A supernatural earthquake, an imprudent teacher, a fallen angel, a twisted curse, an archangel’s reincarnation, a zombie horse. A bad start to the year… and just who is the Instrument of Peace?
DARTFORD, KENT – 9 February 2016 – Elsewhen Press, an independent UK publisher specialising in Speculative Fiction, is delighted to announce that author Rebecca Hall has signed a deal to publish her debut novel Instrument of Peace, the first book in a YA fantasy trilogy set in the central North Island of New Zealand. The story follows Mitch, who finds his friends turning against him when they fall under the influence of The Twisted Curse.
Raised in the world-leading Academy of magic rather than by his absentee parents, Mitch has come to see it as his home. He’s spent more time with his friends than his family and the opinion of his maths teacher matters far more than that of his parents. His peaceful life is shattered when a devastating earthquake strikes and almost claims his little brother’s life. But this earthquake is no natural phenomenon, it’s a result of the ongoing war between Heaven and Hell. To protect the Academy, one of the teachers makes an ill-advised contract with a fallen angel, unwittingly bringing down The Twisted Curse on staff and students.
Even as they struggle to rebuild the school, things begin to go wrong. The curse starts small, with truancy, incomplete assignments, and negligent teachers over-reacting to minor transgressions, but it isn’t long before the bad behaviour escalates to vandalism, rioting and attempted murder. As they succumb to the influence of the curse, Mitch’s friends drift away and his girlfriend cheats on him. When the first death comes, Mitch unites with the only other students who, like him, appear to be immune to the curse; together they are determined to find the cause of the problem and stop it.
Rebecca describes Instrument of Peace as a magic school setting combined with the reality of the mundane world and horror of the Dresden Files, without any characters named Harry. Her trilogy sees Mitch move from high school to university while he strives to break The Twisted Curse that threatens those around him.
According to Peter Buck, Editorial Director at Elsewhen Press, “despite Middle Earth being recently relocated from the Home Counties to New Zealand, it is still likely to be a surprising fantasy setting for many readers – especially here in the Northern hemisphere! But we think that Rebecca is poised to change that perception. This is an exciting start to a promising new trilogy for fans of YA fantasy; and, as everyone knows, YA fantasy appeals to readers of all ages. We are delighted that Rebecca chose Elsewhen Press to help her to bring her vision and talent to its well-deserved audience.”
Instrument of Peace will be published later this year by Elsewhen Press in both digital and print editions.
Notes for Editors
About Rebecca Hall
Rebecca started writing when she was supposed to be studying for her exams at Otago University but somehow passed anyway, eventually graduating with a decorative piece of paper. She moved to the UK to pursue a career in publishing and after a couple of mishaps ended up in Edinburgh and sold Instrument of Peace to Elsewhen Press, which is not quite the career she had in mind. The career she did have in mind was along more editorial lines which is why she is now a volunteer at Inspired Quill and a freelance copy-editor for everyone else. She also has a blog which she infrequently remembers to update, where those mysterious things known as short stories can be found.
Even after two years, she is baffled by the fact that the British use miles, pints and 1p coins but things like pineapple lumps, black forest chocolate and L&P have not caught on. Rebecca would like to make it very clear that she is a Kiwi and absolutely NOT an Australian (or South African) and she will do almost anything for chocolate.