It’s Here! It’s Queer! It’s all smoke and mirrors, I fear!

Step right this way, step inside, and see the greatest show ever to amaze your senses and baffle your mind. Watch! As a budding friendship is slowly but completely transformed before your very eyes! Marvel! At how stupid four very intelligent young people can actually be when confronted with life’s mysteries! Gasp! With indignation at the skullduggery and bad manners brought in the pursuits of love, fame, wealth, and let’s be honest, a lot more wealth. Blush! At some of the language! Laugh! Primarily at some of those waistcoats! Tremble! At the revelation of worlds beyond worlds and compacts most rare and Faustian!

Buy! This! Book!

Buy it:

On Amazon Kindle (US | UK), on Lulu (print | eBook), on iBooks, on Nook, on Kobo…

What’s it about? What’s it about? You’ve heard all this and you still need to know more? Allow me:

The year is 1900. An Earl, an engineer, a suburban philosopher, and an enigma meet at University and make a pact to learn the art of conjuring.

But nothing among the friends is quite as it seems, and soon the happy four are plunged into worlds of political activism, crime, despair, sordid trysts, and a Faustian compact which seems set to threaten their very lives, one by one…


It’s Here. It’s too late to run. The Next Big One is upon us.

It’s here.

By which I mean you can buy the book.

You can buy it as a paperback from

You can buy it straight to your Kindle from Amazon US | UK.

You can buy it in a number of ebook formats from a number of epublishing sites, by searching “The Next Big One Derek Des Anges”.

And you should buy it, because god knows where you’re going to find another epidemic thriller with an anxious bisexual hero and the world’s least flappable trans woman scientist in a major starring role. You’re certainly not going to see much in the way of critique of media reporting of disease, and you won’t get much debate. This book is not The Hot Zone. I promise you that much.

With the number of UK cases hitting a hundred, it’s clear that KBV is a problem which isn’t going away. Downing Street have released the following statement: “The total number of KBV cases in the UK is still comparatively small, and we are confident that the disease can be contained. NHS leaflets advising on lifestyle and behaviour changes which can help protect against infection will be available soon. We ask the public to remain calm and to continue to behave responsibly about their health in all areas.

Vocational journalism student Ben Martin is the last person who ought to be investigating a major viral outbreak. He doesn’t know a single damn thing about biology; he pays his rent by DJing for hipsters. He’s nervous, easily-discouraged, and not over his ex.

But it’s him who ends up with the assignment, and it’s him who ends up facing down the truth: there is more to this than meets the eye.

Book Launch: Brown Bread Boys, A Tragedy

The time has come to let this particular manuscript into the wild! I’m very fond of this one (I’m fond of all my books, but don’t tell anyone – I hear that kind of thing comes off as arrogance in the wrong circles), and it was pretty much incredibly good fun to write from start to finish.

Hopefully it’ll be good fun to read from start to finish, too: a contemporary take on Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar without the politics but with a chilling, ancient blood magic and feuding London gangs, replete with a diverse cast of characters and familiar places.

Cover photo by J Reilly

The King is dead: long live the King. Or so the echoes suggest. But Craig Williamson has barely murdered his way to total dominance of his London crime family when already his lieutenants are plotting against him: not greedy, just concerned. Or so they say.

One thing is for sure: whoever wins, it’s bad news for the police, who still don’t know how to prosecute or even properly investigate the gruesome, ancient blood magic used by the gun…

…even the gang themselves don’t fully understand it.

Brown Bread, Boys is available to buy in print from Amazon or Lulu, as a variety of eBook formats from Lulu (and a few other places), and as a Kindle .mobi from Amazon (UK | US) – there’s almost no end of ways you can pick up and devour this story. Except by literally picking it up and eating it, because that is a bad way to read a book.

Other books I’ve written are listed here.

Book Release: Year of the Ghost and the Mortuary Remains

Despite the sound of this title, it’s not actually the story of a quirky goth band’s rise and fall, but in fact a collection of poetry covering the period of 2011-2012, with subjects ranging from the life cycle of the universe to the pestilence of London’s history, from love to death, from profound sadness to cosmic joy (often over the course of one poem).

Click on the cover to purchase the print version

There is not only a print edition, but also a very affordable Kindle edition, available in the U.S. and U.K. and a variety of local Amazon sites.

