The Flaming Soldier
Mark Jones was taught how to write a television script by Gerry Anderson, the legendary creator of Thunderbirds. Mark was also co-creator of the Jon Pertwee and Patrick Troughton TV project, Starwatch, and has written for the Guinness Encyclopaedia of Popular Music, as well as penning the bestselling book about the film and TV location, Aldbury – where the likes of The Dirty Dozen, The Avengers, Bridget Jones and Midsomer Murders have been filmed.
Mark said: “One of favourite TV shows was the ITV programme Shillingbury Tales, a series also filmed in Aldbury. As a location it has always been presented as an idyllic English village, but what if dark forces were at work behind the scenes? My story combines this rural peace with an underbelly of violence.”
Range Editor Andy Frankham-Allen said: “I remember reading about Starwatch in Doctor Who Magazine a few years back. So when Mark started working with Candy Jar on a new project, we grilled him about this. During these conversations he pitched an idea for a short story: Shillingbury Tales meets The Tomorrow People, with a hint of Children of the Stones. I told him to go away and write it.”
Mark continued: “I wanted the story to feel as much like the early 1970s as possible. I’m old enough to remember how grim it was. In particular I remember how frightening football violence could be. This story transfers the fears of the terraces to a rural village and throws Lethbridge-Stewart into the mix.”
United in Blood is only available to readers who order the novellas bundle (comprising The Life of Evans, The Flaming Soldier and Day of the Intelligence).
Shaun Russell, head of publishing at Candy Jar, said: “People who have ordered the bundle already will automatically get the free story, but I would advise those readers who plan to buy all three to do it as soon possible. We only have fifty bundles left and a handful of copies of the individual titles.”
The cover art is by Richard Young. He said: “I’ve really enjoyed the detailed work on the novellas, especially as the schedule has been slightly more relaxed. However, I have missed the fun of a tight schedule. And this one was certainly tight! Anyway, nothing brings out creativity better than a tight deadline. I put the artwork together in record time and I am rather pleased with it. It’s like A Clockwork Orange meets Jossey’s Giants.”
Blurb: New Year 1970 and Lethbridge-Stewart decides to visit an old school friend. In the village of Aldbury something strange is going on. An unexplained increase of violence spreads across the town, and Lethbridge-Stewart finds himself caught up in the middle of it. So much for a short New Year break!
Candy Jar is also pleased to announce that The HAVOC Files 2 & 3 have just been made available on Kindle for £4.99.
The Novellas Bundles are available directly from http://www.candy-jar.co.uk/books/thelifeofevans.html
Candy Jar Books is pleased to release the cover art for the second Lethbridge-Stewart spin-off novella, The Flaming Soldier, designed by Richard Young.
Richard says: “For this second cover I wanted to create a full colour image rather than my usual mix of colour and black and white. I had also backed myself into a corner with The Life of Evans. I found it quite difficult to fade the hand-drawn train explosion into the background, so here for the first time I decided to create the fire effects digitally, though Travers and Eileen are still pencil drawings.”
Written by Christopher Bryant, the book features a younger Travers, alongside real-life World War 2 heroine Eileen Younghusband, who passed away in September 2016. Christopher says: “In The Last Duty Eileen was only a cameo. Her inclusion came quite late to the mix, and despite her character hinting at a past fighting aliens, we didn’t fully explore this, so when the opportunity came along to delve deeper, I jumped at the chance.”
Shaun Russell, head of publishing at Candy Jar, says: “Eileen worked in the Filter Room, the top secret hub of Britain’s air defence, and tracked the first V2 rocket into the country! Before she died, I had a brief conversation with her about our Lethbridge-Stewart series. We joked about her being the first person to track an alien rocket into the country and this sparked an idea. Her sad death prompted us to include her in The Last Duty, but now we feel the time is right to discover more about Eileen’s alien fighting exploits during WW2.”
Eileen made an appearance in The Last Duty alongside her fictional cousin, Captain Younghusand. Quentin Younghusband, Eileen’s real-life nephew, is really pleased that Eileen’s legacy will live on. He says: “My aunt would have been tickled pink at the fact that she is a central character in this the latest book in the Lethbridge-Stewart series.”
Richard Young continues: “I was aware of Eileen from seeing her on the TV, but I never knew just how famous she was until I did my preliminary research. It turns out that she lived quite a life, so there was no pressure to get her portrait right… not! I’m pleased to say that the feedback I received from the family totally blew me away. I just hope that I have done her justice for all her fans.”
Eileen’s numerous television appearances included the BBC series, Britain’s Greatest Generation, Channel 4’s WW2: The Last Heroes, and the ITV Wales programme Welsh Heroes of World War Two, as well as BBC’s Breakfast, The One Show and Eggheads. Her book One Woman’s War won a People’s Book Prize. Her final book Eileen’s War was written for children and was completed and published only weeks before her death.
Bringing in a younger Edward Travers is all part of range editor Andy Frankham-Allen’s grand plan. He says: “Travers’ life between The Abominable Snowmen and The Web of Fear is still pretty much unexplored, bar a few hints here and there. It has already been established that he worked for a previous version of the Home-Army Operational Corps during World War 2, but this is our first look at what his work entailed. It’s all part of a much larger canvas, as we slowly unveil the hidden mysteries and secrets of Professor Travers’ remarkable life.”
Brigadier Lethbridge-Stewart is investigating a series of cases of spontaneous combustion. How can an inferno start inside a brick wall? Who or what are the ghost-like creatures spotted in the area around Imber base? Does it have anything to do with Eileen Younghusband, hotel proprietor, whose ordinary day is about to be interrupted by secrets from her past? Traumatic events from the Second World War impact upon the present day and a mysterious aircraft could hold the key to the identity of the flaming soldier.
The Flaming Soldier is available for pre-order now, for £12.99 (+ p&p), and will be which published in hardback, with a strict print-run of only 400 copies. You can pre-order individually or as part of the discounted novella UK bundle for only £38.40, saving £9.57, or an international bundle for only £55.59, saving £7.40. Order early to avoid disappointment.
With the launch of series ten of Doctor Who starting on Saturday, Candy Jar is making the third series of Lethbridge-Stewart (Times Squared, Blood of Atlantis, Mind of Stone) and Connecting Who: Artificial Beings available for free via Kindle across the Easter weekend.
Only available directly from Candy Jar Books at: http://www.candy-jar.co.uk/books/theflamingsoldier.html