News reaches us via downthetubes contributor James Bacon of a new novel from 2000AD and Battle writer Gerry Finley-Day – the first of a wartime trilogy.
In The Men From Morgenland, deskbound after recovering from combat wounds and shellshock, young Lieutenant-Commander Wolfram Heller of German Military Intelligence has been viewed with disdain for his war-winning ideas bordering on the fantastic. But his plan involving ‘ethnic activists’ in a sensational strike across the Mediterranean and beyond, finally given a high command blessing, results in Heller eagerly going back into the field… only to become the subject of a worldwide manhunt.
“Resetting, alternative history, the ‘what ifs?’… all might involve armchair strategists indulging themselves like the doddery old general at the dinner table in The Four Feathers,” says Gerry himself revealing background to the new novel, “but it has its importance in highlighting The Turning Point… as when the diplomat falters, or the field-marshal makes the wrong strategic decision or the subaltern employs the wrong tactic or the common private unexpectedly excels himself. Such reappraisals sometimes set out lessons for future conflict even if never learnt, the penalties for lack of vigilance and the sheer abundance of the ‘close-run thing’. In the case of this trilogy, offering a different narrative of the later months of 1942 while telling a chase story.
“… In this first book of the trilogy, a military intelligence officer is unaware that a honeytrap in Rome has exposed his impending rendezvous at a Black Sea villa with a mysterious cabal, making him a top target for both Axis and Allied secret services. This ignites a manhunt spanning continents as featured in The Monsters of Morgenland and The Morgenland Marks.”
One of the most prolific writers in the comic’s history, Gerry Finley-Day was born in Broüghty Ferry, Scotland. He began writing action stories in the same year he gained his paratrooper’s wings.
He’s currently been on tour around the UK promoting the launch of 45 Years of 2000AD: The Best of Gerry Finley-Day, with a final appearance at Forbidden Planet, Edinburgh on Saturday 6th August
Gerry holds a special place in many 2000AD fans’ hearts as the creator of classics like Rogue Trooper, “Fiends of the Eastern Front” and “The V.C.s,” as well as “Harry 20 on the High Rock” and “Ant Wars”. A keen “ideas man”, Finley-Day’s concepts of the horrors future warfare had in store were key to both Rogue and The V.C.s’ continuing popularity, ensuring that their recent return to the Galaxy’s Greatest Comic was well-received. Finley-Day also scripted episodes of Judge Dredd and Dan Dare, and co-scripted much of “Invasion!” (and entirely scripted the prequel story, ‘Disaster 1990!’).
• Years of 2000AD: The Best of Gerry Finley-Day (Forbidden Planet Affiliate Link)
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.