The Author Peter Maughan 

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Awesome Indies.

Peter Maughan features on the list of Critically Acclaimed Independent Authors compiled by the leading book evaluation blog, Awesome Indies. The eBook versions of the novels on this list have been evaluated by industry professionals against specific criteria for quality fiction and deemed to be of the same quality of craftsmanship as those published by mainstream publishing houses. The author is also a recipient of the AI's Gold Seal of Excellence.


An ex-actor, fringe-theatre director and scriptwriter, Peter Maughan is married and lives in the Welsh Marches, the borderland between England and Wales and the backdrop to the Batch Magna series.  The books  feature converted paddle steamers on the fictional River Cluny, and the author is a former houseboat dweller himself, living in the mid-1970s (the time frame for the novels) on a converted Thames sailing barge among a small bohemian colony of houseboats on the Medway, deep in the green shades of rural Kent. An idyllic time, heedless days of freedom in that  other world of the river which inspired the novels, set in a place  called Batch Magna. 

PS Kingswear Castle, seen here plying the River Medway, is the last coal-fired paddle steamer in Britain. A vintage lady (1924) with trim lines and a saucy bustle, she carries her years becomingly and with spirit.  She is skippered by the admirable Captain John Megoran and is the inspiration for the fourth novel  in the Batch Magna series Clouds in a Summer Sky.

The otter, which features on the Strange family coat of arms (the Batch Magna novels) and for the houseboat dwellers on Batch Magna's river, the Cluny, comes to have a magical significance, is happily on the increase in the rivers of England and Wales. Given full legal protection since 1978, when otter hunting was banned, they were then almost wiped out by harmful farming chemicals - now also banned - polluting the rivers and habitat.  We came near to losing a species from our world in which the mother, as if holding hands, links paws with her cubs. 

England and Wales, two halves of the same place that is Batch Magna.