A new Sword and Sorcery Story, a new Helen Shepherd Mystery and the Pegasus Pulp Sampler

I’ve been busy lately, editing and proofreading stories, designing covers, formatting e-books and generally working through the backlog of unpublished stories resulting from the July Short Story Challenge(s). So there will be more new release announcements in the near future.

To begin with, I want to announce the first two stories from the 2020 July Short Story Challenge to be published. These are also the two longest stories to come out of the 2020 July Short Story Challenge, since both have crossed the novelette mark.

The first of these two stories is a sword and sorcery tale, though it’s not a Thurvok story, because it just didn’t fit into the Thurvok series. Because the story requires the protagonist to be a king. And Thurvok is happy being a wandering adventurer and has zero interest in being a king and Meldom, much as I like him, should never be put in charge of anything. So I came up with a new character called Kurval, a barbarian from beyond the sea who became King of Azakoria and has problems getting the people to accept him.

But King’s Justice also wouldn’t have fit tonally into the Thurvok series, because the Thurvok stories sit on the lighter end of the sword and sorcery spectrum, in spite of plenty of monsters, skeletons and resurrected corpses, and are closer to Fritz Leiber’s Fafhrd and Gray Mouser (though there are plenty of dark Leiber stories as well) than to Conan and Jirel of Joiry. “King’s Justice” is more Robert E. Howard, particularly the Kull stories and The Hour of the Dragon/Conan the Conqueror. Though the ending is happier than what Howard or Moore would have written.

Initially, King’s Justice was supposed to be a standalone, but since I like Kurval and I can tell stories with him that I cannot tell with Thurvok and his friends, you’ll see him again eventually. I’m publishing the Kurval stories under the Richard Blakemore byline, because Richard already has an established name as a sword and sorcery writer.

So follow Kurval, as he prepared to mete out…

King’s Justice
King's Justice by Richard Blakemore and Cora BuhlertIn the year of the forked serpent, Kurval came from beyond the sea, slew King Orkol and became King of Azakoria.

But Kurval’s reign is not an easy one. The people of Azakoria despise him as an uncouth barbarian, the nobles plot against him and assassination attempts are a frequent occurrence.

One day, a hooded assassin tries to stab Kurval during an audience. Kurval is shocked, when the assassin is revealed to be a young woman, Nelaira, daughter of a minor noble. But why would a girl of nineteen throw away her life on a futile assassination attempt?

As Kurval investigates Nelaira’s motives, he finds that he does not want to hang her. But he is king now and a king has to do his duty. Or does he?

This is a romantic novelette of 9000 words or approx. 30 print pages in the Kurval sword and sorcery series, but may be read as a standalone. Includes an introduction and afterword.

More information.
Length: 9000 words.
List price: 0.99 USD, EUR or GBP
Buy it at Amazon US, Amazon UK, Amazon Germany, Amazon France, Amazon Netherlands, Amazon Spain, Amazon Italy, Amazon Canada, Amazon Australia, Amazon Brazil, Amazon Japan, Amazon India, Amazon Mexico, Kobo, Barnes & Noble, Apple iBooks, Google Play, Scribd, Smashwords, Thalia, Weltbild, Hugendubel, Buecher.de, DriveThruFiction, Casa del Libro, Vivlio, 24symbols and XinXii.

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The second new story I have to announce is the latest Helen Shepherd Mystery. Even though A Grave Case is already the fourteenth Helen Shepherd Mystery I have written, it is the first to be written during the July Short Story Challenge.

The inspiration for this story was a news report about thefts and robberies on cemeteries. It’s not even the first crime story I have written that is set on a cemetery and features someone robbing elderly widows. Loot is another, though it’s much more lighthearted. Though the robber gets his comeuppance in both cases.

So follow Detective Inspector Helen Shepherd and her team, as they solve…

A Grave Case
A Grave Case by Cora BuhlertWhen the elderly widow Maureen Pettigrew is found bludgeoned to death on the grave of her late husband, the case seems clear. Maureen is the latest victim of the cemetery mugger who has been terrorising Kensal Green cemetery for several weeks now.

