Matthew Harffy: Cross and the Curse (Review)

Matthew Harffy at Gefrin

Matthew Harffy lived in Northumberland as a child and the area had a great impact on him. The rugged terrain, ruined castles and rocky coastline made it easy to imagine the past. Decades later, a documentary about Northumbria’s Golden Age sowed the kernel of an idea for a series of historical fiction novels. The first of them is the action-packed tale of vengeance and coming of age, THE SERPENT SWORD. The sequel is THE CROSS AND THE CURSE.

Matthew has worked in the IT industry, where he spent all day writing and editing, just not the words that most interested him. Prior to that he worked in Spain as an English teacher and translator. He has co-authored seven published academic articles, ranging in topic from the ecological impact of mining to the construction of a marble pipe organ.

Matthew lives in Wiltshire, England, with his wife and their two daughters.

When not writing, or spending time with his family, Matthew sings in a band called Rock Dog

Author Web site

Bernicia Chronicles

The Bernicia Chronicles is a series of action-packed historical fiction books set against the backdrop of the clash between peoples and religions in Dark Ages Britain.


Buy the book


Before The Battle of Hastings.

Before Alfred fought the Danes.

Even before England.

Warlords battled across Britain to become the first King of the English.

When Beobrand’s valour brings about a stunning victory against the native Waelisc, the King of Northumbria rewards him with riches and land. Beobrand wishes for nothing more than to settle on his new estate with his bride. But he soon finds himself beset with enemies old and new. He even fears that the power of a curse has him in its grip, as he begins to lose all he holds dear.

With treachery and death surrounding him, Beobrand confronts his foes with cold iron and bitter fury. On his quest for revenge and redemption, he grudgingly accepts the mantle of lord, leading his men into the darkest of nights and the bloodiest of battles.

Release data: 22nd January 2016


Matthew Harffy and The Cross and the Curse, what can i say? Simply its great, Matthew has the potential to match SJA Turney in the realms of Independent Publishing. The first book in the series “The Serpent Sword” was a resounding success and deservedly so.

The hard part as always for any author is the second book, having to repeat that effort and pull together the magic that makes a great novel. Matthew managed this with his dark gritty characters and explosive plot lines. For me Harffy breaks ground that Cornwell attempted with Uthred of Bebbanburg but dragged out too long and set in the middle ground of mass appeal.

Set slightly earlier than Cornwell’s series Harffy’s series contains all the grit that Uthred lacks, Matthew Harffy doesn’t try to walk the middle ground with Beobrand, instead he delivers a no holds barred book that is an immersive historic epic.

although this book is not out until the end of Jan 2016 im already highly looking forward to book 3.


Book 1 Art:

1 Comment

Filed under Historical Fiction, Matthew Harffy, Uncategorized

One response to “Matthew Harffy: Cross and the Curse (Review)

  1. Pingback: New Release: “The Cross and the Curse” by Matthew Harffy | writerchristophfischer

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