The Laughing Gnome Book Two – Pre-Order!

Candy Jar Books is proud to announce book two in its anniversary series of Lethbridge-Stewart novels, The Laughing Gnome: Fear of the Web.

Following on from The Laughing Gnome: Scary Monsters, book two sees the focus shift to Dame Anne Bishop (nee Travers) as she finds herself dragged back in time from 2011 to a pivotal moment in history – February 1969, and the events of the Doctor Who serial, The Web of Fear!

Fear of the Web is written by first-time novelist, Alyson Leeds, who contributed a short story to 2017’s The HAVOC Files 4.

Alyson explains being called on to contribute: “I was quite stunned to be asked if I would write a book as part of the upcoming 50th Anniversary series. It was both an exciting and fairly intimidating prospect, having never written a novel before, but I knew it was an opportunity I didn’t want to pass up. The scenario that Andy gave me was too interesting to refuse.”

Range Editor, Andy Frankham-Allen, explains: “Alyson’s short story needed very little work, and since then I’ve called upon her military knowledge for other books, so it was an easy call to invite her to join the line-up for The Laughing Gnome. For someone who’s done little professional prose writing, she turns in a very solid piece of work, which is every editor’s dream. As we are celebrating fifty years of the Brigadier, it was forgone conclusion that we would go back to the beginning, his first appearance in Doctor WhoThe Web of Fear, as written by Mervyn Haisman and Henry Lincoln. Like all the authors for this range, I gave Alyson the basic premise; put Dame Anne into the missing two weeks mentioned in The Web of Fear –  during a small briefing scene between Colonel Lethbridge-Stewart, Captain Knight and the Doctor – and finally show just what did happen when the mist started spreading across London, and add to that the idea that Dame Anne will be faced with the notion that she could, theoretically, changed things to ensure her father is never possessed by the Great Intelligence! Alyson jumped at the chance, and soon had an outline ready to go.”

Alyson talks about her approach to developing the idea: “The London Event, indeed The Web of Fear, was the making of Lethbridge-Stewart, but was never just his story. There’s an awful lot that goes on off camera there; the slow advance of the mist and Web, the escalation of the crisis, and the total evacuation of London – no mean feat! Introducing an older, experienced Anne who has known both joy and loss over the years into that scenario presented some interesting questions. After everything she’s been through with HAVOC, you would think Anne would know better than to try and change the past; but when faced with the chance to save a loved one from a truly horrible fate, who’s to say to what lengths she might go? It also presented a chance to explore a little further the relationship between the Travers family and the Silversteins. I always felt bad for Mr Silverstein, getting bumped off simply for being unlucky enough to own the Yeti, and revisiting this point in time allowed me to touch on the repercussions that his death would have on those closest to him.”

The cover is by Martin Baines, whose work was previously featured on the covers of 2016’s Times Squared, and 2017’s The Dreamer’s Lament. Martin says: “The Web of Fear is rightly regarded one of the gems of Doctor Who in the ’60s.  It’s brilliantly written and well directed and has aged very well.  When Candy Jar asked me to illustrate a cover depicting another story set during the same period I was really thrilled, especially when they asked me to show London deserted and covered in web (which was not seen in the original story but mentioned). It took a number of roughs to do justice to the idea, but when I saw some images of London in smog I knew the direction to take.”

Blurb:

Dame Anne Bishop learned a long time ago that for every fixed point in time, this a fracture point, an event that is susceptible to catastrophic changes in the timeline. And when she is catapulted back in time, she discovers first hand that February 1969 is one such point.

Colonel Lethbridge-Stewart is on manoeuvres with the Scots Guards in Libya. Only, he’s about to receive a call from his old commanding officer, Colonel Spencer Pemberton. A call that will drag him to London, and set him on a direct course for destiny! 

The London Event, the trap set for the Doctor by the Great Intelligence, changed the course of human history, and for Anne Travers it set into place a series of events that would see the death of her father barely a year later.

 Now, waking up in the body of a woman she barely knows, Dame Anne is faced with the idea that perhaps she can change things – not enough to damage the timeline, but enough to save her father.

 Future and past are set to collide, which could have irrevocable consequences for the timeline…

 NB: IF YOU HAVE A SUBSCRIPTION THE LAUGHING GNOME SERIES IS COVERED BY THIS.

The Laughing Gnome: Fear of the Web is available for pre-order now for £8.99 (+ p&p). The book is released at the end of September.

http://www.candy-jar.co.uk/books/fearoftheweb.html

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The HAVOC Files Reprinted Limited Edition

Originally published early 2016, The HAVOC Files sold out rather quickly and has since become something of a high demand product, reaching silly prices on eBay. As a result, Candy Jars Books has decided to reprint the collection for a limited run (only FIFTY copies).

