The Hereward Saga

Hereward Book One

Six books. An unforgettable cast of characters. One epic story.

I’ve picked up a few new readers since the Dark Age saga launched, so it seemed like a good time to revisit the best-sellers that got me started. Wouldn’t want them to be forgotten.

For a long time, Hereward’s story was barely remembered in our history books. But he was there at a pivotal point in the national story, and was – I would contend – one of our most important heroes. Massively flawed, a rogue in his younger days, he grew into a towering leader who could have changed the history of England.

Book One (cover above) begins in the years leading to the invasion by William, the Conqueror, of Normandy in 1066.

The blurb:

1062, a time many fear is the End of Days. With the English King Edward heirless and ailing, across the grey seas in Normandy the brutal William the Bastard waits for the moment when he can drown England in a tide of blood.
The ravens of war are gathering. But as the king’s closest advisors scheme and squabble amongst themselves, hopes of resisting the naked ambition of the Norman duke come to rest with just one man: Hereward…
To some a brilliant warrior, to others a devil in human form, Hereward is as adept in the art of slaughter as the enemies that gather to claim England’s throne. But in his country’s hour of greatest need, he has been declared an outlaw. To stay alive – and a freeman – he must carve a bloody swathe from the frozen hills of Northumbria to Flanders’ fields and the fenlands of East Anglia.

The tale of a man whose deeds will become the stuff of legend, this is also the story of two mis-matched allies: Hereward the man of war, and Alric, a monk and a man of peace. One will risk everything to save the land he loves, the other to save his friend’s soul…

You can buy it here.

Hereward: The Devil’s Army Book Two

Book Two, The Devil’s Army, begins in 1067. Harold Godwinsson is dead and William the Bastard brutally puts down any resistance to his new rule. Meanwhile, Hereward begins to build a rebel army in a Fenlands fortress of water and wild wood. So begins the bloodiest rebellion England has ever seen.

You can buy The Devil’s Army here.

Hereward End of Days Book Three

1071. Under William’s cruel rule, villages have been razed, innocents put to the sword, and the north has been left a wasteland. Now it’s time for the Norman king to turn his attention to the east, the last stronghold of English resistance, and Hereward.

Buy Hereward End of Days here.

Hereward Wolves of New Rome Book Four

1072, and a new chapter for Hereward and his band of rebels. Cut adrift from family, friends and home, they travel to New Rome – Constantinople – to find work as mercenaries in the ferocious Varangian Guard. But this once-mighty empire is slipping into shadow. Beyond the vast walls, the endless Turkish hordes plan for an attack that could come at any moment. And within the sprawling city, rival factions threaten bloody mayhem as they scheme to seize the crown.

Buy Hereward Wolves of New Rome here.

Hereward The Immortals Book Five

1073. Hereward and his band of warriors must mount a terrifying raid into enemy land, alongside the elite and legendary band of fighters, The Immortals. But while they are gone, the bloody plots in Constantinople begin to come to a head.

Buy Hereward The Immortals here.

Hereward The Bloody Crown Book Six

The final volume, and all the twisting plot lines and betrayals that began in book one reach a shattering conclusion.

1081. And so the bloody battle for the crown of the Holy Roman Empire begins.

Within the city of Constantinople itself, three venal factions will go to any lengths – will, it seems, kill any who might stand in their way – to seize the throne.

And outside the city’s walls, twin powers threaten a siege that will crush the once-mighty empire forever. 

To the west, the voracious forces of the most feared Norman warlord are gathering. While in the east, the Turkish hordes are massing – theirs is a lust for slaughter. 

And in the midst of this maelstrom of brutality and betrayal, Hereward and his English spear-brothers prepare to make what could be their final stand . . .

You can buy Hereward The Bloody Crown here.

The Bear King – What Is It About?

Here’s the blurb for The Bear King:

Bridging the gap between ‘Game of Thrones’ and Bernard Cornwell comes the third and final chapter in James Wilde’s epic adventure of betrayal, battle and bloodshed . . .

AD 375 – The Dark Age is drawing near . . .
As Rome’s legions abandon their forts, chaos grows on the fringes of Britannia. In the far west, the shattered forces of the House of Pendragon huddle together in order to protect the royal heir – their one beacon of hope. 

For Lucanus, their great war leader, is missing, presumed dead. And the people are abandoning them. For in this time of crisis, a challenger has arisen, a False King with an army swollen by a horde of bloody-thirsty barbarians desperate for vengeance.

One slim hope remains for Lucanus’ band of warrior-allies, the Grim Wolves. Guided by the druid, Myrrdin, they go in search of a great treasure – a vessel that is supposedly a gift from the gods. With such an artefact in their possession, the people would surely return and rally to their cause? Success will mean a war unlike any other, a battle between two kings for a legacy that will echo down the centuries. And should they fail? Well, then all is lost . . . 

