Bernard Cornwell IS The Pagan Lord!

If it were a film he was about to star in, maybe.

However, it looks like the ink, the paint and the photo developing fluids are all dry on the next from the production line that is Bernard Cornwell.

It’s been listed on Amazon for order for a couple of months actually, though with just a blank shape where the cover would be. But it would seem now that someone at The Great Man™’s publishing people has got their finger out and sent a scribble on the back of an envelope over to be added to the book details.

The Pagan LordI have to admit, the cover does actually look very good.

But, as I have discovered previously, there is room for change in the covers Amazon show now and the one that ships. The Pagan Lord is due for release in the UK on 26 September. So there could be (minor, hopefully) differences between now and then.

I have all the previous books in this series, but in paperback. As I am warming more and more to buying books in hardback, I thought as this looks a good cover, I’d pre-order. The price is a little extravagant – to Denmark, is gonna cost me around £25.00 what with Danish Sales Tax at 25% and postage and all. But, hey! It’s only money, eh?

Back to the books though: Did you know they’re now called The Warrior Chronicles? The first one I thought, and after some checking, Amazon have #4, Sword Song, listed as this as well; were more the Alfred the Great series, than anything else? Just me then. But now they’re The Warrior Chronicles. Maybe more appealing to people who don’t want to think they risk learning something about a long-dead, fuddy-duddy old English King, maybe? On another site, they’re The Saxon Stories.

You’ll also have noticed the strap-line from the first books is back as well. Slightly altered. On the first few books, it was In A Clash Of Heroes, The Kingdom Is Born. Fair enough, now that time has moved on, the kingdom is a small boy in shorts going to boarding school. So the strap-line has moved on too. It kind of went awol a little, on The Burning Land, unless you count The Sunday Times Bestseller as a strap-line. Then it morphed into Amid Battle And Betrayal, The Kingdom Will Rise for Death of Kings. But now it’s a little more coherent, seen over the whole series, and is; In A Clash Of Kings A Kingdom Is Born. As Uhtred looked to be going back up north in the last one, as I remember, it could be that this is going to be about Northumberland being brought to heel. As it was.

Bernard, I like to call him Bernard, but not Bern-Ard, is also in that class of writer where his name is bigger than the book title. Clearly people are going to by anything such a writer writes because he’s written it, even if it does turn out to be his shopping list.

The Last KingdomThe Pale HorsemenThe Lords of the NorthI have the previous 6 of whatever the series is called, in paperback. I’ve shown the first three I have to the left here. Even then, even when it could have been just a trilogy, some clown saw fit to change the lettering style from #2 to #3. Don’t these people check? Look? So my beef is that in the time the series has been going, there have been (at least) two re-designs as far as I can see. I don’t have, or have seen, the hardback versions of the earlier books, so I don’t know if they’ve been any more consistent. But it is irritating, when you’ve done your very best, got in there and bought the books as soon as they’ve come out in paperback – and they foist a re-design on you. Not quite as bad as the Robert Jordan Wheel of Time abhorrence(s), but to those of us who give a shit, intensely irritating all the same.

The Last Kingdom 2The Lords of the North 2The Pale Horseman 2I’m not that huge a fan of Bernard Cornwell and I remember buying (the first in the series) The Last Kingdom because I thought the cover looked good. And hey! There are Viking ships on it, what’s NOT to like? There’s no doubt he’s a good writer, with a great feel for historical novels. The last in the Warrior Chronicles; Death of Kings, I thought was an excellent, subdued, thoughtful, reflective novel and extremely enjoyable for it. However, I tried with his Arthur trilogy and found them almost unreadable. I sometimes think he’s more machine than man, when it comes to writing – seemingly churning them out regularly, with a couple of Sharpe‘s in between for good measure. I’d like to feel there was a bit more effort, more sweat and/or tears in their writing. And some more communication from The Great Man™, to us, his faithful payers of his rent. Rather than a moan on his website that he can’t get an answer out of Facebook for something or other. That has been up on his website for so long, it’s grown hair. And in the news section, the top story is that 1356 is available for pre-order. I’ve had that here, in hardback since it was released the 27th September 2012. So much for wanting the website “to be useful, a place where you can find information about the novels.” I’d just like to feel he came down from the mountain and moved amongst us a little more often.

Maybe he will when he reads how good I think the cover for The Pagan Lord looks? It’s worth a try.

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