Danes

Book Launch exceeded all expectations

Friday, February 17, 2012

 We had a great turn-out for the book launch in this glorious room at York's Mansion House. Nearly every seat was filled, and every copy sold. My only disappointment was that everyone was in modern dress. Having watched the beautifully-dressed re-enactors standing at their stalls or wandering around York for the Jorvik Viking Festival, I had hoped for an audience of women in apron dresses pinned with tortoise brooches, and men in tunics and cloaks trimmed with tablet-woven braid...

The Bone Thief has been printed!

Monday, January 23, 2012

 I just heard from Ellie Rankine at Ebury Press that the bound copies of The Bone Thief are back from the printers, and looking beautiful. Judge for yourselves!

I'll be reading and giving a talk for World Book Day at the Orkney Library and Archive in Kirkwall

Friday, January 6, 2012

Thursday March 1st 2012 is World Book Day, and I'll be celebrating at the Orkney Library and Archive in Kirkwall. I'll be reading from The Bone Thief and giving a short talk on the challenges of writing Viking-Age fiction.

Anglo-Saxon and Viking Leicester

Leicester (like so many Anglo-Saxon minster sites) had Roman origins. It was the seat of a bishopric from the late 7th century, until 200 years later, when the Bishop departed for a more Dane-proof new headquarters at Dorchester-on-Thames, on the Mercia/Wessex frontier.

Bardney

Bardney today is a village in Lincolnshire, 11 miles east of Lincoln.

 

The Land of the Five Boroughs

 The Five Boroughs, separate Danish jarldoms, were centred on Lincoln, Leicester, Derby, Nottingham and Stamford, all in former east Mercia. They take their name from an Old English poem preserved in the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle under the year 942, which describes their ultimate conquest by King Edmund of Wessex. It is not known whether the label of the 'Five Boroughs' was used before this date, but it is a highly convenient one for my purposes.
 

Book Launch at the Jorvik Viking Festival

Friday, December 16, 2011

 The Bone Thief will be formally launched in York on its publication day, Thursday 16th February 2012, as part of the 27th annual Jorvik Viking Festival. The venue will be the Mansion House, in St Helen's Square (very handy for Betty's Tea Rooms!), at 2pm. I'll be giving a short talk on the challenges of writing historical fiction, as well as a reading.

Silverdale Hoard

Friday, December 16, 2011

This really is the year of Viking silver hoards. After the excitement of the Barrow hoard, now there is the aptly named Silverdale hoard. A familiar-looking collection of armrings, hacksilver, ingots and coins, from circa 900 - with the surprise of a coin of Airdeconut. Is this another unknown ruler of York, to add to Siefridus and Cnut?

Amazing find in Southern Sweden

Thursday, November 10, 2011

  The long-running excavations at the high status Viking Age site of Uppåkra have turned up this bronze plaque which may depict Volundr – aka Weland Smith – a mythological figure well-known to both the Vikings and the Anglo-Saxons.

Publication date for 2012

Monday, November 14, 2011

The Bone-Thief is due out from Ebury Publishing next year. We are exploring the possibility of a book-launch in association with the Jorvik Viking Festival in York, but that’s only February, which doesn’t give us much time.