Right, firstly, an apology to all involved with this amazing book: I’ve been horribly remiss on plugging Christopher Marlowe: The Bards of Nemeton, which was published by Markosia last year and is available in print and for Kindle. Which is rather bizarre, considering that when artist Meirion Jones, urged on by Sean O’Connor (another fine artist) pushed the project under my nose at the last Kapow, I sent him to the Markosia table to show publisher Harry Markos.
Anyway, since then, Harry obviously agreed with me – that this was a good project to publish. And this epic tale of death, destruction and dirty words has certainly been getting plenty of much-deserved praise from a number of quarters, including plaudits from artist Mike (Death Sentence) Dowling who describes the graphic novel as “a brilliant concept executed with real with and style.
“It’s a fantastically sustained act of the imagination,” he says. “The art sings on every page telling a dense, audacious story: it’s a time spanning epic; a metaphysical battle with past present and future at stake. An out of nowhere explosion of great comic art.”
One man is caught in the middle … and he’s not happy about it.
That man is one of Britain’s greatest playwrights; Christopher Marlowe.
In May 1593 Marlowe is stabbed to death in mysterious circumstances, but he is snatched from the jaws of death and sent hurtling through time and space on a quest to save mankind from a band of power hungry tyrants.
“The story is an Elizabethan/science fiction mash-up – with added helpings of time travel, parapsychology and pagan mysticism,” Merion explains on the project’s official web site.
“The collective unconsciousness – mankind’s shared beliefs, fears and superstitions – exists. Not as vague, academic speculation in psychiatric textbooks but as a reality, a multi-dimensional portal linking every point in space and time. And the descendants of an ancient druidic order, the Bards of Nemeton, have learnt to enter and control it.
“Numbering artist revolutionaries, philosophers and mystics, the Bards plot to alter the fate of humanity. Drawing on the psychic energy of every person who ever lived, they bring to life the primal terrors of the deep sub-conscious, starting wars, unleashing plague on continents and causing the collapse of empires.
“Now, today, an inter-government task-force is chasing them. Operating from a high-tech HQ in the Alps, they find that the Bards killed the 16th century hell-raiser, playwright, spy and atheist, Christopher Marlowe. Marlowe holds the key to a power that can destroy the Bards.
“But the task-force’s own motives are far from noble,” Merion cautions. “Alive and on the run, Marlowe finds himself the would-be pawn of both sides. As he uncovers the dark conspiracy manipulating the actions of the two forces, he must learn to control, and then unleash, the world-changing powers at his command.”
• Christopher Marlowe: The Bards of Nemeton is available through Markosia or online at Amazon. You can also buy a specially signed copy from www.bardsofnemeton.com/buy-the-book/
• Find more exclusive Bards of Nemeton content and concept art over at www.bardsofnemeton.com
Here are some pages from the project… All art © 2014 Meirion Jones
The founder of downthetubes, which he established in 1998. John works as a comics and magazine editor, writer, and on promotional work for the Lakes International Comic Art Festival. He is currently editor of Star Trek Explorer, published by Titan – his third tour of duty on the title originally titled Star Trek Magazine.
Working in British comics publishing since the 1980s, his credits include editor of titles such as Doctor Who Magazine, Babylon 5 Magazine, and more. He also edited the comics anthology STRIP Magazine and edited several audio comics for ROK Comics. He has also edited several comic collections, including volumes of “Charley’s War” and “Dan Dare”.
He’s the writer of “Pilgrim: Secrets and Lies” for B7 Comics; “Crucible”, a creator-owned project with 2000AD artist Smuzz; and “Death Duty” and “Skow Dogs” with Dave Hailwood.