Welcome fellow Sebasti-fans!

Well done, young traveller. You’ve located the hidden portal to the Official Sebastian Grieve Fan Club page! Here you will find answers to all the questions about the series, including the reading order, the inspirations for the stories, and the plots to the novels themselves! And don’t worry if you’re new to the SG (that’s how we Sebasti-fans reference the series) universe. Just read the Introduction post and it’ll explain everything (check out the Context post too). But please, please, please keep all this information and the location of the portal to yourself! 

Sebastian Grieve – Context

The byzantine plots of the Sebastian Grieve series truly were a blast to write and a couple of readers have contacted me to say they’re actually better than the plots to The Mythic Series! Of course, I will put all those readers’ names into future books and have them suffer terrible fates!
But I thought it was important that I provide some context to the book summaries on this site…

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The Sebastian Grieve Series – Official Reading Guide

In the Introduction to the SG series, I noted some clues as to the correct reading order. In particular, there is a scene in The Mythic where Lucy browses along Amber’s bookcase and reads the titles in this order: Sebastian Grieve and the Hermit’s Cauldron, Sebastian Grieve and the Cerulean Caduceus, Sebastian Grieve and the Screaming Skull.

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Sebastian Grieve – An Introduction

I had a lot of fun coming up with the titles of the Sebastian Grieve novels, my series-within-a-series. The titles always preceded the details within, which is typically what happens with the parent series. I love titles. I have possibly hundreds of novels and screenplays that are nothing more than a title and sentence summary. I have managed to slip some into The Mythic Series, but some are destined to remain in musty notebooks, never seeing their potential fulfilled.

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The first book in The Sebastian Grieve Series

The Secrets and Truths Trilogy - Book One

Sebastian Grieve is an ordinary 14-year-old boy, living in an ordinary street, in an ordinary suburb of Birmingham with what he thinks are his ordinary mother and father. He attends an ordinary school where his two best friends are girl-genius Magnolia Maguire—who bears a secret crush for Mr Grieve—and boy-disaster Derek Dippy—who has a secret crush on Magnolia.

But one day, Sebastian arrives home to find his parents dead. It appears to have been a random break-in, the house has been ransacked and anything valuable taken, and the police quickly close the case.

Sebastian, however, has already developed a reputation as a boy detective and so their murder becomes his most important case yet. Just who killed his parents, and why? Sebastian searches their home looking for answers and, through a trail of clues that appear to have been left for him to find, he discovers a strange puzzle box, but he cannot unlock it.

Sebastian learns he is being sent to live with his uncle Lord Bram Polyps—Mrs Grieve’s twin brother. He spends one last evening in his old home with his two best friends keeping him company. In the middle of the night a small hunchbacked man called Stumpy turns up at the door and reveals that Sebastian’s father was a wizard. In fact, not just any wizard, but a descendant of the legendary Merlin himself! Stumpy says that in order to claim his illustrious magical inheritance Sebastian must locate the Hermit’s Cauldron, Merlin’s magic crucible. With his father dead, Sebastian must drink from the pot in order to ensure he continues the family’s magical line. If he does not do so within the next seven days, then that power will slip into the ether, available for possession by any magical creature, good or evil. 

Sebastian refuses to believe Stumpy and throws him out into the cold darkness. The next day our hero is moved to Lord Bram’s opulent, but creepy, castle on the outskirts of Manchester. Sebastian has never met Lord Bram, but his uncle is incredibly welcoming and generous, although he cannot help but make callous comments about Mr Grieve, who came to Birmingham from Ghana, and who Lord Bram blames for driving Sebastian’s mother away from his side of the family. The pale-skinned Lord Bram also only appears at night, claiming that he has a rare skin condition that makes him sensitive to sunlight.

Of course, our boy detective treats his generous-but-peculiar uncle as yet another mystery to solve. However, he is totally unprepared for what he learns. Lord Bram, indeed all of Sebastian’s mother’s family, are vampires and their distant forebear was Dracula himself! Mrs Grieve was a rare vampire, able to live a normal life with none of a typical vampire’s weaknesses, but retaining her vampiric powers, all things that Sebastian has inherited. Those powers will activate the moment Sebastian utters the phrase “Accipio qui sum”.

Most shockingly, Sebastian learns that Lord Bram murdered his parents to force Sebastian to his side for some yet unknown purpose.

Sebastian escapes his uncle’s house only to run into the Regime Of Witches, Lycanthropes, Idyllists, Nosferata, and Ghouls—the body that oversees all magic. Lord Bram is respected by the Regime and they won’t believe Sebastian’s claims that he is a murderer. However, one mid-level Regime representative, the lovely Jaikay Ellem does promise to look into the deaths of the Grieves.

Sebastian seeks the help of Magnolia and Derek and is reminded about the puzzle box he discovered. With Magnolia’s help he unlocks the box to reveal a map to the location of the Hermit’s Cauldron that Stumpy told them about, located in a series of catacombs deep beneath Birmingham. But to get there he and Magnolia must face three challenges to prove themselves worthy to the Cauldron—deadly challenges! And Lord Bram is hot on their trail!

Will Sebastian secure the Hermit’s Cauldron and ignite his magical abilities? Will he utter the phrase and become a vampire like his mother? Will Lord Bram capture them, or is the Cauldron his actual target? Can Derek locate Stumpy, who is holding a huge secret that might be Sebastian’s only hope? Will Magnolia reveal her feelings for Sebastian? Or has learning his true nature made her doubt her love for him?

This story ends with a final battle—nephew vs uncle—and it is revealed there is much more than just Sebastian’s life on the line! Will Sebastian say the words “Accipio qui sum”? If he doesn’t he will die.

