- Promo: Zombies of Byzantium
- Series: –
- Author: Sean Munger
- No of Pages: 240
- Expected publication: February 4th 2013 by Samhain Publishing
The dead have been alive for centuries!
It’s the 8th century A.D., and the Byzantine Empire has got problems. A ruthless schemer has just overthrown the emperor and taken the crown for himself. The Saracen army is attacking Constantinople. Only one thing could make these problems look petty by comparison: an invasion of undead, flesh-eating zombies.
One young monk has witnessed the horror of the zombies and lived to tell the tale. When the new emperor hears of the danger, he hatches a wild plan. He puts the young monk in charge of creating an army of zombies to defeat the invaders. But it’s not that easy to control the living dead…
Excerpt of Zombies of Byzantium
By Sean Munger
© 2012/13 by Sean Munger
“Swords!” Theophilus shouted. The guards that had been overwhelmed by the ghouls had left several weapons littering the floor of the Praetorium courtyard. Within seconds the old monk and I had a sword in each hand, facing down the mass of writhing, blood-streaked demons that ambled toward us.
There was no question that the ghouls we dispatched in the next blood-soaked minutes were from the Praetorium dungeons. By this point Theophilus and I were old hands at destroying ghouls. We slashed, spun, sliced heads and limbs, and soon were as soaked with gore and entrails as the ghouls themselves. Inside of five minutes the Praetorium courtyard was a charnel-house of slaughter, and I dreaded once more the return of the pestilence that had bedeviled us since Theophilus and I first walked into Domelium several months before.
“We must find out what happened,” said Theophilus, planting a foot on the chest of a slain ghoul in order to withdraw his sword from its head.
“It isn’t obvious?” I replied. “The ghouls got loose somehow and overwhelmed the guards.” I saw movement in the darkness behind Theophilus. “Behind you!” I cried.
He spun, chopped the ghoul in half, and pierced its head. We could hear moaning and shambling coming from the main doorway of the Praetorium, whose heavy wooden door was ajar; the spikes on it were smeared with blood and bits of flesh. Clearly there were more ghouls inside the prison. I surmised they were finished devouring all the guards and now on the hunt for fresh victims.
“I fear for Michael Camytzes,” said Theophilus. “Shouldn’t we try to ascertain whether he managed to escape?”
“I hate to say it, but I think he’s in there.” I motioned to the doorway. “And if he’s in there, he obviously didn’t make it.”
“We should make sure. If he’s still alive we must rescue him. His skills will be desperately needed to contain the outbreak of ghouls that will surely result from this.”
Two ghouls staggered from the doorway. Theophilus cut one down, and I the other. One of them made a disturbing gurgling sound as my sword cleaved his throat. We backed away, swords at the ready.
“If Camytzes is alive,” I said, “surely he’s been bitten and will himself transform in a matter of hours.” The groaning sounded from within the Praetorium again. “I wonder how many are left inside there.”
“We have to smite them as they come out of the doorway,” said Theophilus. “That way they can approach from only one direction.”
“No. Picking them off one by one or two by two, we’ll be here all night. Eventually we’ll get tired and they’ll overwhelm us.” A ghoul hand shot out of the doorway; I lopped it off. The ghoul it belonged to fell to the stones and a sweep of one of Theophilus’s swords decapitated it.
“We have to get out of here, Theophilus,” I said. “We must get to the palace and warn the Emperor.”
“Surely the alarm has already reached him, or will shortly.”
I looked up and saw more fire flickering on the walls. “With the siege going on, the whole city’s going to be in chaos in a matter of hours, perhaps minutes. We need heavy troops to prevent the ghouls from fanning out everywhere.”
“There may be none to spare. Almost all available men are engaged against the Saracens.”
“Well, the Emperor’s going to have to make a choice then—whether Constantinople falls to the Saracens or the ghouls.”
Theophilus slashed another ghoul. “Stables!” he cried. “We need horses.”
Cautiously we went around the side of the Praetorium toward the stables. We found there more of what we’d seen in the main courtyard: bloody bones, the skeletonized remains of guards, and a few remaining ghouls that we dispatched easily. The horses, however, were gone. Ghouls had no taste for animal flesh, so the horses must have either run away or been taken by the human survivors. At this, hope sprang in me. Somebody could have made it out. I hope Camytzes was among them.
“We’ll have to find horses out there in the city,” I said. “Isn’t there a livery stable somewhere near here?”
“Aye, a few streets over. But surely the ghouls are out there.”
“It’s a chance we’ll have to take. Come on.” I tightened my grip on the hilts of my swords, and we started back toward the main courtyard.
Appropriately enough on Halloween, my upcoming book, Zombies of Byzantium, now has a release date–and you can preorder it from Amazon and other retailers starting today!
Zombies of Byzantium, published by Samhain Press, will come out in paperback on February 4, 2013 and in e-book version (including Kindle) the next day. Both Amazon and Apple iBookstore are already offering pre-order.
Pre-order for the paperback version is here.
Pre-order for Kindle is here.
Pre-order for the iBookstore is here.
And, if you have a Nook (like me), the Barnes & Noble link is here.
It’s clear that the preferred tag line for the book is “The Dead Have Been Alive For Centuries.”
The book inches closer to release! I’m really excited about it, and things are in the works for signings and other potential release events. So stay tuned!
His book Life Without Giamotti is free between December 7 (the anniversary of Pearl Harbor) and December 21 (the day the world supposedly ends)
About the Author:
“At the age of seven Sean Munger learned to type on a 1948 Remington Rand portable typewriter, and his earliest stories involved monsters, aliens and time travel. Since then he’s regarded books as time machines, able to transport the reader to fantastic worlds both real and imagined. He takes trips to both kinds of worlds frequently.
The son of a military family, Sean lived all over the United States before settling in the Pacific Northwest. Before attending law school he worked as a retail clerk, a go-fer for a professional sports team and briefly was a staff writer for a short-lived horror series on cable TV in the Midwest. He was a practicing attorney for twelve years before returning to his two first loves, history and writing. He now studies and teaches history at a large university in the Northwest.
Sean has been a dedicated fan of heavy metal music for most of his life. In addition to writing historical short stories and zombie novels, he has written for several metal-related publications, both digital and print. He was formerly a Western columnist for Painkiller Magazine, the largest heavy metal magazine in China.
Sean loves to hear from his readers. You can interact with him on his website, www.seanmunger.com, or through his Twitter account, www.twitter.com/Sean_Munger.”