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Head of Zeus
Matthew Harffy's international success spurs new three book deal with Head of Zeus
A Time for Swords
Wolf of Wessex
The Serpent Sword

Head of Zeus has signed three new historical adventures from Matthew Harffy for its Aries list. CEO and Publisher Nicolas Cheetham acquired world rights directly from the author.

Two books continue the Bernicia Chronicles series (Aries), charting the battles and triumphs of Northumbrian warrior Beobrand in the 7th Century AD. The eighth instalment, For Lord and Land, will be published in hardback, e-book and audio on the 1st July 2021 and ninth in December 2022.

The new deal also includes the second novel in Harffy’s A Time for Swords series, charting the journey of a young man from novice monk to viking-slaying warrior in the 8th Century AD. It will be published in hardback, e-book and audio on 3rd March 2022.

Simultaneously, the rights to the first three books of the Bernicia Chronicles have been sold by Head of Zeus rights director, Claire Kennedy, to Barbara Heinzius at German publisher Goldmann Verlag, an imprint of Verlagsgruppe Penguin Random House. Goldmann Verlag plans to publish The Serpent Sword, The Cross and the Curse, and Blood and Blade simultaneously in spring/summer 2022.

Matthew Harffy said, ‘Since my first novel, The Serpent Sword, it has been a pleasure to work with the amazing team at Head of Zeus. I am delighted to have signed up for three new books with the Aries imprint. At Aries, my books have found the perfect home and, with such talented professionals behind them, I cannot wait to see my series go from strength to strength in 2021 and beyond. I am also overjoyed that the first three Bernicia Chronicles have been sold to Goldmann Verlag. I am ecstatic to see my stories reach a wider audience in the hugely important German market.

Nicolas Cheetham said: ‘2020’s launch of our adventure imprint Aries was a huge success and Matthew’s blend of intricate historical research and red-blooded adventure lead the charge. The outline for his new series, A Time for Swords, is one of the most exciting and original historical adventure pitches I’ve read.


Editor for new adventure-fiction imprint Aries, Holly Domney said: ‘Matthew is a master of Dark Age fiction and truly encapsulates what it means to be an Aries author. Whether it’s with his battle-hardened hero Beobrand, or the fresh-faced novice Hunlaf, readers can rest assured that in their next Harffy read, adventure is always guaranteed.

3 Great Historical Novels
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Before the War
The Man on a Donkey
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