Order the new copy HERE.

The first half of 1969, was a busy time for Alistair Lethbridge-Stewart. Not only did he encounter the Great Intelligence more than once, and the Dominators and Quarks, he visited an alternative reality, and encountered ghosts on Fang Rock. But that was only the start!

Did you hear about his transfer from Libya? Or the mysterious Cult of the Grinning Man? What about the alien spheres at Christmas? Then perhaps the bunker under London?

If not, then this book is for you. A collection of short stories, previously only available as digital downloads. Includes a brand new, never-before-published, story that deals with the dating issue which plagued much of Lethbridge-Stewart’s time in Doctor Who.

A collection of short stories from the classic era of Doctor Who, starring Colonel Lethbridge-Stewart, based on the characters and concepts created by
Mervyn Haisman and Henry Lincoln.
 

Includes:

The Enfolded Time’ by Andy Frankham-Allen
Ambush!’ by Andy Frankham-Allen
Legacies’ by Norma Ashley
One Cold Step’ by Andy Frankham-Allen
The Cult of the Grinning Man’ by Tom Dexter
The Dogs of War’ by Andy Frankham-Allen
The Fright Before Christmas’ by Tom Dexter

Kate Lethbridge-Stewart returns!

Candy Jar Books is very pleased to announce a new addition to the forthcoming ‘Lineage’ anthology. Fully approved by Reeltime Pictures, Kate Lethbridge-Stewart is set to reunite with her legendary father!

The story is called Of the Future and is written by range editor Andy Frankham-Allen.

“It’s a great to finally make this happen. Keith, Marc and I have been in discussion for a while now about bringing Kate into the LSverse, and what initially began as a cameo in another Lineage story, has evolved into something much bigger. Of the Future is just the start, and takes us right back to the moment that tore Kate and her father apart, setting up the situation we found them in, in Marc Platt’s Downtime. Marc, who created Kate for Downtime in 1995, with Mervyn Haisman’s approval, is very happy with the story I’ve put together, which is good enough for me.”

Lineage is due out in the summer, but can be pre-ordered now:

http://www.candy-jar.co.uk/books/lineage.html

Lineage line-up:

  • Prologue: The Soothsayer by Richard Dinnick
  • The Bone Merchants by Andrew Allen
  • As the Son Falls by Wink Taylor
  • What’s Past is Prologue by David A McIntee
  • The War Romance by Harry Draper
  • The Note by Andy Frankham-Allen
  • Inheritance by Gareth Madgwick
  • Of the Future by Andy Frankham-Allen
  • Acceptance, and then Understanding by Andy Frankham-Allen
  • The Arcade of Doom by Chris Lynch
  • Epilogue: The Soothsayer by Richard Dinnick

Series 5 Arrives on Kindle

Candy Jar Books is very pleased to announce the Kindle editions of series five. And in an amazing plot twist, The New Unusual is on Kindle before the print edition is sent out (which commences the week of May 7).

A Very Private Haunting by Sharon Bidwell.

Brigadier Lethbridge-Stewart is not a man who likes to leave things unfinished. He is, therefore, at a loss when forced into taking leave after his recent tussle with a ‘shadow creature’, a case that has yet to be fully resolved. Anne Travers is tired of the loss burning in her heart. So when Lethbridge-Stweart is called to Glencross to help the son of an old friend, she insists on going with him. In Glencross, young Tomas Campbell has gone missing, and his friends band together to uncover the dark secret at the heart of the village. Meanwhile, Arthur Penrose has returned to his ancestral home to find a haunted residence, and a doll with a message. What connects the doll to the strange sounds that scurry around Penrose Manor, why do the adults of Glencross seem so intent on keeping their children from leaving the village, and what has all this got to do with the ‘shadow creature’? It is up to Lethbridge-Stewart and Anne to find out.

A Very Private Haunting includes a special version of The Wishing Bazaar (complete with new material).

The New Unusual by Adrian Sherlock & Andy Frankham-Allen

It’s the early 1970s, a time of change, a time of turmoil, a time of surrealism, LSD and the Age of Aquarius, a time of fads, Moon landings and wars, and the young people of the world are seeking something new – and unusual! For Anne Travers, an encounter with a so-called “dream egg” is just the beginning of a long nightmare. Her scientific curiosity aroused, Anne begins to probe the secret underground scene known as “dream-ins” where students and others meet to get involved with a new craze and, perhaps, something far more alien to human experience. And for Brigadier Lethbridge-Stewart, who finds himself drawn into Anne’s investigations, this probe will lead himand the Fifth Operational Corps to the wilderness of the Australian Outback, to a little opal mining town called Coober Pedy and a search for answers.

