Longtime Western fans and Amazon Kindle best-selling Western writers Mike Stotter and Ben Bridges have finally realized a long-held dream to bring back into 'e-print' some of the most popular and best-loved Western and action-adventure series fiction of the last forty years.
Series fiction, the most popular genre was always the Western, but it also encompassed war stories, tales of pillaging Vikings, life in the Roman arena and action-adventure set in the far-flung future, was at its most popular throughout the 1970s and 80s and is still fondly remembered and avidly collected by die-hard fans. Some books are now so hard to come by that it's not unusual for them to change hands for astronomical amounts.
"We got to know a number of the authors when we were teenagers," remembers Mike. "Although they mostly wrote Westerns, they often joked that they had never been further west than Piccadilly, in London's West End."
"It seemed such an obvious idea, to bring these books back in a new format for a predominantly new audience," says Ben Bridges, a.k.a. David Whitehead. "For years I had been scouring second-hand bookshops to rebuild my original collection, and everywhere I went I got the same response. 'If I could get my hands on Westerns, I could sell them. But you just can't get them anymore.'"
"It seemed like a ridiculous situation," adds Mike. "I have constantly heard that the Western genre is dead. Yet, through sales, I know we have a large Western readership out there and no-one is catering for them. So I suggested to Dave that maybe he and I ought to do something about it--and now here we are."
Thus Piccadilly Publishing was born. One of its aims is to bring back titles for new and old readers alike. Great care is taken over the production of each title, and each one has a specially-commissioned cover from Westworld Designs that recreates the feel of the originals, at the same time giving them a fresh and more modern look.
The first Piccadilly Publishing eBook--Trackdown, by Neil Hunter--is now available for download from Amazon's platforms in the UK, US, Spain, France, Germany and Italy, and more titles are set to follow over the next several months. There are plans to expand their availability on other electronic platforms.
"We're adding authors and series to our catalogue almost every day," reports Whitehead. "Over the next year or so I think we'll surprise and delight our fellow fans with what we have to offer."