This week we’ve got a very exciting announcement for the blog – we are thrilled to say we will soon be welcoming the fantastic author LUCY COATS to the Piccadilly Press family! We will be publishing a new series called BEASTS OF OLYMPUS, kicking off with the both BEAST KEEPER and HOUND OF HADES out in January 2015, and we can’t wait! Lucy is an author we’ve admired from afar for a while, so we await her sparkly presence with baited breath… Here to introduce the books herself is the one and only Lucy Coats…
Writers are always asking questions. What if this? What if that? The ‘what if’ for my Beasts of Olympus series came from a nagging feeling that Heracles might not be a very nice person for killing all those beasts like the Nemean Lion and the Hydra, and for beating up Cerberus and the Stymphalian Birds. What happened to them afterwards? Did they go up to Olympus to be with the gods? If they did, who would look after them and where would they live? Do immortal beasts poo and if so, would the goddesses want the pong from the Stables of the Gods stinking up their nice nighties? Quite soon after that a rather special boy, (from a magical Ancient Greece where strange things still walk the earth), popped into my head. A boy who loved beasts, and could talk to them, treat their wounds, and above all, listen to their woes.
Demon (real name Pandemonius) is the son of Pan, god of wild things, and Carys, a mortal herbwoman and healer. He’s always had an affinity with animals, but on his eleventh birthday, his mysterious goat-legged dad turns up and summons him to Olympus. Zeus needs a stableboy to look after all the mythical creatures of the Gods, and Pan thinks that his son will be just perfect for the job. There’s also an added bonus—Demon will be given temporary immortality for as long as he holds the post. But Demon has only ever looked after mortal beasts—so he must endure a trial period learning to cope with the cute flying horses, the sarcastic Griffin and the deadly Giant Scorpion, as well as Doris, the many-headed Hydra and the poor skinless Nemean Lion.
First he must find out how to tame and control them, then he must learn how to care for them, and finally he must learn how to heal them when they are hurt by all the fierce warrior-heroes down on Earth – like Horrible Heracles. Demon also has more mundane tasks—like mucking out the Cattle of the Sun and milking the unicorns. The Gods have many favourite pets—Demon will come across them all in his time at the Stables—and he will also find out that the Gods and Goddesses of Olympus don’t take no for an answer when they want something done, even if it seems impossible. But Demon is a resourceful boy, and he is determined to survive the perils and challenges his new job brings.
I’m an animal-lover myself, and I’ve had a whale of a time re-inventing the Greek myths to give the beastly side of the story. Demon’s adventures (and misadventures) have been such fun to write, and I’m hugely happy they’ve found their perfect home on the lovely Piccadilly list!