Okay! Story A Day May, which I enjoyed mightily, is over, and I’m back to business as usual.
Today, I’m announcing the release of my science fantasy novel THE WOLVES OF PORT NOVO. It’s a re-release, actually, of a tweaked and re-edited previous and out-of-print release, EEL’S REVERENCE. New cover, new title, new blurb, same story. But this is its first time in print, too.
Elderly priest of Holy Sweet Micah, Aunt Libby, leaves her parish in a huff and walks into danger. Not from the tough young mercreature who robs her, not from the pragmatic waterfront restaurateur who gives her the briefest possible shelter, but from fellow priests.
“Reaver” priests, mercenary and cynical, have driven all true priests out of Port Novo and plan to expand their power as far as possible. One old woman isn’t going to stand in their way.
Or so they think.
And now, a sample:
Reynold Pays a Call
Excerpt from THE WOLVES OF PORT NOVO
by Marian Allen
“You’re looking forward to a nice long chat with Iris?” said Blennie, serving us both from Iris’ basket. “Doesn’t Micah mind if you lie?”
“I am looking forward to it. Theofric didn’t tell Iris yesterday he expected me for lunch. If he told her so today, it’s probably because he expects I’ll drop a scrap of information afterwards that she can take to the Coalition reavers.”
“And you’re going to trade whatever Theofric tells you for whatever you can get out of her?”
“I’m going to tell you what Theofric says, and you’re going to tell me if I would be better off passing it, suppressing it, or altering it.”
“Were you really ordered to guard me, or are you in on this web-weaving that’s smothering the life out of the Eel?”
“I’m just a simple mercenary, Auntie. My orders are to guard you at all costs.”
“Then isn’t it part of your duty to advise me –”
There was a rap at the front door, the rap of someone for whom doors were opened expediently.
Blennie packed the remains of our breakfast and slid the basket into a corner. He looked through the peephole.
“Well, I’ll be a – Don’t turn your back on this one.”
He opened the door. It was that sexton. The one who had dragged me out of Muriel’s restaurant, the one Muriel had kicked, the one who had gotten Loach beaten and Muriel’s place burned to the ground. Reynold.
He came in slowly, which Blennie didn’t like: The open door constituted a point of vulnerability. Reynold knew Blennie didn’t like it, and stood for a moment in the doorway, the sun striking glints off the copper woven into his cassock. His ashen eyes took in the temple with a gaze both condescending and covetous.
Blennie closed the door as soon as he could – so soon, he brushed the hem of Reynold’s cassock with it.
I still thought the sexton looked like a skinflint’s sausage, and was almost surprised, when he prostrated himself at my feet, that his casing didn’t burst.
Buy THE WOLVES OF PORT NOVO
From Amazon in print and for Kindle, but it’ll soon percolate through to availability through Indiebound.org and Untreed Reads. It can be ordered through your friendly local independent store with the ISBN: 1942166605.
A WRITING PROMPT FROM ME TO YOU: Someone obviously untrustworthy comes to call.