Welcome to the New Year and welcome back!
It has been a quiet few years for the press. Last year and in 2021 we published Tamlin by Aven Wildsmith, did a lot of reading, secured a distributor (Turnaround!), joined Publishing Scotland, attended events, fairs and comicons.
In 2023, we have an exciting line-up of novellas for you, all three are very different in subject matter but have a common thread of fantastical elements, queerness and suspense.
We will need your help to bring these books to life – so keep an eye out for our Kickstarter launch in February 2023, where you'll be able to pre-order these books and support our future as a micro press.
The False Sister by Briar Ripley
Folklore mythology meets dark suburbia. Welcome to the Dollhouse dir. Todd Solondz meets The Blair Witch Project and The Stepford Wives by Ira Levin. Occupying the murky grey space between YA fiction and adult fiction focused on child characters.
It’s 1994, and Jesse Greer’s troubled older sister, Crys, has run away from home. Shy, socially awkward Jesse assumes that she has returned to her old haunts in the big city— until he discovers Crys’ remains in the woods behind his family’s house. Traumatized, Jesse runs to his parents for help, only to find that Crys has returned home, alive.
Briar Ripley Page is the author of two books for adults: Corrupted Vessels (about a tiny cult) and Body After Body (erotic dystopian horror). Briar’s short story “A Chrysalis For the Emperor” is forthcoming in Changelings, a YA anthology of fiction about trans autistic teenagers, and is the title piece of their upcoming short fiction collection from swallow::tale press. Briar’s work has also appeared in various other anthologies and literary magazines. He was nominated for a Pushcart Prize and made the Brave New Weird award shortlist in 2022.
Originally from Pennsylvania, USA, Briar now lives in London with their spouse, flatmates, and two black-and-white cats. Briar’s website is briarripleypage.xyz.
You can also find him on Twitter, Tumblr and Instagram.
Andrion by Alex Penland
Feminist steampunk tale of ancient Athens. Life and justice politics in a world extrapolated from history.
The Song of Achilles by Madeline Miller meets His Dark Materials by Phillip Pullman, with all the focus on family dysfunction of Hades from Supergiant Games and just as much queer content.
When 16-year-old Kallis goes to see Aristophanes' latest play, she's inspired to sneak into the Assembly and try to make her name as an orator. After all, she grew up at her father's knee. Even though the men around him treat her like a wild animal, Niko's always been proud of her outspoken intelligence. Kallis has no reason to suspect he'll be anything but supportive.
Alex Penland is a former museum kid. They spent their childhood running rampant through the Smithsonian Institution, which kicked off an early career as a child adventurer. Alex has worked in the field with NASA scientists, linguists and acclaimed photographers.
A Pushcart-nominated author, Alex currently lives in Scotland while studying for a PhD in Creative Writing at the University of Edinburgh. Prior adventures include founding a writing organization in Iowa, volunteering at the National Zoo in DC and various enterprises in the field of education. You can read more of their work in publications such as Interzone and Metaphorosis.
You can find more of Alex on Twitter, Instagram and their website.
The Child of Hameln by Max Turner
A supernatural mystery and light horror, this dark fable features a town cloaked in darkness and torn by grief, a debt unpaid and a wrong left unrighted. Set in small town USA of the 1980s, The Child of Hameln is a queer, adult retelling of the Pied Piper of Hameln.
The Pied Piper of Hameln meets Stranger Things, True Blood and Hannibal (TV).
Bobby Taylor was the only child left behind twenty years earlier when a supernatural power kidnapped all the children of Elk Pass. Now a grown man and town deputy, Bobby discovers a horrible cover-up in this small town steeped in evil. The mystery unfolds as a snow storm blows in, threatening to isolate the town, and Bobby comes face to face with the monster who had left him behind when all the other children were taken.
Max Turner is a gay transgender man based in the United Kingdom. He is also a parent, nerd, intersectional feminist and coffee addict. Max writes speculative and science fiction, fantasy, furry fiction, many sub-genres of horror, and LGBTQ+ romance and erotica. More often than not, he writes combinations thereof.
Max has written several queer novellas and his short stories have been published both online and in print publications, including anthologies from Carnation Books, Dead Fish Books, Bell Press, Cloaked Press, Sliced Up Press, Cleis Press, Tenebrous Press, Heads Dance Press, All Worlds Wayfarer and more.
Max is also the publisher of A Coup of Owls quarterly online and print anthologies. You can find him on Twitter, Instagram, Tumblr and his own website.