What a rewarding, frustrating, lovely, awful year it has been. My agent secured me a two-book deal with Thomas & Mercer, an Amazon publishing company. Hope’s Peak was selected for Kindle First, a special promotion run on Amazon you have to be very lucky to get. It’s done amazingly well, and stuck around the Top 5 in the US Kindle chart all month. It comes out proper on New Year’s Day.
I have delivered Storm’s Edge, the second book of that two-book deal, and have strong plans for more. Hopefully I get to do them.
In August I was flown to Los Angeles to film two segments for Kindle Most Wanted, to promote Hope’s Peak. That should be out very soon.
This year saw Brexit mania here in the UK, which was incredibly frustrating and infuriating, since it was a political stitch-up sold to the public by a right-wing biased Murdoch-controlled media. In the states, it saw Donald Trump claim victory over Hilary Clinton – an outcome I don’t think anyone foresaw, but in a way was inevitable. Looking at what happened here in the UK, with Brexit, it’s obvious there was some kind of sea change occurring. I wonder what this will mean going forward. What will this new year bring in terms of the political climate?
Enough of that. I read some great stuff this year. The Top Five:

Life After Life by Kate Atkinson

The Thief Of All Light by Bernard Schaffer

The Devil’s Work by Mark Edwards

The Martian by Andy Weir

Dark Matter by Blake Crouch

(Special mention to ‘Leonard’ by William Shatner, since it reduced me to tears – an honestly touching and insightful look at the mans life and legacy)

On the viewing front, I think the best film of the year is Rogue One, followed closely by Star Trek Beyond.
A movie I watched on the flight from LAX to Heathrow was 10 Cloverfield Lane, and it was great. Had some real moments of tension in there. Independence Day Resurgence was fun, if goofy. I finally got around to watching Gran Torino. I think it’s up there with Unforgiven.
Spectre was a really solid Bond film with a shit villain and unnecessary backstory. The Shallows was okay. In The Heart Of The Sea was entertaining, gruesome and raw. Mission Impossible – Rogue Nation was the best IMF film to date, in my opinion. Crimson Peak was thoroughly enjoyable, almost a gothic novel of a movie. Creepy, atmospheric. John Wick was amazing. Ricki and the Flash featured a fine turn from Meryl Streep. Meanwhile, Tom Hanks shone in Bridge Of Spies. On TV, Stranger Things was the best thing I watched all year. It was absorbing, funny, and scary as hell. I’m looking forward to a second season in 2017.

Storm’s Edge is out September 2017. I have plans for at least three sequels / additions to the series, so we’ll see what develops on that front. Until then, I have several projects going at once and, as always, it’s just a case of seeing which one comes to life first.

Happy New Year!

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