Sebastian Grieve was an ordinary 14 year-old boy. But no longer. This “ordinary” boy just became extra-ordinary.


Image by Mark Hultgren from Pixabay

The SECOND book in The Sebastian Grieve Series

The Secrets and Truths Trilogy - Book Two

In Book One, English teenanger Sebastian Grieve, the descendant of both Merlin and Dracula, escaped the clutches of his evil uncle Lord Bram Polyps by accepting both sides of his past. He is still struggling with the duality of his nature, but he’s not alone. Mr Grieve now has a mentor, the head of the legendary King Arthur who lives on, bonded to the back of Sebastian’s diminutive hunchback dwarf pal Stumpy.

Arthur has arranged for Sebastian to attend Warthog’s Academy For The Eerily Resourced in the USA. Sebastian learns that both his mother and father went to Warthog’s but kept that information secret from him. Sebastian doesn’t want to leave behind his best friends Magnolia Maguire and Derek Dippy and so Arthur arranges for them to join him.

Starting in their first year as WAFTERs is difficult for all three teens. Sebastian finds himself a minor celebrity, given his unique heritage. However, Magnolia and Derek, not being “eerily resourced” suffer bullying, which is only stopped when they make friends with Warthog’s Irish groundskeeper Tater. Tater loves whiskey, dispensing sage advice, and swearing.

Magnolia is no closer to expressing her true feelings for Sebastian, and it’s looking less likely she ever will since their fellow student, blonde bombshell Mae Day, has captured the vampire-wizard’s attention.

Unfortunately, Miss Day is not who she seems—she is a shapeshifter working for Lord Polyps. He needs Sebastian to open a gateway to Hades, a gateway the Lord will use to enter the underworld and obtain the Cerulean Caduceus which is the key to commanding an army of the undead.

Mae tricks Sebastian into opening the portal and Lord Polyps uses it, revealing his plan to Sebastian. Realising what he has done, Sebastian tries to follow his uncle, but will need help to breach the block the Lord has put in his way.

Sebastian is unable to convince Head of Warthog’s Professor Rumbleseat of the danger so turns to his friend at the Regime, Jaikay Ellem. Defying the higher-ups at the Regime, Jaikay assists Sebastian and Derek to access Hell.

As they try to find Lord Polyps, travelling through the nine circles of Hell, Derek reveals that he has loved Magnolia since the first time he saw her and Sebastian urges Derek to tell Miss Maguire how he feels. Sebastian certainly doesn’t want Magnolia. His relationship with Mae Day has put him off romance for good!

Sebastian has a lot more than his lovesick friend to contend with, however. Lord Polyps has set traps for his nephew and it is only with the help of a prisoner called Stonewall Washington, an animated marble that is a dead ringer for Michelangelo’s David.

Sebastian and his friends race  to locate the Caduceus before the Lord does. But Hell is a very large place! And everything there wants to kill them!

Will Cerberus, the three-headed guardian of Hades, become another new friend will Sebastian be his latest snack? Why will Mae Day betray Lord Polyps to another villain—known only as Styke—who wants Sebastian dead? And, along with the Cerulean Caduceus, what surprise awaits Sebastian, Derek, Stonewall, and Lord Polyps in the centre of Hell? Hint: It’s a death trap set by Stryke.

Sebastian and his uncle will need to team up in order to escape certain doom. In a shocking twist, it is Lord Polyps who sacrifices himself in order to keep Sebastian alive.

Sebastian Grieve is now a student at Warthog’s but it’s the underworld that’s about to be schooled!


Image by Stefan Keller from Pixabay

The THIRD book in The Sebastian Grieve Series

The Secrets and Truths Trilogy - Book Three

It’s Sebastian’s sophomore year at Warthog’s Academy For The Eerily Resourced and our vampire-wizard-detective is failing his classes. It isn’t his fault though, someone at school keeps trying to murder him—first with a poison apple and then through a water trap in the school’s swimming pool! Is the murderer one of his fellow WAFTERS? It can’t be his uncle Lord Bram Polyps, because he is trapped in Hades. Or is he? And, at the end of Book Two, the Lord said he needed Sebastian alive. Or does he?

Just as well Sebastian has a new mystery to sink his magical fangs into—a mysterious skull unearthed from beneath Warthog’s oldest building. This skull is screaming, but only Sebastian can hear its cries demanding justice. Someone was murdered a very long time ago—and Sebastian is determined to find out who and why even though Professor Rumbleseat, the school’s head, forbids it.

Sebastian’s quest to solve this cold case will lead he and his friend Magnolia Maguire to seek assistance from a former headmistress of Warthog’s—the formidable Lady Shady. Unfortunately, she is an inmate of the impenetrable floating prison Knox Fort. Getting to a flying prison is beyond even Sebastian’s abilities so it is just as well his mentor King Arthur arranges for assistance from legendary flying steed Pegasus.

Meanwhile, Derek Dippy has gone from zero to hero and is now a star of Warthog’s favourite sport Wadrumple—a type of polo played underwater on giant seahorses. Surely this new popularity will make Derek more attractive to his secret crush Magnolia?

Having learned about Derek’s affection for Magnolia in Book Two, Sebastian is now looking at Miss Maguire in a whole new light. A very favourable light. However, before he can reveal his feelings to Magnolia she is kidnapped by Sebastian’s mysterious assassin.

