My novel Beautiful Titan is certainly for an older age group than my previous books, and deals with love and war, truth and betrayal. At the heart is a story about a girl, Anuk, aged 19, and Felix, 20, and their complex relationship.
I’m not a big fan of putting books in a category, but if I had to, Beautiful Titan is probably in the, Young Adult (YA) 16+ church – and what a broad church it is these days.
When I started to write this novel I was initially inspired by the Arab Spring uprisings, and small acts of brave defiance in the face of dictatorships and oppressive regimes. It is the job of novelists to hold a mirror up to the real world. I hope I have done this in a very small way.
I have placed the story in an alternative history setting, which is a very liberating way of exploring other, larger, ideas and themes. My earlier Guild of Specialist trilogy were very definitely in the 1920s, so this is a bit of step change.
Beautiful Titan is set in 851AD, in an industrialized Roman Empire, and supposes that there had been an Industrial Revolution at about 200AD. This is not what the story is about. It is just the backdrop. The story is then set in a time that has similar or slightly more advanced technology to ours now, but still with a definite Roman vibe with chariot races, legions and obscure Egyptian religions.
In Beautiful Titan, the world is divided into three empires: The Roman, the Tang in the East, and the Maya Empire in Southern America and Southern Africa. In the Province of Octo (North America) a war of independence rages, as a breakaway faction of disgruntled Roman citizens fight for their freedom. This setting has been fun to establish and create, but it is only a setting for the story. It is not the story. The story is about Anuk, Felix and Quin.
I really hope you enjoy the book.