The New Unusual includes a new version of Adrian Sherlock’s The Playing Dead (extended with new material)

The Man from Yesterday by Nick Walters

Gordon’s alive? The English Channel, May 1945. Leading his squadron of Hawker Typhoons back to base from a traumatic mission in the Baltic, Wing Commander Gordon Lethbridge-Stewart goes missing – one of the unsolved mysteries of the Second World War. Cromer, 1970. Doctor Anne Travers and Lieutenant Bill Bishop are investigating a mysterious phenomenon after hearing reports of ‘pink lightning’ seen over the Norfolk coast, while strange elfin creatures are glimpsed by the locals. And in the Red Fort, his new base of operations deep below Norwich, General James Gore is making his plans. Brigadier Alistair Lethbridge-Stewart receives a phone call that will change his life. Could it be, after all this time, that his father has come back from yesterday?

Anniversary Series Announced

Candy Jar Books is pleased to announce the forthcoming release of a new series of novels celebrating fifty years of the Brigadier!

In 1968, Doctor Who viewers were introduced to the character Alistair Lethbridge-Stewart.

Created by Mervyn Haisman and Henry Lincoln for the serial, The Web of Fear, Lethbridge-Stewart returned the following year in The Invasion, now promoted from colonel to the brigadier in command of UNIT. A legend of Doctor Who was born, and the Brigadier (as he became to be known) continued as regular fixture in Doctor Who until 1976, alongside both Jon Pertwee and Tom Baker. He would return to the series several times during the 1980s, and be mentioned often in the revived series from 2005, with a guest appearance in Doctor Who spin-off series, The Sarah Jane Adventures, and his daughter, Kate, was introduced to the series in 2011 as a semi-regular feature. Beyond the TV series, the Brigadier has enjoyed a long life in spin-off media, including novels, short stories, audio plays, comics and, of course, his own series of novels with Candy Jar since 2015.

To celebrate this milestone, Candy Jar Books is releasing a series of six titles. The first five fall under the banner of The Laughing Gnome, and follows Sir Alistair, Brigadier Bill Bishop and Dame Anne as they adventure through time, visiting the 1930s, 1960s, 1970s, 1980s, 1990s and the 2010s! These are followed by a novel that takes the readers right back to the start of the Brigadier’s journey and reveals the decision that changed his life forever!

The Laughing Gnome consists of Scary Monsters by Simon A Forward, The Fear of Web by Alyson Leeds, The Danger Men by Nick Walters, Day of the Matador by Robert Mammone, and Lucy Wilson and the Bledoe Cadets by Tim Gambrell. These are followed by On His Majesty’s National Service by David A McIntee & Dr Lynette Nusbacher.

Simon Forward, who previously wrote Blood of Atlantis, says: “To be invited back to contribute to the Brig’s fiftieth anniversary celebrations is a huge privilege. And with that privilege, like great power, comes great responsibility. We have a duty to the character and to Nick Courtney, the actor who ensured him such a long life in our imaginations. And we have the pleasure of throwing him into new situations and adventures. For my part, I’m aiming to pit him against a terror that is very much a part of his time but one that should resonate with our present. An international thriller, a haunting episode from the past, for our very British hero, teamed up with a returning character from Blood of Atlantis. Who you could call Watson to the Brigadier’s Holmes, but then he’d have to kill you.”

Alyson Leeds, penning her first novel for the series after her contribution to The HAVOC Files 4, says: “Doctor Who was never part of my childhood. Born in the late ‘80s, I did not have a Doctor of my own, and by the time of the revival I was in my late teens. Though I enjoyed the show well enough it was the expanded universe of Who, the novels and audios, that made me a fan. It was here that I first met the Brigadier, and where he instantly became a favourite character. It had always been my ambition to write, and I hoped that I might eventually get a chance to write for the world of Who. Never did I imagine that my first novel would roll both ambitions into one! That I should be writing for the Brigadier, and at so significant a point in his history, was certainly beyond my wildest dreams. Fifty years on from the Brig’s first appearance, so beautifully realised by Nicholas Courtney, many have talked about what makes the Brig such an enduring and beloved character. I find his simple honesty of spirit appeals to me most. He is not a complicated man; he does what he thinks is right, in a way that does not compromise his duty or his beliefs. In a world increasingly beset by troubles, a hero who will not hesitate to step forward and do the best he can is a perpetual breath of fresh air. My part of the story takes the Brig and Anne back to their ‘beginning’, to 1969 and the Underground. Having lived her life and come to terms with the losses she has felt along the way, Dame Anne is suddenly presented with the opportunity to change the past and save someone dear to her – her father. There will be consequences, that is undeniable, but how far would any of us go to save someone we loved?”

Nick Walters, author of Mutually Assured Domination and The Man from Yesterday, says: “Candy Jar is doing something rather special and unexpected to celebrate the fiftieth anniversary of the Brigadier. When Andy [Frankham-Allen, range editor] first told me about it a few years ago it sounded bonkers. A simple ‘X Doctors’ style reunion nostalgia trip this most certainly is not! It’s a bold, interesting and challenging idea which is going to take people by surprise. I was thrilled to be asked to write a story for this series. The idea for my story originated in a striking image which came to me last August whilst sitting in a coffee shop with Andy and all the other writers. I pitched the idea to Andy and he was on board straight away! The Danger Men is on the surface quite a straightforward, fun, spy thriller, a homage to everything from Bond to Bourne, Le Carre and Mission Impossible, and even the Milk Tray Man! There’s some serious stuff behind it, though, mainly in the backgrounds and motivation of the Bond-style villains of the story, who are led by the wonderfully-named (even though I say so myself), Dieter Allegro. Nothing is quite what you expect…”

Robert Mammone, who wrote this year’s Travers & Wells, says: “The Brigadier is what every authority figure should be – steadfast and loyal, with just a hint of a twinkle in the eye, indicating he gets the joke as well.  It is right, then, that the inheritors of that formidable legacy, Candy Jar, celebrate the character in his fiftieth anniversary year. Thanks to Candy Jar, I’ve been given the opportunity to write a story which honours the Brigadier, and celebrates the character Nicholas Courtney. Together with Anne and Bill Bishop, the Brigadier will face off against an old foe in the London of 1973. And lurking in the cracks of history, an ancient evil threatens to re-emerge into the light of day and overthrow the human race…”

Tim Gambrell, who is also writing his first novel, having contributed several short stories for the series, including The Bledoe Cadets and the Bald Man of Pengriffen, says: “Writing for an icon like the Brigadier is an honour at any time, but how much more so to be given that opportunity as part of the character’s fiftieth anniversary celebrations? He’s such a likeable, enduring and, above all else, real character. What a joy to be able to take him by the hand and immerse oneself fully in the extended world that Candy Jar has created. It lets you write big stories, with real impact, but in small worlds, and affecting real people. I get the Brig, the Bledoe Cadets and Lucy Wilson as my playmates in a story that stretches from Alistair’s childhood to his days as a grandfather.”

David A McIntee teams up with Dr Lynette Nusbacher, military historian, and says: “As I’ve said before, for me, the Brigadier’s place is all about Nick Courtney and the ideal match between character and actor, with both fitting the other so perfectly. It was said of Sean Bean than he didn’t so much play Sharpe as wear the role, and this is so true of Nick and the Brig as well. It’s such a rare thing to happen, and therefore particularly special that the resulting figure reaches fifty years or popularity, that it’s astonishing to be involved in looking back at that half century. Astonishing too, to be taking that figure to its basics, and exploring what’s really deep within this character. Every man is the sum of his memories, as the Doctor once said, but he’s also a product of the world around him, both inside his perceptions and outside. Worlds are big, bigger than you’d think, and you don’t need a TARDIS to have a range of experiences enough to fill anyone’s imagination. We may not have Nick any more, but he’s still in the Brigadier, and always will be, however big and involved the Brig’s world turns out to be.”

The Laughing Gnome blurb:

December 2011, and the Lethbridge-Stewart clan are gathering. The patriarch, Sir Alistair Lethbridge-Stewart is not well. In fact, he’s dying.

He’s determined to face his end with dignity. He has lived a long life, seen a lot of strange things, saved the world more times than he can count, but he has also made a lot of mistakes.

What if he had a chance to revisit some of those mistakes?

NB: IF YOU HAVE A SUBSCRIPTION THE ANNIVERSARY SERIES IS COVERED BY THIS.

Easter Give-away!

Happy Easter!

For the next four days, Good Friday through to Easter Monday, you can download for FREE the first chapter of the forthcoming novel, Lethbridge-Stewart: The New Unusual by Adrian Sherlock & Andy Frankham-Allen.

Eggs are at the centre of The New Unusual, and it was hoped advanced copies of the book would be available in time for Easter. Alas, it was not possible, so instead Candy Jar is offering up the first chapter as a special gift to their readers – a taste of what’s to come next Month!

The New Unusual – Egg-cerpt!

In other news, the latest novel, *The Man from Yesterday by Nick Walters, has started shipping! Keep those ears peeled for the sound of the postman!