Sebastian and Derek hunt for Magnolia, getting help from Jaikay Ellem, who has moved up the ranks at the Regime Of Witches, Lycanthropes, Idyllists, Nosferata, and Ghouls. But when Sebastian mentions to Derek that he now sees Magnolia as more than a friend it puts a split in their friendship. Worse, Stumpy reveals something that King Arthur has been hiding—that Sebastian’s unique heritage means he has the capacity for great good and great evil. There are prophecies written about him, one stating that if he ever falls in love with a mortal he will become the Leviathan—the most destructive force this world has ever seen. This love triangle just became deadly!

Sebastian manages to rescue Magnolia but, now knowing the truth, he has to shun her, even though he can’t bring himself to say why. Magnolia is shattered by Sebastian’s new aloofness but reveals she has learned that the Screaming Skull has a connection to none other than…groundskeeper Tater! However when they go to question Tater they find him missing! Did Tater flee or has he been captured?

With things complicated with Derek and Magnolia, Sebastian turns to another friend at Warthog’s Academy, a werewolf boy known as Nigel Canus. Together, Sebastian and Nigel return to Knox Fort for more information on Tater’s ancestor from the only person who knows it, Lady Shady.

What shocking secret about Warthog’s will Lady Shady reveal? Who is the mastermind behind the attempts on Sebastian’s life? And which of Sebastian’s friends will betray him in the most shocking way?

Someone will die to save Sebastian Grieve and because of that death our hero will never be the same again. Ellem


Image by Stefan Keller from Pixabay

The FOURTH book in The Sebastian Grieve Series

The Stone and Faith Trilogy - Book One

During the horrific conclusion of Book Three, that saw the death of Stumpy the Dwarf at the hands of Lord Bram Polyps, who escaped Hell with the the help of Sebastian’s supposed friend Nigel Canus, Sebastian became the host for the head of his mentor, King Arthur. Lord Bram now has possession of the Cerulean Caduceus. Lord Bram has gone into hiding but Sebastian knows it’s just a matter of time before his uncle reappears to threaten him again.

After the revelation that the magic Warthog’s was founded upon was achieved through the blood sacrifice of 1,000 innocent, ordinary humans—a secret kept by every principal in Warthog’s history—administrators from the Regime Of Witches, Lycanthropes, Idyllists, Nosferata, and Ghouls have taken over the school and one in particular, a wizard simply known as Professor Y, is especially protective of Sebastian and his friends. Sebastian is suspicious of Professor Y but his friend in the Regime, Jaikay Ellem, insists Professor Y is a  good guy.

Tater the groundskeeper, a direct descendant of the Warthog’s founding family, has been heartbroken by the knowledge of what his ancestors did and that he had been the one trying to kill Sebastian to keep that secret—acting under some inherited instinct. The Regime attempts to fire Tater but Sebastian successfully fights to keep the groundskeeper there. If anyone understands what it’s like to have familial baggage it’s Mr Grieve!

Sebastian learned he must not fall in love with a mortal, but there are a host of non-mortal Junior girls at school. This year has brought a new one—Song Sophea, a foreign exchange student from Lycée Lychee, a magical school like Warthog’s based in Cambodia.

Derek recovers from being possessed by the warlock founder of Warthog’s, who had taken control of Mr Dippy to help Tater keep the school’s shameful past from being uncovered. Derek has now lost his Wadrumple abilities as it wasn’t his prowess but that of Tater the First, who invented the sport. But the possession has imbued Derek with empathic abilities so he is now able to both feel emotions and control the emotions of others, something he keeps a secret from his pals.

Through his private studies with Professor Y, Sebastian learns of the plight of the Crystal Giant, a behemoth slumbering underneath the Pyrenees. Lord Bram stole the Giant’s life-force years ago as part of his long-term plan to rule the world. Only the Viridian Heart, located in the subterranean city of Za, can save the Giant. Feeling responsible for the past actions of his uncle, Sebastian requests leave from school to find the Heart, however the Regime has forbidden travel there.

Sebastian isn’t one to follow the rules and he heads to the fabled city anyway, accompanied by Derek, Magnolia Maguire, and Song. As much as Sebastian would like to further the relationship with the new student, he cannot do so without revealing that he is King Arthur’s current host. Derek, of course, can sense the King’s presence but he is more intent on using his new abilities to woo Magnolia who, in turn, is still holding a candle for Sebastian and is jealous of the new rival for Sebastian’s attention, Song. While Song is fond of Sebastian she has far stronger feelings for Magnolia.

Securing the Viridian Heart will not be easy, because Lord Bram is already after it. He wants the powerful artefact to add to his arsenal and, while he cannot kill Sebastian, he will very happily strike at the boy through Magnolia, Derek, and Song. Fortunately, Professor Y and Tater track Sebastian’s team to Za and rescue the teenagers.

This is when we learn the reason travel to Za is forbidden. Zyraba, the Ruler of Za, has a personal vendetta against the Regime and suddenly Professor Y finds himself on trial for trespass, with the penalty being death! The brilliant Magnolia heads up the defence of their new teacher, eager to prove to Sebastian she’s worthy of his love. But, in a shocking twist, as a vampire-wizard Sebastian carries a familial special debt to Za and he is forced to act as the prosecution!

Does Zyraba turn out to be Sebastian’s friend or a brand new nemesis? What is Zyraba’s interest in Magnolia? What will Sebastian do when he learns Professor Y manipulated him into coming to Zyraba and how does it fit with his plans for Warthog’s? Will Magnolia be manipulated to turn traitor in order to eliminate Song, her new rival for Sebastian? Or will Song force Magnolia to confront the truth about herself and who she might love? Are Derek’s new mental abilities a curse, or the thing that saves them all? And what is the shocking truth behind Sebastian’s Uncle Bram, a truth that will leave everyone gasping?!

Sebastian Grieve will save the Crystal Giant. But at what cost?


