So it has been sometime since I updated my blog, I have been busy with Christmas and other things. However I have some exciting news about my new project, the second book in the Sons of the Wolf series, The Wolf Banner is coming!
For those that aren't familiar with my novel Sons of the Wolf, it is a historical novel set in 11thc England and you can read a brief synopsis here and an excerpt here. It follows the fortunes of an English warrior, Wulfhere and his Lord, Harold Godwinson. The theme which runs through the book is centred around a blood feud between Wulfhere and his Neighbour Helghi. Both characters have been brought to life from the Domesday Book, William the Conqueror's survey of England in 1086. They are the names of the men who owned the land around Little Horsted, near Uckfield in Sussex. In the Domesday book you can find information about their landholding and their property, but not their characters; their lives in my novel is my creation.
.The Wolf Banner continues on from where Sons of the Wolf left off. For those who have read the first novel, you will know how it ends but for those who haven't I shall not spoil it by saying anymore, however, The Wolf Banner covers more of both Wulfhere's and Harold's lives and the feud between Wulfhere and his nemesis Helghi, deepens. Helghi's threat to destroy Wulfhere takes on a more ominous t...hread and threatens to spill further into the lives of the two communities in which they live, Horstede and Gorde.
The storyline also broadens and will take the reader into Wales where we meet again the characters only touched on in the first book, Gruffydd, the Welsh King, Alfgar, his daughter Aldtih, whom he has married off to Gruffydd and Burghred, his son, desperately caught between his loyalty to his father and his English King. They flesh out the plot and will (I hope) serve to make the story more exciting.
The Wolf is an emblem of Wulfhere's ancestry when his forebears came to the land south of the Thames and created the Kingdom of the South Saxons, Sussex. The wolf was a feared animal, a representative of the carnage caused by battle-the corpse eaters, they would appear when ever doom was about to befall men. Wulfhere's ancestors wore the skins in battle, to make them appear more fearsome in battle. To the enemy, they were bringing death to them.
Wulfhere's daughter Winflaed finds and repairs an old banner that belonged to her grandfather and his fathers before him and just as Wulfhere is readying to ride off to fight the Vikings again, she presents it to him. He takes it with him, proudly displaying for all to see as he goes to into battle to defend the homeland that his forefathers, the Sea Wolves, created for him.
Wolf Banner drawing by Gayle Copper of Steelpoint Tattoos