Welcome to my new home! With salad, cat and giveaway

I’ve moved! The blog now lives here, along with all my other bits and pieces: free reads, link to Redbubble shop if you feel the need for a Charm of Magpies mug or suchlike, info about my editorial services, explanation of the Antikythera mechanism*, series reading order, and–drumroll–newsletter.

This will be occasional, like once a month or less: when I have book news, basically. Feel free to sign up, making your way past that new anti spam thing they do where you have to identify pictures of salad and one of the pictures is some horrific fruit-and-anchovies-in-gelatine thing from 1950 and you spend the next half hour in a state of salad definitional uncertainty.


I don’t know. Is this salad?

As a housewarming hello, I’m going to give away one e-copy of your choice of my books to each of two commenters, selected at random, to be drawn 24 June 15. Just leave your name in the comments (stick your email in the form thing so I can reach you) and say if you think that’s salad. Or nice things about the new website, or anything else you prefer. It’s Liberty Hall** round here.

*may have been dropped for reasons of space

**”This is Liberty Hall, you can spit on the mat and call the cat a bastard.” (Pictured.)


Bastard, honestly.

63 replies
  1. Carolyn
    Carolyn says:

    Lovely new digs you have. I don’t think that…thing (let’s call it a not-salad) goes well with the decor, but I suppose an aunt gave it to you as a present and would carp about its absence on her next visit. Newsletter sign-up went as those things go. I had to verify my humanity–the test for that seems like it should be a bit more rigorous given the state of the world–by choosing which photos were food. That bug picture gave me pause. I would never make judgements on someone’s dining, even if it’s not to my taste. After all, I abhor mushrooms, and I hear there’s a lot of deluded people in the world who love them. The fact that it was a two-fold test, next asking me to identify drinks, put me out a bit. Did I only average a middle grade on the food one, so they felt a retest was in order? It’s all locked down now, though. and I should be getting all the KJ Charles news I can handle. (Please note: This is why it’s best to only give me 140 characters in which to speak.)

    • KJ Charles
      KJ Charles says:

      Excellent. do let me know if anything goes hideously wrong with the process, I think we tested but technology scares me…

  2. Tiferet
    Tiferet says:

    Ooh, that’s a really nice, shiny new place you have here 🙂 *throws a pillow in the corner and sits down with Simon and Robert*
    Also, it can be a salad, I mean, it looks like something I wouldn’t touch so a salad is a possibility 😛

    • Sandra Lindsey
      Sandra Lindsey says:

      I recently had to refrain from commenting on someone’s new book cover because despite the lovely image & composition, all I could think was “arrggh they’ve used the same colour & font as Booksellers Association bags!”

  3. Jennifer
    Jennifer says:

    The new digs are lovely. I just discovered your books, which are super duper fabulous! So a virtual housewarming seems perfectly timed to me.

    That is categorically NOT a salad. That is a stepford wives concoction of boiled hoof and bone with lumpy sugar clumps that were once near a fruit tree.

    Ahem. Sorry. I have FEELINGS about jello.

  4. susana
    susana says:

    Congratulations! Your new site is great. I see I’m going to spend a lot of time here browsing and lurking…
    By the way, I’ve never seen a salad like that. Are you should it is a salad? Is it even edible? I should be very hungry to dare and taste it…

  5. Sandra Lindsey
    Sandra Lindsey says:

    Things like that “salad” always remind me of Anthony Bourdain’s Kitchen Confidential in which he revealed that chefs creating such dishes were usually on drugs, possibly a whole cocktail of them. It explains a lot, at times…

  6. Elin
    Elin says:

    Super website, there are radish roses therefore it is salad, and I believe that all cats are bastards. 🙂 Now I’m going to click everything that’s clickable and see if I can find the promised explanation. If anything doesn’t click properly I’ll give you a discreet pm. Xxx I hope you’ll be happy in your new home 🙂

  7. Colette
    Colette says:

    I’ve never understood the 50’s obsession with gelatin.

    I think I have most of your books, but maybe there is one I’ve missed somehow? Lol.

    Good luck with the new site.

  8. Robbie
    Robbie says:

    Congrats on the new digs and the new releases, need to pick them up soon… long airplane flight coming up, and I think Simon will be a good travelling companion!

