the Author

Hunter’s Redoubt, preview chapter & cover art

Posted in writing, chapters, Jody Lee, Kathleen Oudit, Hunter's Redoubt, The Burning Crown.

This book had a bit of journey. I’d written 200k words. I’d cut 110k of those words, but still believed I had 90k words. This is not what happened. What happened in the end was I had 0k of the orig­inal words I’d written — and 303k of the new words I’d started once I’d typed “the end” (which is figu­ra­tive as I don’t think I’ve ever typed that unless instructed to do so). It is the longest first book in an arc I’ve ever written. Which was not my intent.

But. Michelle. Story length. It is the story of my writing life >.<

Jody Lee did the cover art, and Kath­leen Oudit, the cover design across all four formats. This is the front cover and the ebook cover.

Hunter's Redoubt




If the second name is familiar to you, it should be — Kath­leen is my Art Director at Mira books. I had reached out to her to ask her to recom­mend a designer who could work with illus­tra­tion, as opposed to photo-compositing, which is how most covers are done these days.

She looked at the previous West novels, and then offered to be the designer, if I’d be comfort­able with that. I was deliri­ously comfort­able with that. She is comfort­able with illus­tra­tion. When I was a student at UoT, Kath­leen was a student at OCA, and we met in the book­store. Back then, illus­tra­tion covers were far, far more common.

I have let the book page go live, but it is missing infor­ma­tion that would usually be there – and I will add all of that as soon as I am certain any gener­ated links will be active.

Hunter’s Redoubt preview chap­ters are here.

18 Responses to Hunter’s Redoubt, preview chapter & cover art

  1. Marie says:

    I still have the orig­inal Hunter books. Is this writing a contin­uing of the story?there is also more chap­ters in a later book. I’m a little confused. What is this book about???

  2. Marie says:

    I’ll will try again. My comments keep disap­pearing. The ques­tion in a shorter inquiry. What is this book about?I still have the orig­inal Hunter books. Also their involve­ment in a later novel. Please explain.

  3. chibipoe says:

    Marie, this book is a contin­u­a­tion of the overall story that runs across the Hunter Duology, Sun Sword, and the House War books. The final arc, I believe, that brings the story began in Hunter’s Oath to a close.

  4. michelle says:

    @Marie: As chibipoe says down­stream, it’s the final arc in the over­ar­ching story in the Michelle West universe. The first two books, The Sacred Hunt, are the start of it; those are followed by The Sun Sword series (six books) and The House War series (8) books.

    I’m not sure I under­stand your ques­tion, though. All of the West novels take place in the same universe, with some over­lap­ping char­ac­ters. Hunter’s Redoubt is the first book in the last series, THE BURNING CROWN.

  5. Sandy says:

    I can’t wait to read it. Hope­fully it can be bought on my Nook. I spent all of last year reading the Sun Sword & The House War Series twice. This year was dedi­cated to the Cast Series. You are an awesome writer. Thank you so much for giving me so much happi­ness in your books.

  6. Terrie Pless says:

    Michelle, I absolutely loved it. I even took an Annual Leave day, so I could sit in comfort, with no inter­rup­tions and just enjoy. Thank You

  7. Pamela says:

    So excited!!! Thank you!

  8. michelle says:

    @Sandy: it should be avail­able on the Nook; there’s a link for it on the book page that works — at least on my end. I know that some people choose, for busi­ness reasons, to go all-in on kindle and kindle unlim­ited, but… I read my ebooks in iBooks. So I want the ebooks to be avail­able widely, even if most people read the books on their kindles.


    Michelle, super excited and super sad. I love this universe and your story telling. I hope one day you would consider the story of avendar. Will this book be on paper­back or hard cover?? I love buying the books so I know I will never lose them :).

  10. michelle says:

    @Jennifer: I’m sorry about the super sad =/. This book will — if I survive IngramSpark — be avail­able in trade paper­back and hard­cover. Both will be more expen­sive than regular trade paper­backs and hard­covers because they are print-on-demand, and the print-on-demand price is based on… number of pages. If the book were 400 pages, it would be in the normal price range; it’s 800+ pages =/.

    Those have yet to go live. Ebooks go live very quickly, and with very little fuss.

    Print books… don’t. I have a proof copy of the Amazon edition on the way; if the cover colors, etc., are good, I can approve that, and it will go live for ship­ment on the 30th (the pub date) but I am waiting on IngramSpark’s processing time for the hardcover/trade paper­back that can be ordered by a book­store. After which I’ll have to order proof copies to make sure the cover colors & inte­riors are actu­ally repro­duced prop­erly before I approve those for distribution.

  11. Marie says:

    The cover is beau­tiful, looking forward to the novel. Any idea when it will be in the stores? I do hope it will be written in the same style as the orig­inal. Thankyou.

  12. Deadhouse_Gates says:

    I thought this final arc was called End of Days? Why was that title changed to The Burning Crown?

  13. michelle says:

    @Deadhouse_Gates: The final arc was what I called End of Days. The series title changed because Sheila said it sounded biblical, and after not a lot of thought, I agreed. So I had to come up with another series name. After DAW cancelled the contracts for these books, I kept the new series title because the fact that DAW wasn’t going to publish them didn’t change the thought process.

  14. Andrew Halliwell says:

    So excited for this series. Will gladly pay any price for print and so stoked there a hard­cover option 

    Do you know if this series will be as long as the House Wars series?

  15. michelle says:

    @Andrew: My hope is that it will be six books. What I sold DAW was four books, but with the under­standing that it was likely to be six. My Australian alpha reader thinks it will be the same length as the House War series. 

    The one thing I have never devel­oped as a profes­sional writer is: precise under­standing of story length. I write it until it’s done, and some­times this produces tears and anxiety. But I’ve gotten a bit better over the years; SUN SWORD was supposed to be two books — THE BROKEN CROWN and THE SUN SWORD. It was not, demon­strably, a duology =/

  16. Chris Carlucci says:

    Well, as far as I am concerned, the one great advan­tage of not being published by a major publisher, is that you don’t have to limit your­self to a certain number of words. Yes, I’ll have to pay more because the book will be bigger, but most of us are in the “superfan” cate­gory and willing to do that. Of course, the disad­van­tage of not going with DAW is you don’t have access to the editors who worked with you on your other books. You may have mentioned this else­where, but how are you handling editing?

  17. Deadhouse_Gates says:

    If The Burning Crown arc does end up being the same length as the House War series, when do you antic­i­pate the final book will be released? Is there a partic­ular date/year in which you’d want to release the final book in the Essalieyan universe?

  18. michelle says:

    @Deadhouse_Gates: I can’t give a reason­able answer to that ques­tion. In order to answer remotely accu­rately, I’d have to be certain how many books there will be — and as I mentioned else­where, I thought THE SUNSWORD would be two books when I started it. I’ve gotten a bit better about esti­mating “how many books”, but not a lot.

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