‘Stoke The Flames Higher’ – progress report

Thank you very much to all of you who bought, or borrowed (through Kindle Unlimited), my new novel, ‘Stoke The Flames Higher‘.

Within 24 hours of launch, it had reached the top 10 in Amazon’s ‘Hot New Releases’ lists for both military science fiction and space opera.  It’s slipped a little since then, but it’s still on the front page of both lists, which is great.  That helps new readers to find it more easily.  Its highest sales rank so far has been 1,019 in the Kindle Store, which is also excellent.  (That rank fluctuates from day to day, even from hour to hour, so don’t pay too much attention to a ‘snapshot’ number.)  The book’s received 14 reviews at the time of writing, 13 5-star and 1 4-star.  Thank you so much to everyone who’s reviewed it!

If you have a blog, or (a) social media account(s), I’d be very grateful if you’d please spread the word about the new book’s availability.  Independent authors like myself depend almost entirely on word of mouth to publicize their books.  I couldn’t do this without all of you!

I’m going to be preparing a ‘lessons learned’ post about this book launch, since it has some unique features.  Look for it at Mad Genius Club this Friday.  I’ll post a link to it once it’s up.

Thanks again!



  1. Peter,

    Good book, really enjoyed it. The clarity with which you explain the delays attendant to warfare knowledge when dealing with space distances is outstanding.

    Minor curiosity tho. Toward end of book, Commodore Wu is talking with Steve re loss of Pickle and there is discussion about creating cover story to explain her loss to her lessor-owners. I did not understand the fit of that discussion – since Maxwell was expected to be given an award for blowing it up in a war zone with attendant publicity. Just did not fit, wondered if it was a story line edit issue or ???


  2. @Ryszardsh: Pickle was not leased under that name. It's explained in Maxwell Volume 4, 'Stand Against The Storm'. BuIntel's habit was to lease one or more communications vessels from commercial providers, equip them with intelligence hardware and software, then use them as disguised commercial courier ships for clandestine missions. At the end of their leases, their special equipment was removed and they were returned to their owners. This made them much more difficult to 'track' in Fleet service. By destroying her, Steve ensured that Pickle could not be handed back in the normal way, so another method had to be found of explaining her loss. Nevertheless, the destruction of 'LCS Pickle' could not be linked to the destruction or loss of a leased ship merely by her name, because the lessor would not know that name had been used for her.

    I hope that makes it clearer. Perhaps I should expand on that a bit in a revised version of the book. I'll think about it.

  3. I've composed a review for this book and would like to run it past you before I put it up on Amazon. It goes as follows:

    5 stars.
    I have not read this book yet but based upon the front cover I can tell you that the character development was spot on and truly believable. The story arc from the first line of, "They call me Ishmael" to the denouement of the captain and the whale tied together in that brutal symbolic marriage had me engrossed and unable to put the front cover down till I'd finished it. I did find the sensitivity of the sand worms to vibrations to be a bit contrived at times though. And the unrequited sexual tension between Han and Lando Calrissian added just the right amount of levity to an otherwise hard boiled detective thriller. All in all I would definitely recommend this front cover to all my friends and enemies.

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