This summer I wrote two new books, beginning a second series of St Alcuins (Hawk & Dove) novels.
The first of the two is called This Brother of Yours, and has just come out. The second one, Brother Cyril's Book, we aim to have out in February.
The new series is being published through Amazon's publishing programme, for our own little publishing imprint called Humilis Hastings, because I've made the choice to part company from traditional publishers and just publish my work simply and personally. I've linkified the pic for you, to the UK Amazon Kindle store. The paperback is here on Amazon UK and here on Amazon US.
This Brother of Yours is about pathways of healing, and is also a meditation of sorts on Jesus's story of the Prodigal Son. What is often overlooked in that story is that there are two brothers needing help, not just one. The brother who stayed faithfully at home needed to learn how to loosen up a little, as much as the prodigal needed to find his place in the family once again. It's a story about what it really means to be at home, to find your place, to belong.
In the new books I'm writing, I am trying to address some particular characteristics of the readers of my stories. Many of my readers are carers at home, or for other reasons seeking to explore ways to look after people and work on relationships. They come to St Alcuins to find encouragement, companionship and a light on the path. I hope these new books will add something helpful.
Some of my readers are neuro-divergent, or have responses shaped by experience of trauma. For the readers, any level of threat or tension is unbearable. I've deepened my already existing practice of crafting stories is which the threat and tension and effectively non-existent — they are just gentle, a safe place to go.
And so many of us now find it difficult to get through a whole book; relating online has increasingly accustomed us to much shorter blocks of text. Books have come to seem more chewy and daunting that they used to. So I'm writing now in short, divided chapters that give you a book easy to pick up and put down. You can stop and start without losing the thread because there is no plot complexity; the stories are built around encounters and conversations that accumulate to create a narrative arc.
I hope you enjoy this style of writing, but I'm telling you about it partly to warn that if you enjoy nail-biting drama then these may not be the books for you!