Image by Peter H from Pixabay

The FIFTH book in The Sebastian Grieve Series

The Stone and Faith Trilogy - Book Two

Sebastian has achieved the unbelievable—an entire year at Warthog’s without an attack from Lord Bram Polyps. That’s just as well for it’s taken an entire year for Sebastian to come to terms with the truth about the Lord.  For Bram is not actually Sebastian’s uncle! He is none other than Sebastian’s original vampire forebear—Dracula—playing the role of Bram! Dracula cast a spell to make Sebastian forget the truth but it backfired and Dracula now believes he is actually Lord Bram.

Unbeknownst to Sebastian, there’s a good reason for Bram’s absence—he is now a prisoner of Zyraba, the ruler of Za. Zyraba, is in love with Magnolia Maguire, even proposing to her during the trial of Professor Y in The Crystal Giant. But Magnolia declined. Not only does she lack feelings for Zyraba, despite having tried to rid herself of her attachment to Sebastian, and a glimpse into her future where she sees herself married to Derik Dippy, she is still in love with Mr Grieve.

Zyraba has been prevented from attacking Sebastian due to the magical spell around Warthog’s, but with Sebastian’s impending graduation, he vows to become the teenager’s new archenemy, promising to tear Mr Grieve’s asunder life as payback for Magnolia’s rejection.

Leaving school should be a celebration for Sebastian, but at senior prom he is dumped by his girlfriend, mermaid Lori LaMer, who has tired of Sebastian’s moodiness, and then the Warthog’s graduation ceremony is attacked by a flock of stone griffins! Sebastian wants to stay to help the school’s overseers—the Regime Of Witches, Lycanthropes, Idyllists, Nosferata, and Ghouls—investigate the assault, mainly because he has nowhere else to go. But having graduated it’s time for Mr Grieve to leave Warthog’s behind.

Just as well Stumpy the Dwarf, resurrected as a reward by the rescued Crystal Giant, is back and King Arthur is now fused again to Stumpy’s back. King Arthur reveals that Sebastian is now of an age to inherit his ancestral mansion back in Birmingham—247 Bougainvillea Lane. The wizarding side of the Grieve family has held the title to this handsome Georgian manor for hundreds of years and, as the last surviving Grieve, the house belongs to Sebastian.

With Magnolia and Derek in tow, Sebastian starts to explore his new home, only to learn it is a house of secrets, with doorways that lead to a variety of different locations, both familiar and fantastical. The house doesn’t seem to want its new inhabitants there, however, and keeps trying to eject them or, worse, murder them!

The unkempt grounds are even more dangerous, concealing a host of nightmarish foliage and beasts underneath the overgrowth. But a familiar face shows up to help tame the wild gardens. Tater, the Warthog’s groundskeeper, has been banished from the school by the Regime as part of a punishment for assisting the altruistic but misguided Professor Y during the events of Book Four. It is Tater who uncovers a plaque that is a key to why the house keeps trying to kill the teenagers. Sebastian will need to undertake a series of twelve trials to earn the right to claim Bougainvillea Lane as his own.

Why does one of Sebastian’s new neighbours at number 247, Mrs Dribblebottom, think Mr Grieve is a boy called Nimrod Sopply? Who is their other neighbour, Dr Goode, and is his name reflective of his true nature, or is this doctor bad? And how can our three teenage heroes live happily under the roof when Derek loves Magnolia who in turn loves Sebastian who cannot return Magnolia’s love as it would transform him into the Leviathan and bring about the end of the world?

But the trio will need to co-operate if Sebastian is to survive the twelve trials that include an Everlasting Maze, a visionquest through Magnolia’s nightmares, and a trip back in time where Sebastian comes face to face with his parents!

Meanwhile, the Regime is torn asunder by Lord Bram’s one-time associate, Nigel Canus who has infiltrated the body, seeking his own power. There is a war brewing. If Nigel successfully uses Lord Bram’s forces to take over the Regime there will be no stopping him from killing all vampires with whom Nigel’s race of werewolves had an ancient enmity. Professor Y learns that Nigel was also Stryke, the villain from Book Two, who only assisted Lord Bram as part of his own scheme. Professor Y tries to warn others but is promptly killed by Canus.

Are the gothic griffins who keep attacking the mansion one of the house’s trials, Zyraba’s attempts to meddle in Sebastian’s life, more trouble from Nigel Canus or something else altogether? Will Magnolia finally tell Sebastian she loves him and will he reveal why he cannot love her back? Or will the trials of the heart prove to be the one mystery the vampire-wizard detective cannot solve? Why is Mrs Dribblebottom the person who will reveal a surprise that will make Sebastian finally feel less alone? How does such a large house have only one bathroom? Does Sebastian dare complete the twelfth trial when he learns the curse that winning the mansion’s respect will bring? And why does Sebastian need to turn to Dr Goode in order to triumph in that final trial?

Welcome to adulthood, Sebastian Grieve! Good luck. You’ll need it!


Image by Stefan Keller from Pixabay

The SIXTH book in The Sebastian Grieve Series

The Stone and Faith Trilogy - Book Three

Having completed its twelve deadly trials, 247 Bougainvillea Lane has accepted Sebastian as its rightful heir. Even better, he now has his long-lost identical cousin—Nimrod Sopply, Lord Bram Polyps’ (secretly Sebastian’s forebear Dracula) son—living there also. Sure, Mr Grieve has had to assume the mansion’s curse—that he will die as soon as he reaches the age of thirty—but he’ll face that problem when he comes to it!