*NB: The Man from Yesterday takes place in August 1970, while The New Unusual takes place during June 1970.

Lucy Wilson Mysteries – Officially Launched

AUTHOR WITH ALOPECIA LAUNCHES DOCTOR WHO SPIN-OFF SERIES OF BOOKS

Independent publisher Candy Jar Books is tackling prejudice against differences and promoting diversity, self-confidence and acceptance for young people, in publishing their latest sci-fi adventure series for children.

The series begins with The Lucy Wilson Mysteries: Avatars of the Intelligence. The action-packed adventure story is set in the sleepy Welsh town of Ogmore-by-Sea and features the young, sharp-as-a-tack Lucy Wilson, a London-bred pre-teen with mixed-race parentage, and her perennial side-kick Hobo, a highly intelligent boy with alopecia.

The book is written by author Sue Hampton, who was diagnosed with the condition alopecia universalis in 1981 and has since become an ambassador for the charity Alopecia UK. With Sue’s first book, The Waterhouse Girl, inspired by her own experience of learning to live with the sometimes overwhelming condition, Sue feels that it’s incredibly important that young people who feel “different” are positively represented in mainstream fiction, in ways that don’t portray them as “other”.

She says: “Writing The Waterhouse Girl changed my life, and changed the way I saw my alopecia. I began to feel braver, because my character was dealing with alopecia better than I was. Since then I’ve wanted to write stories where the characters are not defined by their condition, because that’s not what defines me. In Avatars of the Intelligence, Hobo does have alopecia, yes, but he is also loyal, brave and intelligent – all the qualities that Lucy needs in a friend.”

Through her work with Alopecia UK, Sue visits schools across the UK offering education and support to those in need, and this experience has taught her how big a difference having friends can make to somebody living with a condition like alopecia.

A representative for Alopecia UK says: ”At this time it’s very difficult to say with any certainty just how many children are affected by alopecia, however it’s likely to be thousands rather than hundreds.”

The Lucy Wilson series acts as a spin-off from Candy Jar’s existing science fiction range of Lethbridge-Stewart novels starring the character from the 1960s classic era of Doctor Who Brigadier Alistair Lethbridge-Stewart, created by Mervyn Haisman and Henry Lincoln and portrayed by Nicholas Courtney in the television series. New protagonist Lucy Wilson is the granddaughter of the Brigadier, and carries the formidable legacy of the Lethbridge-Stewart name along with her. It also features guest appearances by other characters from the Lethbridge-Stewart novels, including her family, created by Andy Frankham-Allen.

Sue says: “Lucy is dauntless, loyal and whip-smart. She’s a modern girl with strong values and opinions, which means that she feels the injustices in the world even more strongly than most and always stands up for what’s right.”

Avatars of the Intelligence deals with themes that affect many young people, such as feeling like an outsider and being bullied, in a way that Sue hopes will empower and inspire readers. Recent statistics from Childline show that as many as one in six young people experience anxiety-related problems, and in the top five concerns raised in counselling sessions over twelve months were low self esteem, feeling sad, low or lonely and bullying.

Lucy Wilson: Avatars of the Intelligence is a celebration of characters who boldly refuse to become victims of their circumstances. Despite the fact that both Hobo and Lucy are initially viewed as outsiders, they find courage and friendship in each other and, together, take on an unseen evil force tormenting their school – the Great Intelligence.

Themes of self-acceptance and confidence are further reflected in the cover artwork, created by Beano artist Steve Beckett. Shaun Russell, head of publishing at Candy Jar Books, says: “We felt that it was really important that we didn’t have Hobo hidden in any way on the cover – no hats or hoods. This is a character who is totally unashamed, and we felt it wouldn’t be right to present him otherwise. We want this to inspire other children who might feel like they’re different, if they feel lonely or left out, that it’s our differences that make us who we are.”

Candy Jar has produced a 95-page free ebook The Lucy Wilson Collection. This contains The Two Brigadiers by Jonathan Macho, Lucy Wilson by Sue Hampton, an extract of Avatars of the Intelligence by Sue Hampton, an extract of Curse of the Mirror Clowns by Chris Lynch, and a non-fiction chapter about the Brigadier written by Andy Frankham-Allen. This will sent to all Candy Jar subscribers. To receive the book you can subscribe to our newsletter or click on the link below.

The Lucy Wilson Mysteries: Avatars of the Intelligence is out now and available to purchase direct from Candy Jar Books, on Amazon and other good retailers for £7.99.

To order this books please visit: http://www.candy-jar.co.uk/books/avatarsoftheintelligence.html