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Tuesday, 26 January 2016

Author Q & A Iain King - Last Prophecy of Rome

Author: Iain King
Title: Last Prophecy of Rome
Publishers: Bookouture
Publication Date: 28th Jan 2016
 UK: Amazon US: Amazon

Welcome to Iain King who has joined us to talk about his new book Last Prophecy of Rome

What was the inspiration behind this novel? 
The tragedy of the refugee crisis and the way it’s being exploited.  It’s one of many parallels between today’s Western world and ancient Rome - and if we don’t learn from the Roman Empire’s demise, we may go the same way. 

Did you always want to be a writer? 
Yes, but I think that to be a good writer you need to have some experiences of other things, too. 

What other jobs have you had? 
I’ve negotiated with former terrorists in several places, led research on wars and conflict, and worked for the United Nations.  I’ve also been a busker.  

How did it feel when your first novel was published? 
Like I’d spent ages pushing something really heavy, and suddenly it was rolling by itself.  I was overawed by the complete strangers who wrote such wonderful reviews for ‘Secrets of the Last Nazi,’ and when it topped kindle charts in Britain over the summer, I was overjoyed. 

Have you ever had writer's block?  

If so how did you overcome it? 
If it’s short-term, coffee.  If it’s long term, take a break, rest, and immerse yourself in books, film and music. 

What motivates you to keep writing? 
The mirage of the end in sight. 

Do your characters moods ever affect your mood and vice versa? 
Absolutely.  Just as method actors try to live the experiences they portray, writers can, too.  I write night scenes in the dark and happy scenes when I’m happy.  I wrote some of the refugee scenes in ‘Last Prophecy of Rome’ when I was in Libya, just after I’d met some and heard their personal tales. 

What three pieces of advice would you give to an aspiring writer? 
1 - Imagine people’s reactions to your completed book before you start writing it.

2 – Readers are won or lost in the first few pages, and so write them last and make them fantastic.

3 - Enjoy it.

Which authors inspire you? 
Authors who have inspired me through their books: Alastair Maclean, Johnathan Freedland, and Bernard Cornwall.  Authors who inspire me because of what they’ve gone through: JK Rowling, Simon Weston, and an anonymous single mother of five who writes every morning for two hours before housework and her job. 

What are you reading at the moment? 
Does reading books for my children count?  Am I allowed to admit I’m not reading anything? 

If your book was made into a film what song would you choose for the opening credits? 
‘Mars, the Bringer of War’ by Holst.  Not quite a song, I know, but it fits. 

Who would you choose to play your favourite character in the film of your book? 
For Myles Munro - the wayward military historian who stars in both my novels so far – I’d go for Cary Grant or Richard Burton.  (What do you mean, they’re both dead…?) 

What is your next book about? 
‘Secrets of the Rogue Alchemist’ will reveal how medieval alchemists made gold – and yes, it’s a method people can still use today, and I’ve seen it done…

Thanks so much Iain and good luck with the books.

Book Angel x

About the Author

Iain King
Iain King CBE has lectured to packed university halls across Britain. He speaks about the realities of modern war and peacebuilding, the history of ideas, and philosophy.

Iain has worked in ten conflicts and warzones, including Iraq, South Sudan, and throughout the Balkans. In Afghanistan, where he came under fire several times, he served alongside both the battalion commanders who became UK's most senior casualties, and was deployed to more frontline bases in the notorious Helmand Province than any other civilian. In 2013, he became one of the youngest people to be made a Commander of the British Empire.

It was while based in Benghazi, coordinating international civilian support during part of the 2011 Libyan war, that Iain met some of the refugees who feature so prominently in his new thriller, 'Last Prophecy of Rome'. The book begins with terrorists threatening to inflict on America the fate of ancient Rome. Could Western civilisation be destroyed by barbarians a second time...? Read 'Last Prophecy of Rome' to find out - an edge-of-your-seat thriller with some unexpected warnings from history. The book will be published on 28th January, and is now available to pre-order.

Since its release in July 2015, 'Secrets of the Last Nazi' has topped Amazon kindle charts in the UK, and become the number one new release in its thriller category in the United States. The story traces an extraordinary pursuit across Europe, as Cold War rivals hunt the secrets of former SS Captain Werner Stolz. The debut novel has won effusive reviews both as a compulsive page-turner and for the amazing secret at the heart of the tale. Readers have called it 'gripping', 'spell-binding', and 'suspenseful', and several have said it was the best book they had read for years. Bloggers have called it 'unputdownable', 'fantastic', and 'mesmerising'. A well-known American reviewer described it as 'One of the most original and carefully thought out stories that have yet to appear in print,' while a Guardian columnist claims it will 'turn everybody's ideas upside down and back to front.'

Iain has also written two non-fiction books:

'How to Make Good Decisions and Be Right All the Time' is an easy-to-understand introduction to moral philosophy, which also presents a radical new theory on ethics. Used in philosophy courses, it avoids jargon and explains complicated ideas in simple language. The book invites readers to consider some practical dilemmas and long-standing problems in moral philosophy, and offers innovative solutions.

'Peace at Any Price' chronicles the international intervention in Kosovo, explaining what worked well, what didn't and why. The Economist praised it as 'refreshing, serious and well-considered... excellent,' while the Journal of Southern Europe described it as 'one of the most perceptive accounts ever written on the practical difficulties associated with peace building in the aftermath of ethnic conflict.'

Iain also edited and wrote the opening chapter of 'Making Peace in War'. This compilation of stories from civilians who served in Helmand's frontline is both moving and compelling. It tells of absurd but very human events during the war, and offers a unique and fascinating perspective on recent events in Afghanistan.

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