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GUEST POST & GIVEAWAY: “The Secret Casebook of Simon Feximal” by KJ Charles

Boys in our Books welcomes back blog favorite KJ Charles to discuss her new book “The Secret Casebook of Simon Feximal” 




Accidental Planning: the Secret Casebook of Simon Feximal blog tour

One of the weirder things about being an author is the amount of stuff you do without having a clue that you’re doing it. I have written throwaway details for no reason whatsoever that have later turned out to be plot crucial, without planning. I have had people talk about the way imagery and themes work in my books and thought, “…really? Did I do that?”

A thing I do without thinking is timescales. Each of the three Charm of Magpies books takes place over less than a week. Non Stop Till Tokyo is almost exactly a week. Think of England is, um, less than a week. There’s a pattern here. I’ve just finished a MS that stretches over six months and it nearly killed me. Apparently, I like my timings tight.

The Secret Casebook of Simon Feximal , my new book, spans twenty years. Oops.

It’s a different sort of book in a lot of ways. It’s a romance between Simon, a ghost-hunter, and Robert, a journalist, played out against Simon’s supernatural investigations, which means that it’s written as a series of short stories, each with its own case. They are closely linked, of course: the first five stories take place over about two months in 1894, one starting the day after the last one finished. Left to myself, I’d probably have kept writing like that and turned my short stories into an uninterrupted novel taking place over a few months. But I wasn’t left to myself, because of something I did without having a clue I was doing it.

When I wrote the first story, ‘The Caldwell Ghost’ back in summer 13, I began it with the letter that forms the blurb. It’s a note written by Robert, who has been Simon’s sidekick and chronicler for years, explaining to his long-time editor that he’s finally going to tell the truth about their relationship, and it’s signed and dated.

So here is it, Henry, a full and accurate account of how I met Simon Feximal, which I shall leave with my solicitor to pass to you after my death.

I dare say it may not be quite what you expect.

Robert Caldwell
September 1914

Britain joined the Great War (World War I to you and me) in August 1914. You can’t just write ‘after my death’ and date it ‘September 1914’ and leave it there, unless you actively want hate mail. Frankly, I’d have been tempted to send some to myself.

And there was more. I’d written a story set in 1899 (Remnant, free) with Jordan L Hawk, which included some details of what Robert and Simon had got up to in the intervening years. It had clearly been dramatic. Readers wanted to know.

So, when I sat down to write the full story, I had already pegged myself to the events of 1899 and 1914. I had to look ahead. Not just to show Simon and Robert falling in love and coming together, but to show how their love affair had developed three and five and twenty years later. That’s quite an ask for an author whose natural timespan is a week, but I’m glad I did it. I loved taking a look into the future of my ill-assorted couple, and seeing what changes for a couple of late Victorian gentlemen on the cusp of the twentieth century’s horrors. I loved finding out how a relationship that starts with frantic ghost-induced sex turns into a lifetime of caring. I’m glad I accidentally made myself write long.



I hope you enjoy the book: why not enter the Rafflecopter to win one of three free copies across the tour?




KJ Charles is a Rainbow Award-winning romance writer and freelance editor. She blogs about writing and publishing, spends too much time on Twitter, and has a Facebook group for book chat and sneak peeks. The Secret Casebook of Simon Feximal, a Victorian occult m/m romance, comes from Samhain on 16 June.

A story too secret, too terrifying—and too shockingly intimate—for Victorian eyes.

A note to the Editor

Dear Henry,

I have been Simon Feximal’s companion, assistant and chronicler for twenty years now, and during that time my Casebooks of Feximal the Ghost-Hunter have spread the reputation of this most accomplished of ghost-hunters far and wide.

You have asked me often for the tale of our first meeting, and how my association with Feximal came about. I have always declined, because it is a story too private to be truthfully recounted, and a memory too precious to be falsified. But none knows better than I that stories must be told.

So here is it, Henry, a full and accurate account of how I met Simon Feximal, which I shall leave with my solicitor to pass to you after my death.

I dare say it may not be quite what you expect.

Robert Caldwell
September 1914

Amazon UK




6 comments on “GUEST POST & GIVEAWAY: “The Secret Casebook of Simon Feximal” by KJ Charles

  1. Sarah_Madison
    June 14, 2015

    Oh man, this looks like it would be right up my alley! :-)


  2. Sarah_Madison
    June 14, 2015

    Not sure, but the link to enter the giveaway doesn’t seem to be working…


  3. Allison
    June 14, 2015

    I loved what I read so knowing I’m going to get to read more is nothing but exciting!



  4. susana
    June 14, 2015

    I’m so looking forward to this one. I’ve wanting to know Simon and Robert story since Butterflies. I really can’t wait!


  5. Pingback: The Return of Simon Feximal – with art and giveaway | KJ Charles

  6. gaycrow
    June 15, 2015

    I’m looking forward to reading this, too! (And yes, the Rafflecopter link doesn’t work for me, either.)


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This entry was posted on June 14, 2015 by in Giveaway, Guest Post and tagged , , .

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