Sebastian also has a new ally, his neighbour Dr Goode who was revealed to be a childhood friend of Sebastian’s father. Sebastian owes Dr Goode his life or should that be, lives for he learned that the doctor has been secretly protecting Sebastian from deathly threats for years. Like Sebastian, Dr Goode is also a child of two worlds—part-wizard and part-naiad, meaning he has special powers over and in water. Sebastian bonds further with Dr Goode, sharing a kinship.

Owning a crumbling Georgian mansion is expensive—even if Tater the groundskeeper is working free of charge to tame the relentlessly wild gardens. Adding to their woes, there are decades of unpaid rates and taxes owing! Sebastian will lose his family home unless he can secure a windfall, and quickly!

It’s just as well he, Magnolia Maguire, and Derek Dippy are now partners in Sleuths Inc, Birmingham’s newest detective agency and hopefully their first case could solve all their money worries. Sleuths Inc is hired to track down the missing wife of Russian oligarch Vladimir Zolotos. Zolotos is a minotaur who has used his magical muscle to build an empire. But his wife has gone missing and he suspects it is the work of one of his enemies. Zolotos and his magical daughter Anastasiya insist on joining Sebastian in locating her mother.

Sebastian is glad to have the beautiful Anastasiya along, but Magnolia is not! She thought she had resolved her feelings for the vampire-wizard but this Russian beauty is dredging them up all over again. Derek, also thinking that Magnolia was truly over Sebastian, finally declares that he loves her. But his timing couldn’t be worse for the moment he does Magnolia too is kidnapped, presumably by the same group who have Mrs Zolotos. Sebastian soon learns who is responsible—the Cult of Calamity. And it turns out the Cult intend to sacrifice all those they have captured.

The hunt for Mrs Zolotos and Magnolia take Sebastian and the Zolotos clan across the world, including back to Warthog’s. The Regime Of Witches, Lycanthropes, Idyllists, Nosferata, and Ghouls—who have run the school for the past few years—are not pleased to see their recent alumni. But why? Is the Regime, still involved in an internal power struggle caused by Nigel Canus, somehow tied up with the Cult of Calamity? The answer is: yes!

Meanwhile, back home in Birmingham, Zyraba of Za is still out to hurt Sebastian and decides to take Mr Grieve prisoner. But instead he nets Nimrod, who can’t convince Zyraba he’s not the vampire-wizard! In trying to save Nimrod, Sebastian’s neighbour Dr Goode manage to also get captured by Zyraba. In the dungeons of Za, Nimrod comes face to face with his father, Lord Bram Polyps, and it is a bittersweet reunion as Lord Bram has forgotten who Nimrod is. Nimrod wrestles with whether to restore his father’s memory, deciding against it. But the truth has a way to coming out! The spell on Lord Bram is broken and he wants Nimrod to rule by his side. Nimrod, however, would rather never see his father again!

How will Sleuths Inc wrench Magnolia and Anastasiya’s mother from the Cult’s clutches? What will they do when Magnolia tells them what she has learned—that Mrs Zolotos isn’t the Cult’s prisoner, but their leader?! Will Nimrod assist his father to escape captivity, or will vampire blood prove to be thinner than water? And why do both their fates rest upon the good Dr Goode’s secret invulnerability to magic?

This really wasn’t a good time for Stumpy the Dwarf and King Arthur to go on a pilgrimage to Stumpy’s homeland underneath the ice of the South Pole—but that will cause them to uncover a new prophecy—for our world to live, Sebastian Grieve must die! But that may happen anyway as the Cult’s true goal is revealed: they are going to steal Sebastian’s magical powers and he will not survive if they do.

Even if Sebastian defeats the Cult of Calamity he will end up facing a totally new kind of sinister fate!


Image by Thomas Wolter from Pixabay

The SEVENTH book in The Sebastian Grieve Series

The Blood and Rage Trilogy - Book One

Sebastian, Magnolia Maguire, and Derek Dippy are still struggling to make ends meet due to the overheads on their crumbling mansion, but Magnolia’s newfound magical powers might be able to help—does anyone want to hire a young woman who can fire green electricity from her fingertips?

Sebastian believes Magnolia accidentally received her powers in their fateful battle against the Cult of Calamity, but in fact she stole the Gemerald Eye, the power of the Emerald Gem-Herald who was the Cult’s high priest. Magnolia knows that using the Eye will slowly kill her but she will do anything to make herself special enough to win Sebastian’s love.

Stumpy and King Arthur reveal the awful prophecy they learned in the last book: Sebastian Grieve must die before the next February 29th or the world will end. Unfortunately, it’s now mid-January of a Leap Year!

There may be a way to avert the prediction though—a spell powered by the Bloodbone Crown, a magical object worn by the regent Olelo: Lion King of the Animals. Unfortunately, Olelo dwells in the twilight dimension of Flauna, a place that’s been cut off from our world for the past hundred years, so getting the Crown won’t be easy.

All of this proves too much for Sebastian and he leaves Birmingham in the dead of night, alone, deciding to run away rather than face his problems. His identical cousin, who escaped his prison in Za by co-operating with his estranged father Bram Dracula, agrees to pretend to be Sebastian so Mr Grieve has time to sort himself out. However, Nimrod neglects to tell Sebastian that Lord Bram is again free and seeking to use the teenage vampire-wizard in his plan to rule the world.

Dr Goode would tell Sebastian but he has his own problems, namely hiding from a series of assassins. Who wants the good doctor dead?

This is the exact wrong time for Zyraba of Za to strike again and he swaps bodies with Derek as a last ditch effort to win the love of Magnolia. However, Zyraba doesn’t realise that Derek declared his love for Magnolia during the events of the Cult of Calamity. She has already rejected “Derek” and quickly realises her friend is not who he appears to be. 

