I‘ve been off the radar for the last month trying to finish my third book . The writing is almost done and looks like it’ll be in the shops around June 2017.
My publishers have already got a provisional title and cover up on Amazon (or Amazon.com). So it’ll probably look a bit like this when it hits the bookshops … . But parts of the title may change and the cover too. Welcome to the wacky world of publishing.
Research for the book has turned up some strange characters among the foreigners who fought for Ethiopia against the Italian invasion: adventurers, drunks, Nazis, fascists, Pan-African visionaries, evangelical medical men, and racists of all races came together to defend an emperor against a dictator. And it also turned up a few surprises about Haile Selassie’s international friends.
Lions and Jackals
The book is scheduled for June 2017 but keep an eye on the date. It can go backward or forwards depending on how the editing and proofing goes.
Here’s what it’s about:
In October 1935 Fascist Italy invaded independent black Ethiopia. The Italians had airplanes, high explosive, and mustard gas. The Ethiopians preferred swords and spears. Emperor Haile Selassie needed expert foreign help. What he got was a crazy gang of mercenaries who could barely shoot straight and leaned further to the right than Mussolini. Americans posing as fake French counts, Fascist Belgian soldiers, an African-American pilot duo known as the Black Eagle and the Brown Condor (they hated each other), a Cuban veteran of three failed far-right coups, an Austrian Nazi doctor, Swedish soldiers who preferred fighting communism, and an alcoholic English dropout.
The international powers backing Haile Selassie were equally disreputable. Hitler supported Selassie as part of a plot to grab back the Rhineland, and Japanese secret societies pushed a penniless Tokyo princess into marriage with an Ethiopian prince. Together, this bizarre foreign legion tried to save Ethiopia from Fascism.
More news on the book’s progress as I get it.
For more warlike weirdness, you can buy my books in paperback or ebook: