Hearts of Ice and Stone
Hearts of Ice and Stone is coming soon! This is a literary gothic fantasy (I know, something of a mouthful) with elements that a horror fan might appreciate. Set in Britannia, which is version of late 18th Century Britain, with language and cultural context that are largely to match, this is a world that has developed along somewhat different lines to our own. Notably, death is not necessarily a permanent state. A small proportion of the dead spontaneously awake to embark upon a second life, provided that their bodies are properly preserved and cared for. Over time, as bodies accumulate, the housing of the dead has become an increasingly onerous burden upon the state. A religious order, the Camaldolites, are responsible for the care of the dead, and cathedral like buildings designed for their accommodation stand across the land. However, only the wealthy can afford this care, only the wealthy may dream of a second life. As the burden of the dead grows, so the resentment of the common people grows and revolutionary aspirations simmer in Britannia.
Laura is the daughter of a noble family that has fallen on hard times, in a remote country district known as the ‘Eastings’. She finds that she has an extraordinary ability. She finds that she is able to place her hands upon the dead and tell which may be awakened and which may not. More than that, she is able to rekindle the spark of life within the former and begin the process of their awakening. But to lay hands upon the sacred dead is a crime of the utmost severity, and Laura finds that she must face the consequences.
Hearts of Ice and Stone will be published on 24th November 2022 by Provoco Publishing. Look out for more details of cover reaveal and associated publicity.