By Alex Scarrow:
With the 4th book in the TimeRiders series – THE ETERNAL WAR – soon to be released in the United States I thought I’d let readers into a little insight; I like to do concept art for my books before I write them. Usually I do images depicting some of the key scenes that will go into the book. This then helps me to visualize the scene before I write it. So, I figured, with the release date looming (July 1st) I thought I’d reveal a few of the pieces of concept work and talk a little about each piece and what you’re seeing.
If you’re the type that HATES SPOILERS….probably best to stop right here! (That, or just look at the pictures and don’t read the text.)
In this 4th book, our team discover that a young President Lincoln has been run over by a runaway cart in New Orleans and they’ll have to go back to prevent this happening otherwise the North will not have their wartime president many years later, resulting in the civil war taking a very different course!
But as always, things go wrong and having been saved, a curious 27 year old Lincoln follows our team back to the 21st century, only to escape the TimeRider’s Brooklyn archway and go on the run through modern day New York!
As a result of Lincoln being absent from the past, things inevitably go very differently. No President Lincoln means the civil war becomes a stale mate and America ends up becoming two nations living side by side in a permanent state of war. With the backing of Great Britain, the Southern Confederacy becomes a client state. We wind the clock forward a hundred and fifty years to the present…and the British have brought their industrial might to bear helping the south.
More than that…the British bring their military muscle to bear…
The climax of this book is a big battle that takes place in the ruins of New York; a city that represents a hundred-year-old frontline between the entrenched forces of the North and the South, and pretty much resembles Stalingrad! Maddy has managed to convince a regiment of Northern troops and a regiment of southern troops to put aside their differences and rebel against the British who have been using the extended civil war to keep America weak and thus become the dominant colonial superpower.
In this final battle we witness the cutting edge of Britain’s military technology (weaponized ‘eugenically’ engineered combat units) being deployed on the battlefield. Grotesque monsters are let loose on the rebelling troops to horrific affect. The short-lived uprising is pretty much doomed from the beginning.
The battle ends badly for Maddy and the two regiments she convinced to rise against the evil British. And as they wait to be taken away and executed, a timewave arrives on the horizon. A timewave caused by events that have been occurring elsewhere in space and time (courtesy of Liam, Bob and the young Lincoln). At the last moment…history is corrected and Maddy survives!
I’d have to say this book has been the most fun to write so far. The whole steampunk vibe was a real buzz for me to get in there, and of course….doing the concept artwork was a real blast. Hope you enjoy the book 🙂