Book Release/Art Post: Sketchbook

In a possibly damning indictment of how I choose to spend my time, I’ve discovered that my line drawings and warm-up sketches, done while avoiding work, have mounted up to the point where I can shove them all into a little sketchbook thing and make them available more cheaply (alas also at correspondingly lower print quality) than the individual finished images on Redbubble.

Click for sales page

The majority of sketches in this book have appeared on this blog, and can still be viewed by checking the category “content: artwork” (in the sidebar).

In the grand scheme of entertaining myself at the moment I am doing well: thoroughly enjoyed the first two episodes of Hannibal with Hugh Dancy, Laurence Fishburne, and Mads Mikkelsen, and am looking forwards to more. From what I’ve seen online opinion is split. I wouldn’t call it a revolutionary and fresh approach to television, but I’ve grown so jaded with scripted TV dramas that I am frankly just pleased the dialogue and characterisation don’t immediately make me want to punch a hole in the screen and forswear the experience of owning eyes.

In the field of written media I’m taking a break from my relentless consumption of every single Cadfael book ever published in order to finish reading G W Dahlquist’s Glass Books trilogy, ploughing through The Chemickal Marriage with the same urgency that took me through the first two in short order. I hope to write about the trilogy in more depth when I’ve finished the final part.

Book Release: Science Poems

In the wake of the very talented Chrissy Williams releasing Flying Into the Bear, a manageable volume of poetry which now sits eagerly on my Amazon wishlist thanks to the magic of the Universal Wishlist button and  Chrome, it occurred to me that a small and simple collection of poetry at an affordable price might be what people need to get them enthused. The other option is that I’d have to be as good as Chrissy Williams, and we know that’s not going to happen overnight!

To this end I’ve collected up four little books of diminutive length and negligible cost and arranged them around different themes based on their content, and the first of them, a compendium of poems about [science], is now available from – and only from – as a taster or introduction to my work. You can, of course, also go through the content: poetry category on this blog both for my poems and for my inepty attempts to analyse other people’s, if you are so minded, but buying this little thing will allow you to turn off the internet and have a moment’s peace with some poetry, and I find that’s the best way to enjoy poems.

Available from


If anyone is at all curious, the cover of this modest collection of verse is a photograph of a fence near Highgate, taken in the depths of autumn back when I was working on a project called Postcards from an Explosion. There are also explosions contained within this book, which is to do with the miracle of poetry: one can put a great deal into a very small space, because words are actually magic.

(I’ve also recently bought the eBook version of I Will Kill You With My Bare Hands by Jessica Hayworth, which was one of the most sensible investments I’ve made in a while. 219 pages of being berated with sometimes frightening and sometimes passionate intensity by a disembodied voice in a hole was apparently just what I needed).

New Year, New Offer

I’m not sure it’s really an “offer” so much as a “permanent price drop”, but: as of now, all the Kindle versions of books I’ve put out (with the exception of the charity anthology) are now $1.99 or less.

In keeping with this, the eBooks on the site (PDFs) have been dropped to a maximum of £1.45, which depending on fluctuations on the exchange rate may or may not be the same price. Amazon insists that everything is index-linked to the US dollar, while Lulu allows me to set prices originally in GB sterling. Confusing!

Unfortunately due to the costs of print-on-demand publishing I can’t lower the price on the print books, but you will get the warm glow of knowing you have a big hunk of dead tree in your hands which can’t be arbitrarily deleted from your eReader (as a Kindle owner-and-user I am more than a little wary of the tendency of said eReaders to go bananas and suddenly decide I can’t read books that I’ve paid for: as a consequence of this there is NO DIGITAL RIGHTS MANAGEMENT applied to the things I’ve published where that’s an option). You’ll also get the fuzzy feeling of me getting slightly more of my own royalties!

… We will pretend that constitutes a reward. But! Some of my books are very heavy so if you don’t like them you can put them in a bag and use them to knock out burglars.

If you’ve already read basically everything I’ve ever published ever, my mate Lee “Budgie” Barnett has his 12 Days of Fast Fiction available FREE in .ePub and .mobi formats, and m’colleague Melanie Clegg as ever has her fabulous historical novels at a very affordable price.

Kindle | Lulu

(Cross your fingers that my next post is something more interesting than throwing a tantrum about how annoying writing plot outlines is).