Magnolia pretends to return Zyraba’s affections so she can trick him into revealing where the real Derek is being held. But Zyraba learns that she knows he isn’t Derek. And Magnolia learns that Zyraba knows that she knows the truth. This romantic subplot just got utterly twisted!

Sebastian’s travels take him to where his father was born in Ghana, where he meets the lovely Omen Jones, a reformed Siren of myth who encourages our hero to return home. But before he can do that they are hunted down by Lord Bram. Lord Bram has killed his associate Nigel Canus and resumed his master plan to turn Sebastian into the Levianthan. Even if Sebastian and Omen can elude him there is that pesky Crown to locate!

Just as well Sebastian has been having visions of his ancestor Merlin and he realises the legendary wizard has, in fact, been leaving him clues to the location of the magical portal to Flauna. Sebastian and Omen Jones travel there only to learn that King Olelo will gladly give them the Bloodbone Crown with one proviso—Omen Jones will need to remain there as his bride.

Back at home, Tater has caught the eye of Sebastian’s neighbour, Mrs Dribblebottom. If the magically deadly plants in the garden don’t eat up Tater, the lusty widow Dribblebottom might!

Meanwhile, Dr Goode seeks protection from the Regime. The Regime’s bloody civil strife is over with the defeat and death of Nigel Canus and the sorceress who killed Canus is their new leader—Sebastian’s good friend and ally Jaikay EllemBut is the Regime’s special interest in helping Dr Goode mere curiosity, or something murkier?

Will Omen stay in Flauna and allow Sebastian to return with the Crown? What secret is Omen hiding? What will Magnolia need to do to locate the real Derek and undo Zyraba’s body-swap spell? And when Zyraba fails to win Magnolia’s heart will he, instead, settle for Sebastian’s head? But that’s not actually Sebastian, it’s Nimrod Sopply! Watch out, Nimrod, Zyraba is coming for you!

Mr Grieve will ultimately betray Omen Jones (who is subsequently revealed to be his former girlfriend Mae Day) so he can return with the Crown. But will he be in time to save his cousin, himself, and indeed the world from the Leap Year curse? The Bloodbone Crown’s spell involves a deadly sacrifice and someone is not making out of this story alive.

Note: The movie adaptation of this novel is titled Sebastian Grieve and the Crown of Blood


Image by Stefan Keller from Pixabay

The EIGHTH book in The Sebastian Grieve Series

The Blood and Rage Trilogy - Book Two

After the tragic conclusion of the previous book, where Sebastian seemingly killed his friend Derek in order to save his identical cousin Nimrod, something which also ended the Leap Year curse, things at 247 Bougainvillea Lane are slightly tense. Magnolia and Sebastian aren’t on speaking terms. Nimrod wishes he could help the two friends reconcile, but grows ever more frustrated with their constant bickering.

Derek isn’t really dead, however, for Sebastian actually killed his foe Zyraba who had body-swapped with Mr Dippy. Derek is alive, stuck in Zyraba’s body, and trapped in Za. The only one who knew this was Magnolia, but her memory of that was wiped during Sebastian’s battle with Zyraba and so Derek is all on his own.

Magnolia feels so guilty for her part in Derek’s “death” that she wants to use the Emerald Eye to create a simulacrum of Derek. Sebastian forbids it, for he has learned that each time Magnolia uses the Gem it shortens her lifespan. But Magnolia does it anyway then also erases Derek’s “death” from all their memories.

The various traumas the team has faced over the past few years takes its toll, and bubbles into one huge argument where Sebastian and Magnolia come to magical blows. It is only Dr Goode who stops their battle turning deadly. He tries to resolve the tension but he too fails. It may be time to dissolve Sleuths Inc and for everyone to go their separate ways.

But, just as anger threatens to tear them apart, it is hate that will bring them together. Or at least Hate, the original God of the Hunt. Sebastian is invited to participate in Hate’s once-in-a-century decathlon of brawn and brains. Hitting things sounds good to the vampire-wizard detective at the moment and so he enters, taking Tater the groundskeeper with him as Tater, having spurned the affections of the widow Dribblebottom, is keen for a change of scenery. 

Dr Goode secretly tags along, partly to keep an eye on Sebastian and partly so he can continue to investigate the Regime Of Witches, Lycanthropes, Idyllists, Nosferata, and Ghouls. The Regime uses the Tournament as a recruiting tool. Head of the Regime Jaikay Ellem is revealed to be behind the threats to Dr Goode but it’s not clear whether she is simply prejudiced against him due to his part-naiad nature or whether she wants him dead for another reason.

Upon starting the contest Sebastian is shocked to see Magnolia in the lineup. She is angry with Sebastian’s attempts to control her use of magic and wants to show him she’s just as capable as he. The two of them go up against each other, and a number of other fantastical beings in ten knockout events, each more bloody than the previous. The Tournament also features two surprise contestants—Lord Bram Polyps, actually Sebastian’s forebear Dracula, and Stonewall, the animated statue imprisoned in Hell who assisted Sebastian in The Cerulean Caduceus. Lord Bram claims to have reformed and even assists Sebastian to make it through a couple of the earlier rounds. Stonewall, meanwhile, earned his way out of Hell and is there trying to win money to start his new life in the world.

Lord Bram’s contrition appears to be genuine, and he even reconciles with his son Nimrod. Nimrod wants to forgive his father for his past misdeeds and there is one thing that will win his trust. He wants Lord Bram to surrender himself to the authorities for the murder of Sebastian’s parents. However, this is where Nimrod learns a long-buried secret. Lord Bram did not kill Sebastian’s parents. He claimed credit for it and he has used their loss to his advantage, but he did not do the deadly deed.

