Ocean of Fear Released

Shiver me timbers, Ocean of Fear, the sixth book in the Kormak series, a swashbuckling tale of pirates, sea monsters and ancient curses, has weighed anchor and set sail for all your favourite ebook retailers.

Here’s the blurb:

The survivors of a burned out village set Kormak and a crew of bounty hunters on the trail of the pirate lord known only as the Kraken. The hunt leads from the haunted ruins of a cursed city to the buccaneer stronghold of Port Blood and reaches a bloody conclusion far beneath the waves of the ocean. For the Kraken is a sorcerer with a deadly secret and he plans to waken the most powerful demon of the ancient world.

The book is available at Amazon.com, Amazon.co.uk, Smashwords, Kobo, Apple and B&N.

If you’d like to take a short sail around the harbour before putting out to sea, you can find the first chapter here


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Comments

  1. Already got it! I shall read it in a hotel next to a large body of water, appropriately enough.

  2. Tony Graham says:

    Love the initial Grab-It-First! pricing special at Amazon US. Hope a similar program runs everywhere. Adds a sense of fun, semi-conscious urgency to the book release, taking me back to discovering a new Robert E. Howard or Doc Savage paperback in the spinning rack at the local drug store.
    You’re a big tease with that Heart of Darkness opening that steers off into its own direction soon enough.
    Thanks for the work, Bill!

    • Now that you mention it I can see the Heart of Darkness thing but at the time it never even crossed my mind. I was actually thinking of REH’s Queen of the Black Coast and Karl Edward Wagner’s Bloodstone when I wrote the first third of the book.

      • Tony Graham says:

        I can definitely see the inspirational elements from both Queen and Bloodstone, but in the initial chapters of the novel, I kept thinking about Kurtz/Kraken lying in wait at the heart of the river; mad, bad and needing to be put down. :-)

        You’ve done a fantastic job with the entire Kormak saga. It takes little thought to see the influence of Howard and Wagner, but you’ve definitely put your own stamp on the genre. Three points in particular that keep me rushing back for more:

        1. Sword & Sorcery storytelling, not world-building: Plenty of hints and references in each book serve to illustrate Kormak’s world – making it feel rich and intriguing – without sinking into a traveller’s guide/history text (the dreaded pages of fantasy exposition). Great mood & atmosphere – humanity is a late-comer to the world and those who came before were seriously weird.

        2. The interplay between Kormak and Old Ones: fantastic portrayal of non-human entities and how Kormak (who knows just enough to avoid assumptions) deals with them. Each encounter is just different enough to be fresh and lend an added perspective.

        3. Kormak himself: He isn’t Conan or Kane, Elric, Aragorn, etc. He’s an interesting, tough, cynical, yet still idealistic, hero. Yes, he’s courageous, but still knows fear and doubt – clinging to his duty as an anchor when things go seriously sideways. While loyal to his order, he’s aware it isn’t perfect. And always, there’s that reminder that someday, a certain village-slaughtering Old One has promised to return for his head. You’ve created one of the very few “paladin” characters in fantasy fiction who isn’t “awful-stupid.” Doomed, but hopeful. Seriously flawed, but steadfast.

        Okay, entirely long-winded way to say, please keep it up. I’m looking forward to more!
        In the interest of efficiency (AKA being lazy), I think I’ve just written the Amazon review for Ocean. :-)

        • Please do put this up as an Amazon review! It would be greatly appreciated :). You’ve hit the nail on the head about a lot of what I have been trying to do.

          I have fond memories writers like Robert E Howard, Karl Edward Wagner, Poul Anderson, Andre Norton and Ursula LeGuin who could conjure up entire worlds from allusive references.

          All of them had a gift for implying that the world was there and that things were going on in the background. Howard would just have Conan ride past some towers that had been burned down in border wars between two factions a century back, and from the way he phrased it, you got the picture. I’m trying to do the same thing here and hopefully I sometimes succeed.

          I also fondly remember when fantasy was a trip to somewhere else, often a quite frightening somewhere else, and usually a very strange somewhere else. For want of a better description there was a sense of wonder. I wanted to try and bring some of that to Kormak’s world as well.

          As for Kormak, he’s very much a “down these streets a man must go who is not himself mean,” sort of guy. I tend to have Philip Marlowe or Matt Scudder as much in mind as Conan when I am writing the stuff these days.

          Anyway, this was a very long winded response. Again, thanks.

  3. Tony Graham says:

    Amazon review already posted.
    You are definitely achieving your goal with this series. The combination of wonder and adventure is there – “What lies beyond that horizon?!” For me, those are key ingredients in the works of the authors you’ve listed.
    As for Kormak; I guess that explains why I tend to picture Robert Mitchum while reading. :-)

    • Thanks for putting up the review, Tony. Never thought of Robert Mitchum I must confess but he does have the right kind of presence. I tend to think Sean Connery when younger myself.

      • Tony Graham says:

        Having just watched Darby O’Gill and the Little People with my son last week, I had to concentrate for a moment, but I can easily see a 30-something Connery as Kormak. I suspect Mitchum stood up because I watched The Yakuza while reading Defiler of Tombs. I seem to remember something to do with “harnessed fury” made the connection in my head.
        Richard Armitage (before he became short & hairy) also came to mind a time or two, but he works better as Jack Brodie in my cinematic headspace.

        • The young Connery looks like he’s capable of the violence. There’s a sense of menace about him as well as intelligence and some charm. Plus he has the accent (at least as far as I am concerned!).

          The only thing I have seen Richard Armitrage in is the Hobbit so I am in no position to judge there :).

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