    PS that’s not salad and I’m allergic to cats. Dogs rule 🙂

  9. Julie
    Julie says:

    My mother went through a horrible 1970s obsession with aspic. Two words: Beermato aspic. It involves clam juice and still gives me nightmares. None of which is the reason I woke rather late today. The actual reason being I stayed up finishing the new book. Having devoured Remnant I was looking forward to it, and let me say, it did not disappoint. Great story, excellent characters, but I was most impressed with the writing. It’s really beautiful. I was hitting highlight a lot 🙂 which isn’t that common for me in this genre. Well I can see this is just going to devolve into fangirl raving, so enough! Wonderful job, great new site!

  10. L. Anthony
    L. Anthony says:

    Yes, that is often referred to as a type of salad.

    Lol I pretty much have all your books, except the ones not pub’d yet ;-P

  11. Kim
    Kim says:

    I have to admit, staring at the link address while I waited for the page to load, I was half hoping to see a Salad Cat on the site somewhere. (Not sure if that would be more or less horrifying than the gelatin monster thing we got instead.) 😛 (There was also a moment where the links overlapped with the text some, but jiggling the window size set it to rights.) And for some reason, all I had to do to prove my humanity was confirm my email via a link and click a box saying “I am not a robot.” *glances around awkwardly*

    In other news, Remnant was fabulous! 😀

  12. Jen
    Jen says:

    SO not a salad. I grew up in the Midwest where various concoctions of jello/pudding and veggies/fruit are referred to as “salad” (see, for instance, “snicker salad”), but ew no.

  13. Liz
    Liz says:

    This is a beautiful new home! Now, that is…I mean, that’s probably a salad, but not one I would want to eat. Which is new and different for me, because salads are generally the best. Not…not this. Of course, it doesn’t hold a candle to…THIS salad right here. Which is a real thing. That existed. And people ate. Unironically.

  14. M.E. Gibbs
    M.E. Gibbs says:

    I came because somebody said cats. I stayed because those mugs are awesome.

    Also, according to wikipedia, that is totally a salad, as a salad is “a dish consisting of small pieces of food, which may be mixed with a sauce or salad dressing.” And that sure is a lot of bits, so if we count the gelatin as a ‘sauce’ we are SO meeting all the bullet points.

    Of course, so is every pasta dish EVER as well, but whatever. Pasta salad is a thing.

  15. Jen
    Jen says:

    Love the new site! Not so much that strange, green thing in the photo. Looks like an alien brain to me – definitely not salad or anything I would put in my mouth.

  16. Dianna
    Dianna says:

    I like the new website, it seems nicely laid out and not too cluttered, which is good!

    That is not salad- or if it is it’s certainly not appealing!

  17. Jo Flowers
    Jo Flowers says:

    Congratulations on this splendid new website. It will be so convenient to have all the wonderful KJC bits and pieces in one place. 

    “The Salad” worries me. It is no so much the presence of the jelly as the horrifying speculation on its flavour. Lime? Cucumber? Celery? *Shudders* It may be salad, but I’m not sure it is food!

    More congratulations on TSCOSF it was altogether marvellous. I was surprised to find I share a surname with some of the tosher characters. Did you pick the all your names up from historical records (as with Mr Sweetly)? I have to see if I have any tosher connections.

  18. Elizabeth Marshall
    Elizabeth Marshall says:

    Congratulations on your new site!
    I’d definately say that’s a salad – it’s got more than one piece of fruit/veg in it, so why not… ;D

  19. Bea
    Bea says:

    Welcome to your new home! This is the perfect opportunity to tell you how much I love your books (although I haven´t bought the last two ones – yet). I´m also enjoying your posts about writing and editing, since I have a little to do with both, so I´m looking forward to many future blogs and books.Best wishes, Bea

  20. Dreamseeker
    Dreamseeker says:

    Love the new site. I’ve definitely got some exploring to do.

    Regarding the cat, it’s what they do 🙂 We have a 5lb cat that can take up a whole queen size bed. I have decided that cats have special physical laws separate from the rest of the universe (such as cat hair existing outside of time and space – how did she put shed hair in the new sealed package…).

    As for the jello thingy, I vote to call it a salad. If I can call chocolate a vegetable, then I can call that thing something resembling a salad. Or maybe I can’t 🙂 Perhaps a table centerpiece?