The Tournament of Hate assists Sebastian and Magnolia to resolve their tangled, unrequited romance and Sebastian even comes to admire Magnolia’s control of her powers. But will secrets also tear their reunion apart for not only is Magnolia hiding the physical toll that being the Gem-Herald is having on her, Sebastian has been affected by using magic. When Merlin appeared to Sebastian to help find the Bloodbone Crown, their energies intermingled. During the Tournament Sebastian learns that he received a power boost as a result. Sebastian chooses to keep this from Magnolia, for he also learns the power upgrade has made it difficult for him to control his negative emotions, especially his anger.

All this time, Derek Dippy is trying to leave Za, but to do that he first needs to escape Za’s citizens who have now decided they want their despot leader dead. Derek tries to transport one of his friends to Za but only nets the Derek-simulacrum that Magnolia created . Fake Derek, who the real Mr Dippy quickly dubs “Ferek”, assists him out of Za, but with the angry population hot on their tails.

Derek and Ferek are relieved when representatives from the Regime show up to save them. Too late they learn that the Regime too have an agenda, namely to conquer Za and take its power for their own. In a huge turnaround, Derek and Ferek side with the Za citizens who wanted them dead. But will they die at the hands of the Regime instead? Fortunately, while at the Tournament Dr Goode stumbled across the Regime’s plans for Za and he shows up and helps Derek defeat them.

Meanwhile, in Birmingham, a new love affair blossoms when Stumpy the Dwarf and Mrs Dribblebottom fall for one another. How will Sebastian’s widowed neighbour react when she learns that Stumpy is the host for King Arthur’s parasitic head?

Back in Hate’s realm, Nimrod is heartbroken when he learns that Lord Bram hasn’t really reformed, but was using the Tournament to slowly hypnotise Sebastian. Lord Bram needs Sebastian alive and compliant for it is only with a living Mr Grieve that he can achieve his final goal: creating the Leviathan that he will use to rule the world. It is, in fact, Lord Bram’s emotional manipulation causing Sebastian’s mood swings, not his new powers.

Sebastian defeats Magnolia in battle but, unwittingly, it is Magnolia’s powers that helps him control his new powers and shake off Lord Bram’s machinations. With Magnolia’s help Sebastian reaches the final of the Tournament of Hate. But waiting there is Uncle Bram and their host Hate just decided to change the rules—the final match is a battle to the death.

The series has produced major deaths before, but this time it’s truly significant—a lead character will die and that death will be forever!


Image by Comfreak from Pixabay

The NINTH book in The Sebastian Grieve Series

The Blood and Rage Trilogy - Book Three

Sebastian survived the Tournament of Hate, but only thanks to the sacrifice of his lookalike cousin Nimrod. Nimrod took Sebastian’s place in the final round, knowing he would be going up against his father Lord Bram in a fight to the death. Lord Bram was distraught when he learned he murdered his son rather than Sebastian, and Mr Grieve’s dreams are haunted by his uncle’s vow to abandon his plans to use Sebastian to rule the world—from now on he won’t rest until Sebastian dies!

The Tournament had another casualty, of course: Tater. Sebastian’s loyal groundskeeper was paralysed from the waist down while saving Magnolia from certain death and he is dispatched to the Roberts Health Institute in Galbraith to recover. Roberts of Galbraith has a reputation as the finest magical hospital in the world, but what sinister secrets await poor Tater there?

The Tournament did have one positive outcome. Magnolia realises that she doesn’t have feelings for Sebastian, it’s Derek who is her soulmate. When they return to 247 Bougainvillea Lane, Magnolia hopes to strike up a relationship with Derek—but she doesn’t know he is actually “Ferek”, the simulacrum that she created then caused everybody to forget about.

Ferek must continue to pretend to be Derek, as the real Mr Dippy is still trapped in the body of Zyraba, former ruler of Za. Derek sent Ferek back to masquerade as him while he and Dr Goode infiltrate the Regime Of Witches, Lycanthropes, Idyllists, Nosferata, and Ghouls. They both believe the Regime are rotten and Dr Goode can’t shake the feeling that this shady organisation has special plans for Sebastian.

While Sebastian thinks he’s left the Tournament of Hate behind, the god Hate himself learns of Nimrod’s deception and decides Sebastian must be punished for breaking the rules. Mr Grieve’s sentence? Be the guardian of Hate’s children for six months. At first Sebastian thinks he has gotten off easily, but when he meets Peter, Paul, and Merry he may wish he’d actually died back in the games!

Peter has a passion for arson and theft. Paul, is fifteen, and painfully shy. And baby Merry may or may not be possessed. Sebastian becomes Peter’s mentor while Magnolia sets about helping Paul the wallflower to grow but, unwittingly, this turns Paul evil.

Magnolia is confused when Ferek won’t return her affections and now is the worst possible time for Sebastian to realise that, as Magnolia is a non-mortal, he can actually be with her and not bring about the end of the world. But Ms Maguire is truly stuck on Ferek. Will Sebastian stoop to magic to make her love him?

Meanwhile, Stumpy and Mrs Dribblebottom have taken charge of baby Merry. The couple has decided to move in together, but it’s because Mrs Dribblebottom has fallen for King Arthur, who equally is in love with the widow. How will they break the news to Stumpy who, of course, has King Arthur stuck on his back!

While Sebastian and Magnolia think Peter is their biggest headache, it’s Paul who sells out the pair to the Feary Queen, ruler of the ethereal land of Whether, a place ripped from our grimmest storybook tales. The Queen isn’t bad so much as mad and has her new captives act out various famous love stories for the amusement of her circus-like royal court.

