Tuesday, April 18, 2023

Spotlight on Alison Morton, author of INCEPTIO


Follow the tour HERE

“It's about Roman blood, survival and money. Mostly yours."

In an alternative New York, Karen Brown is running for her life. She makes a snap decision to flee to Roma Nova - her dead mother's homeland, the last remnant of the Roman Empire in the 21st century. But can Karen tough it out in such an alien culture? And with a crazy killer determined to terminate her for a very personal reason? 

Stifled by the protective cocoon of her Roma Novan family, deceived by her new lover, she propels herself into a dangerous mission. But then the killer sets a trap - she must sacrifice herself for another - and she sees no escape.

A thriller laced with romance and coming of age, this first in series is Roman fiction brought into the 21st century through the lens of alternative history and driven by a female protagonist with heart and courage.


This 10thAnniversary hardback edition includes bonus content: Three character ‘conversations’, two short stories and the story behind INCEPTIO.


Buy links

INCEPTIO 10th Anniversary special edition hardback:

 Universal Link

All formats buy links

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Fun Facts

I’m a persistent control freak.

I confess ­– I can’t let things go. This is probably why I’m still writing and publishing ten years after my first book INCEPTIO came out. However you publish, being a writer is hard work. Extracting that first draft from your mind and soul crushes you as well as elating you. When you write The End, the relief is intense. Then you must set to work trying to make it reasonable, possibly attractive. Being a perfectionist, I feel my work is never done. But the editor seems happy, and so (thankfully) do the readers.

I’ve just bought an electric car.

It’s a revolution in mindset, but then writers have weird, flexible mindsets by default. Full of technology, driving the car is like driving an iPad. It purrs along but makes a louder noise when it detects people or does under 30 kph.

More seriously, polluting fossil fuels must be reduced and quickly. We’re having photovoltaic panels fitted to cover the roof of our house and will charge the car from the abundant sunshine here in southwest France. With any luck, we may even end up selling excess electricity to the grid. Hooray!

 I’m a transmanche commuter.

Although I live in France, speak good French, and hold French nationality as well as British, I write in English for English-speaking markets. In the average year, I hop over to the UK, Ireland (and anywhere else that invites me) eight to ten times a year to speak or participate in events. I did twelve trips one year, and a Ryanair crew member even remembered my name! I tend to sit in the same seat, so perhaps that’s why.

My favourite events include the Roman festivals in York and Colchester, the London Book Fair to meet colleagues and friends, the Historical Novel Society Conference, the International Dublin Writers’ Festival, and crime writers’ conferences (CrimeFest, CWA). This year, I’ve had the added pleasure of a fabulous writing retreat in Cornwall.

I’m visiting the real Roma Nova this summer.

You think my imaginary country of Roma Nova doesn’t exist? 😉  Well, it sort of does, hovering in the Austria/Slovenia area, formerly Roman Noricum. Postponed because of the Covid-19 pandemic, we have rebooked everything, and I can’t wait!

Why do I want to go?

Virunum, near present-day Klagenfurt, was the home of Julia Bacausa, one of the ancestors of the dynasty which founded Roma Nova.

Virunum was where the Roman tribune Apulius was posted in AD 370 after he refused to become Christian and thus turned his back on a glittering career. Virunum was 
where he met the fiery Julia.

Virunum was where the refugees from Rome first sheltered when they left Rome in AD 395, pursued as pagans.

Virunum 1980’s archaeological dig sheltered one of Aurelia’s clandestine listening posts in RETALIO.

So, for me, a visit is a no-brainer. And my other half will take some nice photos for me… 


I’m the ALLi Ambassador for France

No, not representing a nation, but the Alliance of Independent Authors (ALLi) here in France. I’ve published my own work independently since 2012 and have been an ALLi member since 2013 and would not have achieved the success I have nor made such good friends in the writing community without ALLi.

 Basically, it entails being a local source of information about ALLi’s work – campaigns, membership, what ALLi does and showcasing great resources, both free and paid. I’m also the ‘face’ and contact point for ALLi – sending local feedback about what my area needs from ALLi, what goes down well, suggestions for ALLi, and topics on which ALLi needs to act.

It’s unpaid and very flexible, and a great honour to be asked. It also means I can give back some of the experience I’ve accumulated and hopefully help others along the way.


Alison Morton

Alison Morton writes award-winning thrillers featuring tough but compassionate heroines. Her ten-book Roma Nova series is set in an imaginary European country where a remnant of the ancient Roman Empire has survived into the 21st century and is ruled by women who face conspiracy, revolution, and heartache but with a sharp line in dialogue. INCEPTIO starts the adventure…

She blends her fascination for Ancient Rome with six years of military service and a life of reading historical, crime, and thriller fiction. On the way, she collected a BA in modern languages and an MA in history. 

Six full-length Roma Nova novels, including INCEPTIO, have won the BRAG Medallion, the prestigious award for indie fiction. SUCCESSIO, AURELIA and INSURRECTIO were selected as Historical Novel Society’s Indie Editor’s Choices.  AURELIA was a finalist in the 2016 HNS Indie Award. The Bookseller selected SUCCESSIO as Editor’s Choice in its inaugural indie review. The Historical Novel Society recently selected JULIA PRIMA, the first Foundation story set in the 4th century, the accolade of Editors’ Choice.

Alison lives in Poitou in France, the home of Mélisende, the heroine of her two contemporary thrillers, Double Identity and Double Pursuit. Oh, and she’s writing the next Roma Nova story.

Connect with Alison on her Roma Nova site: https://alison-morton.com

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  1. Thanks so much for hosting Alison Morton with such great Fun Facts today, Mary Ann!

    Cathie xx
    The Coffee Pot Book Club

  2. Thank you so much, Mary Ann, for hosting me and the 10th anniversary hardback INCEPTIO. I'm delighted to share Five Fun Facts with your readers and hope they find something interesting, possibly amusing.

  3. So great to hear you're going to Roma Nova after having to postpone it a couple of years back! Cannot wait to hear about your trip. :)