In The Bear King, James Wilde’s rousing reimagining of how the myth of King Arthur, Excalibur and Camelot rose out of the fragile pages of history reaches its shattering conclusion . . .

You can check it out here…

Dark Age – Out In Paperback

…soon, that is. The finished copies have just arrived from my publisher and look fantastic, I think.

You can pre-order Dark Age from your favourite bookshop or get them online here.

Here’s the blurb:

Bridging the gap between ‘Game of Thrones’ and Bernard Cornwell comes the second chapter in James Wilde’s epic adventure of betrayal, battle and bloodshed . . .

It is AD 367, and Roman Britain has fallen to the vast barbarian horde which has invaded from the north. Towns burn, the land is ravaged and the few survivors flee. The army of Rome – once the most effective fighting force in the world – has been broken, its spirit lost and its remaining troops shattered.

Yet for all the darkness, there is hope. And it rests with one man. His name is Lucanus who they call the Wolf. He is a warrior, and he wears the ancient crown of the great war leader, Pendragon, and he wields a sword bestowed upon him by the druids. With a small band of trusted followers, Lucanus ventures south to Londinium where he hopes to bring together an army and make a defiant stand against the invader.

But within the walls of that great city there are others waiting on his arrival – hidden enemies who want more than anything to possess the great secret that has been entrusted to his care. To seize it would give them power beyond imagining. To protect it will require bravery and sacrifice beyond measure. And to lose it would mean the end of everything worth fighting for. 

Before Camelot. Before Excalibur. Before all you know of King Arthur. Here is the beginning of that legend . . .

Buy Pendragon At A Knock-Down Price

If you’re thinking about sampling my new Dark Age series, now’s the time. The first book in the trilogy, Pendragon, will be available at just 99p as a Kindle Monthly Deal for a very short period. Find it here.

The second book Dark Age is out now and the big wrap-up, The Bear King, will be available in the summer.

As the blurb says…

Here is the beginning of a legend. Long before Camelot rose, a hundred years before the myth of King Arthur was half-formed, at the start of the Red Century, the world was slipping into a Dark Age…

It is AD 367. In a frozen forest beyond Hadrian’s Wall, six scouts of the Roman army are found murdered. For Lucanus, known as the Wolf and leader of elite unit called the Arcani, this chilling ritual killing is a sign of a greater threat.

But to the Wolf the far north is a foreign land, a place where daemons and witches and the old gods live on. Only when the child of a friend is snatched will he venture alone into this treacherous world – a territory ruled over by a barbarian horde – in order to bring the boy back home. What he finds there beyond the wall will echo down the years.

A secret game with hidden factions is unfolding in the shadows: cabals from the edge of Empire to the eternal city of Rome itself, from the great pagan monument of Stonehenge to the warrior kingdoms of Gaul will go to any length to find and possess what is believed to be a source of great power, signified by the mark of the Dragon. 

A soldier and a thief, a cut-throat, courtesan and a druid, even the Emperor Valentinian himself – each of these has a part to play in the beginnings of this legend…the rise of the House of Pendragon.

The Bear King Is On The March

When I start writing a book, I do a thousand words across the first hour of my working day every day, leaving me the rest of the session free to work on scripts and pitches.

I slowly ramp that rate up as I get to know the characters and themes.

I’m currently averaging about 5k a day as this book heads towards the end, which shows it’s going well. It’s The Bear King, the conclusion of my reimagining of the Arthurian myth and how it might have arisen out of history.

On course for the delivery date, which will make my editor happy.

Welcome To My Office

Finished the first draft of a movie script today. That seemed good enough a reason to celebrate. When you spend all your working day in solitary confinement hunched over a screen, trust me, you seize every moment to embrace life. Took myself down to my current favourite libation emporium, the Hagen and Hyde in Balham, South London (current, because I’ve lived all over the place, in the UK and the US, and fully expect to roll up in many more spots).

I’ve written before about how pubs are creative spaces for writers, where you can completely detach from the world-drone and disappear into your head. The dream-space.  I like it there, watching the comings and goings, overhearing snippets of conversations, seeing stories manifest before my eyes.

The beer in the photo looks like orange syrup, and that’s not far off how it appeared when it came out of the tap. I like craft beer and trying new tastes. This was a new taste. It’s a Siren Craft Brew Soundwave Sour Session IPA, with sour being the operative word. It’s made with mango and passionfruit. Not to everybody’s taste, admittedly, but I like to go on a journey.

Also did some phone business with my agent while I was there.  I take perverse pleasure in his clear irritation that I’m working while I’m kicking back in a pub, while he’s stuck in an office.

And if you fancy going on a journey too in the run up to Christmas, and you haven’t yet jumped on board, try out the new novel.