Using the Queen’s magic mirror, which enables one to spy on anyone in our world, Sebastian and Magnolia discover the truth about Ferek, that the real Derek is out there, and of the danger he’s in when the Regime learn about his and Dr Goode’s infiltration. Through the bizarre plays the Queen forces them to perform, Magnolia also realises her feelings for Sebastian haven’t gone away and, after all these years, the two friends take their relationship to the next level.

The two new lovers finally convince the Feary Queen to grant their wish to leave, but in return she wants the Gemerald Eye, the object that gives Magnolia the powers of the Emerald Gem-Herald. Will Magnolia surrender the Eye in order to secure their freedom? And what does this mean for her future with Mr Grieve since, if she does, she’ll be back to being mortal Magnolia Maguire again?

Peter Hate pretends to rescue Sebastian and Magnolia from Whether, but this is a ruse for he is now working with Lord Bram. Lord Polyps plans to transfer Nimrod’s still-living brain into Sebastian’s body! Can Ferek and Stumpy, with help from Mrs Dribblebottom, stop Lord Polyps? How will Merry be the one to save them? She’s a baby…or is she? What will Hate himself do when he returns unexpectedly? How can Derek and Dr Goode survive the doom the Regime have in store for them? And don’t forget that Tater is trapped in Roberts of Galbraith. Tater’s paralysis has been healed but he has learned the hospital’s secrets, and those secrets, that are shockingly linked to Regime Head Jaikay Ellem, will change everything.

The last chapter of The Children of Hate will set the scene for the final trilogy of the series, revealing a shocking twist that will change the world of Sebastian Grieve forever!


The TENTH book in The Sebastian Grieve Series

The Lies and Consequences Trilogy - Book One

Sebastian Grieve, the descendant of both Merlin and Dracula, is still reeling from the revelation concerning the Regime Of Witches, Lycanthropes, Idyllists, Nosferata, and Ghouls. It was Tater who learned the truth, that the Regime, has behind everything bad that has happened to Sebastian in the past few years—his troubles at Warthog’s, Nigel Canus, the Cult of Calamity, Hate learning that Nimrod died in the Tournament of Hate, and manipulating Lord Bram Polyps to continue his campaign against Sebastian.

Sebastian demands answers from his friend and Head of the Regime Jaikay Ellem. At first Jaikay denies the charges but finally she reveals that she is, in fact, the mastermind behind ALL of the Regime’s actions and she is about to put in place her final scheme. Sebastian demands to know what that is but she slyly tells him all will be revealed in time before disappearing along with the entire Regime.

Sebastian had long blamed his “uncle” Lord Bram, actually his forebear Dracula, for all his troubles but with this new information he wonders if there is hope for them yet. He would bury the hatchet with him but Lord Bram would still rather bury it in Sebastian’s back!

Having surrendered the Gemerald Eye in the previous book, Magnolia is back to being ordinary. She’s also back to being in love with Derek. Or is it Derek’s simulacrum Ferek she loves? Will any triangle in this series ever end happily?

Well, yes. The Widow Dribblebottom/Stumpy/King Arthur triangle is resolved with all three realising they work as a throuple. It’s the worst time possible for them to depart but the trio want a quieter life and they leave for Stumpy’s ancestral home underneath the South Pole.

Sebastian wishes he could focus on the mystery of the Regime but he and his friends need to focus on their detective business Sleuths Inc—someone has to pay the bills! Fortunately there is a wealth of work, in fact there’s too much for the group to handle. Just as well animated statue Stonewall Washington decides to move in next door to 247 Bougainvillea Lane and help out. But what is Stonewall’s true reason for coming to Birmingham? It involves Sebastian’s other neighbour, Dr Goode—the two met during The Tournament of Hate—but how?

Sleuths Inc have one major case, an infinite room in a seemingly ordinary house in Florence, Italy. The room swallows the entire cast and begins to expand. If Sebastian, Magnolia, Derek, and Ferek can’t solve the mystery of the room it will eventually absorb the city and, indeed, the whole world.

Meanwhile, while Bougainvillea Lane is empty, the Regime decides to strike and take the house and all its power and secrets. But first they will need to get through the house’s deadly gardens and past groundskeeper Tater, who was tortured by the Regime in an attempt to convert him to their side. Tater is assisted by Stonewall and Dr Goode. And even if the Regime does enter the house, this magical mansion is perfectly capable of handling a home invasion.

It’s no surprise when Sebastian learns that it is Lord Bram behind the infinite room. But, in a turnabout, Lord Bram turns out to be the room’s power source, a pawn being used by a new threat, the not-evil-but-still-must-be-dealt-with Lady of the Lock and her cat companion Smitten. Lady Lock is using Bram to power the room and if the room absorbs him completely it will expand infinitely, destroying everything. Sebastian has a choice, kill Lord Bram or sacrifice himself to save him. Displaying all the selflessness we’ve come to expect of him, Sebastian saves Lord Bram who, in turn, saves Sebastian from death.

Lord Bram finally realises it is he, and he alone, who is responsible for his son Nimrod’s death. In an unimaginable conclusion, Lord Bram and Sebastian unite to stop the room from destroying the world. The Lord also ceases the pretense of his adopted persona. Lord Bram is gone. Long live Lord Dracula.

Who will Magnolia choose? Derek? Ferek? Or someone else? What will Dr Goode do when he learns that Stonewall Washington is there because he loves him? Has Lord Dracula truly changed? 

Hopefully he has because Bougainvillea Lane is about to reveal a secret, a secret that King Arthur has been keeping from everyone this whole time. It concerns Lord Dracula and it will either cement his new alliance with Sebastian or drive the two apart forever.