However, the only suspect – a young man in jeans and a battered leather jacket – is a phantom no one except the cemetery caretaker has ever seen.

Can Detective Inspector Helen Shepherd and her team find the young man in the leather jacket? And does he even exist?

This is a novelette of 7700 words or approx. 26 print pages in the Helen Shepherd Mysteries series, but may be read as a standalone.

More information.
Length: 7700 words
List price: 0.99 USD, EUR or GBP
Buy it at Amazon US, Amazon UK, Amazon Germany, Amazon France, Amazon Netherlands, Amazon Spain, Amazon Italy, Amazon Canada, Amazon Australia, Amazon Brazil, Amazon Japan, Amazon India, Amazon Mexico, Kobo, Barnes & Noble, Apple iBooks, Google Play, Scribd, Smashwords, Thalia, Weltbild, Hugendubel, Buecher.de, DriveThruFiction, Casa del Libro, Vivlio, 24symbols and XinXii.

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The final release I have to announce is not so new anymore. It’s The Pegasus Pulp Sampler, a collection which offers stories, usually the first one, from all my series. I initially intended for the sampler to be a Worldcon exclusive, but since it was doing well, I left it up. However, since the Sampler was only supposed to be available for a limited time, I never announced it here and then just forgot.

Still, if you want to try my various series (all of them), this is the cheapest and easiest way to do it.

The Pegasus Pulp Sampler
The Pegasus Pulp Sampler by Cora BuhlertGet an overview of the works of Hugo finalist Cora Buhlert and her one-woman small press Pegasus Pulp Publishing.

Space opera, military science fiction, alien invasions, hostile planets, sword and sorcery, pulp thrillers, men’s adventure, murder mysteries, cozy fantasy, historical romance – we have all that and more.

Meet Anjali and Mikhail, soldiers on opposite sides of an intergalactic war, who fall in love across enemy lines. Follow along with the rebellion against the Fifth Human Empire. Explore what happened on June 9th, 1956, the day the saucers came. Follow the people on the planet Iago Prime as they try to maintain old world traditions in their new home. Watch Alfred and Bertha, an ordinary married couple, as they live their marvellous twenty-first century life. Follow Detective Inspector Helen Shepherd of the London Metropolitan Police and her team, as they solve crimes. Watch Two-Fisted Todd Donavan, international troubleshooter, as he travels the world in the 1960s to solve other people’s problems. Meet Richard Blakemore, hardworking pulp author by day and the masked crimefighter known only as the Silencer by night, as he fights crime and corruption in Depression era New York City. Follow Thurvok the sellsword and his friends, as they seek treasures, fight monsters and help those in need. Visit Hallowind Cove, the permanently fog-shrouded seaside town, where strange things keep happening.

Enjoy twelve novellas, novelettes and short stories in five genres.

Contains the following stories:

  • Evacuation Order
  • Baptism of Fire
  • Mercy Mission
  • Acacia Crescent
  • Valentine’s Day on Iago Prime
  • The Four and a Half Minute Boiled Egg
  • The Cork and the Bottle
  • The Crawling Death
  • Countdown to Death
  • The Valley of the Man Vultures
  • The Revenant of Wrecker’s Dock
  • The Kiss of the Executioner’s Blade

List price: 2.99 USD, EUR or GBP
Buy it at Amazon US, Amazon UK, Amazon Germany, Amazon France, Amazon Netherlands, Amazon Spain, Amazon Italy, Amazon Canada, Amazon Australia, Amazon Brazil, Amazon Japan, Amazon India, Amazon Mexico, Kobo, Barnes & Noble, Apple iBooks, Google Play, Scribd, Smashwords, Thalia, Weltbild, Hugendubel, Buecher.de, DriveThruFiction, Casa del Libro, Vivlio, 24symbols and XinXii.

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As I said above, there are more new release coming. Next up, are not one, not two, but three new stories in the The Day the Saucers Came… series.

Also upcoming are new stories in the In Love and War series, more Thurvok stories and some spooky short fiction.

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