Introducing James Hartley and his Shakespeare’s Moon Series

May 6th, 2017 | By | Category: Books, Children's Fiction, Lodestone Books, Our Street Books

“What’s done cannot be undone.” – William Shakespear, Macbeth

Hi, my name´s James and I´m the author of a NA/YA novel called The Invisible Hand published by Lodestone Books james

The book is about children at a boarding school who get involved in the plot of Shakespeare´s Macbeth. It forms the first part of a series called Shakespeare´s Moon. Each book in the series involves a different Shakespeare play.

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In his heart Sam felt strangely safe. His spirit, too, was enveloped in a feeling of invincibility and he thought: I don´t know why I´m here but if I keep coming back there must be some reason, some reason I don´t know about. I´m only dreaming. I´m only dreaming. And so he decided to press on, crouching to haul up the body of the drowned man and trudging back up to the dry sand with it draped around his neck like a macabre scarf.

Night was falling now, Sam was sure of that, and cold, changeable winds were beginning to rake the beach. Their snouts and tails cuffed up the loosest sand and whipped it fiercely about. Not being able to see the cliffs anymore, let alone a way up them, Sam thought he saw twinkling lights further down the coast and pressed on despite the conditions. A few minutes later he saw the golden glow of a house which seemed to be cut into the rock and forced himself up the slimy stairs to kick at the wooden door.

Nobody answered.

The wind was almost as loud as the sea now, a raging sea which Sam could hear at his back. Before him, the yellow windows of the house peered out from the steep, dark cliff-face. In desperation he kicked out at the wooden front door again, as hard as his numb feet would allow.

Turning, exasperated, ready to throw the body off his shoulders and into the sea, Sam saw the most beautiful face he´d ever seen in his life staring back at him from behind a thick glass pane at one of the golden windows. It was a girl, about his age, modestly dressed in a shawl which she lifted to cover her nose and mouth as he watched. Her hair, where he could see it, was a rich, chocolate brown. Her eyes were amber. Her skin was pale and somehow infinite.

“Help me,” Sam shouted. He turned on the step so the girl might see the face of the man he was carrying.

When he looked back the girl dropped the shawl and mouthed, “Leave him there and go. I beg ye, leave him there and go.”

Sam looked into the girl´s eyes and could see everything. She was afraid. Someone was in the house with her and she couldn´t open the door. They thought he was a wrecker. They were scared of enemy soldiers. They knew the dead man but they wanted nothing to do with Sam. Something in the girl´s eyes, something about her, a strong feeling he couldn’t well describe, but which was stronger than the wind and the waves and danger, made him to do as she said. He left the body on the upper step and, after one final backwards glance, stepped down to the beach and turned into the wind.


The Invisible Hand

The Invisible Hand – Shakespeare’s Moon, Act I

The Invisible Hand is about a boy, Sam, who has just started life at a boarding school who finds himself able to travel back in time to medieval Scotland. There he meets a girl, Leana, who can also travel to the future, and the two of them become wrapped up in events in Macbeth, the Shakespeare play, and in the daily life of the school.

The book is aimed at students who may be studying Macbeth at GCSE or A level, or simply those who like a good, if slightly scary, story.

The book forms part of a series called Shakespeare´s Moon and each book is set in the same boarding school but focusses on a different Shakespeare play.

The school itself, and its teachers and some of the legends about it, are all closely associated with the world and history of literature, although no knowledge of this or of Macbeth or Shakespeare is necessary for enjoying the book.

Get it from Amazon UK here, from Amazon US here. It´s available in all good bookstores all over the world (like Shakespeare & Co in Paris), as well as the National and The Globe Theatres in London. You can read a nice review from Australia here.

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