  21. Vilicia
    Vilicia says:

    Congrats on this new space. Love lucien and Stephen. Maybe a little magic will find me by reading their books. I think it’s a salad but it’s odd. I wonder how they made it.

  22. Lotta
    Lotta says:

    Not a salad. I’m not sure I would even consider it edible *shudder*. But the new site – like it! Will now go click all the menues and have a poke around to see what I can discover. Fun!

  23. Vincent
    Vincent says:

    That is the oddest slab of jello I have ever seen. Even if it has vegetables, I’m pretty sure it doesn’t qualify as a salad anymore.

    This is a really great website – I like how the header shrinks when you scroll own the page. 🙂

  24. Tamika
    Tamika says:

    Happy New house warming.

    Ummm you could put it out to the guest who eats to much.

    It’s like a weird cross between a salad and jello mode.

  25. waxapplelover
    waxapplelover says:

    Like the new website! It’s clean-looking, and it’s easy to navigate. The only issue I’ve had with it so far is when I was using my iPad. The header (or whatever the block at the top is called) that doesn’t move takes up most of the screen, so the bottom part that scrolls is quite small, making it difficult to read. Other than that, I’ve enjoyed the website so far. The newsletter sign up was painless. By the way, as for the question if a jello mold is a salad, look up what ambrosia is. In the Southern US, it’s quite common to see this – a mix of canned mandarin orange segments, canned pineapple and marshmallows – at parties/barbecues and called a fruit salad.

  26. Desiree Iuzzolino
    Desiree Iuzzolino says:

    What a lovely new home! Looking forward to the fun.

    As for that…thing. ..I wouldn’t even call it food, let alone a salad.

  27. Anachronist
    Anachronist says:

    Re the salad thingy: it is green and it can be eaten even if it is encased in gelatine. Which makes it a salad-cake. By the way do you know that the word ‘salad’ is a polite way of saying ‘sex’? So if any of your daughters says:my boyfriend makes a great salad you’ll know what she really means ;p.

  28. Sarian
    Sarian says:

    That could be consider a salad since it has all that veg in it, right? Anyway, lovely website. However, I was wondering if there is any chance you would consider making the fonts in black or dark blue or something in a darker color I’ve notice the trend that a lot of blog and websites are using light grey as the new black. I really don’t understand why as it is very hard to read. I only mentioned this because not everyone has 20/20 vision, and I really appreciate your previous website where the fonts are black so it was easier to read. The light background with a light grey fonts make it hard to read because the fonts don’t stand out. Otherwise, cool website. Also, I’ve really enjoy your books. Congrats on the new pad. 😎

  29. Marieke
    Marieke says:

    Nah, that’s not a salad, it’s a scary jelly thingamajig *shudder*

    Anyway, found this through your ‘old’ blog, which was new to me and I arrived there searching for more art by Lyudmila Tsapaeva.

    I fell in love with ‘Think of England’ some time ago and am now completely floored by Simon Feximal and Robert Caldwell. Wow! I read the first Magpie novel ages ago and had the other 2 on my wishlist for a looong time. Now I have just bought them in one go – onward! (but first: Remnant. Love Whyborne and Griffin too!)

  30. Bona
    Bona says:

    Nope, that’s not my idea of a salad. I just can’t stand jelly or whatever that transparent layer is. Looks like plastic.
    Nice new place you’ve got here, BTW.

  31. Elizabeth @ Earl Grey Editing
    Elizabeth @ Earl Grey Editing says:

    I love the patterning you’ve got on the sides here. Very lovely! I am also super glad you kept the reading order on your book lists.

    Sorry to see the spam has already set in *eyes comment above*

    Speaking of spam… it might be green, but I’m pretty sure that’s not salad, no matter who says otherwise.

  32. KJ Charles
    KJ Charles says:

    Thank you for all the lovely comments. Consensus: NOT SALAD. NOT EDIBLE. NOT OF HUMAN ORIGIN.

    Winners have been picked at random and contacted, but feel free to express further horror and fear atgelatine vegetables.

  33. Natalie
    Natalie says:

    Lovely new home you have here. I have enjoyed every one of your books and look forward to what you have for us next.

    If my son were to be presented with this “salad” concoction he would make a face, try it, not like it, and then preceed to eat the entire thing. So for the sake of my son that will eat anything, let’s pretend this does not exsist.


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