Recommended reading – Remains of the Dead

Here’s another book recommendation which I intended to make when it was released last year: Iain McKinnon’s REMAINS OF THE DEAD.

I love the concept of parallel sequels, and on this occasion McKinnon tells a story which starts at the same point as his previous novel DOMAIN OF THE DEAD, then shoots off in a completely different direction. And it’s all the better for it.

“The world is dead, devoured by a plague of reanimated corpses.

Cahz and his squad of veteran soldiers are tasked with flying into abandoned cities and retrieving zombies for scientific study. Deep in infected territory, hundreds of miles from their support vessel, the ever present dangers weigh heavily on Cahz’s mind as he shepherds his team to make quick, clean extractions.

Then the unbelievable happens. After years of encountering nothing but the undead, the team discovers a handful of disheveled survivors in a fortified warehouse with dwindling supplies.

Surrounded by hordes of ravenous corpses, Cahz is faced with the terrible responsibility of determining the five passengers who will escape in the helicopter. While those left stranded must continue to fight off the infected and starvation long enough to be rescued.”

Some astonishing cover art there too from the ever reliable Craig Paton. Click here for a reminder of Craig’s brilliant work from the AUTUMN website www.lastoftheliving.net.

I enjoyed this book a huge amount, and relished the glee with which McKinnon leads us and his survivors through the dead world. As I said at the time: “Believable characters trapped in a nightmare scenario—REMAINS OF THE DEAD is a breathless, high-octane zombie thriller. [McKinnon has] written another great book here…”

The Autumn artists – Craig Paton

No updates from me in quite a while… Very sorry. I’ve been working flat out to get AUTUMN: AFTERMATH delivered, and this week I’m actually sat in a caravan in Wales with the family, so my time online has been massively reduced. We’re taking a short break around the locations which originally inspired the first AUTUMN book and STRAIGHT TO YOU. I’ll share some holiday pictures when I get back.

In the meantime, I’ve been planning to put together a series of features about the artists who’ve contributed to www.lastoftheliving.net. Craig Paton, who you’ll know from his magnificent Amy Steadman artwork as well as the covers for Iain McKinnons Domain and Remains of the Dead, has put together a fascinating piece on his blog about how Amy came into being. Head over to his site here and read it.

I’ll be back up to speed shortly and will catch up on my outstanding emails etc. as soon as I’m home. Oh, and I’ll have an AUTUMN: PURIFICATION giveaway for you next week.

Steadman’s last stand

Amy Steadman, illustration by Craig Paton www.craigpaton.comThe final instalment of the late Amy Steadman’s story is now available at www.lastoftheliving.net, accompanied as usual by another beautiful illustration from Craig Paton (check out Craig’s new blog, by the way).

Amy makes an uncredited appearance in AUTUMN: PURIFICATION – finally hitting shelves in the US on 16 August. Watch out for an introduction to KILGORE – another new character – coming shortly.

An AUTUMN update and even more stories added to www.lastoftheliving.net

Two more brief stories have just been added to www.lastoftheliving.net. That brings the current total to 24 shorts, and there’s still much more to come. More about that in a minute.

Today’s first story concerns Robert Woolgrave – a young man who makes a few rash decisions in his fight to survive. Read his story first, because Robert also makes an uncredited appearance in today’s second short, the fifth part of the tale of Amy Steadman. She’s been dead for 17 days now, and as you can see from Craig Paton’s excellent illustration, she’s not looking too good! Robert’s story, by the way, is illustrated by a beautiful photograph by Antony White. You’ll see more of Antony’s pictures in the coming weeks, and later in the year I’ll be featuring interviews with all the artists involved with the project on this site.

Empty Building by Antony White (www.blackpapersky.co.uk)

I thought it would be good to give you a little more detail about what’s planned for www.lastoftheliving.net and the AUTUMN series in general…

Continue reading

My favourite corpse returns…

That headline is probably wrong on many levels, but it made you look…

Amy Steadman illustrated by Craig Paton (www.craigpaton.com)

Another part of the late Amy Steadman’s story has been added to www.lastoftheliving.net today, accompanied as ever with stunning artwork by Craig Paton.

I’m thrilled with how the www.lastoftheliving.net project is developing. Wayne Simmons was kind enough to heap a little praise on it in his recent post over at Dark Central Station (thanks, Wayne!), and there’s still a load more content to come. I have a huge amount of fiction left to add, and a lot more great artwork. There are still a few stories requiring illustrations. You’ve seen what I’m after, so please drop me a line if you’re interested in contributing.

Amy Steadman has been dead for almost five days…

Amy Steadman, illustrated by Craig PatonThis week over at www.lastoftheliving.net, another day in the life (death?) of my favourite reanimated corpse, Amy Steadman, beautifully illustrated as usual by the outrageously talented Craig Paton.

“Amy Steadman has been dead for almost five days. Her body has deteriorated to a remarkable extent. She is weakening physically, but now other, far more ominous changes are beginning to occur. Amy is becoming aware.”