolmen in the middle of Burren. Hard to notice among all the other naturally strewn boulders.