Happy Release Day! ‘Insignia: Chinese Fantasy Stories’ is now live on Amazon!


Oh, happy day! I always love publishing day, when all the hard work comes together and we finally get to share our little book with the world!

I want to say a big THANK YOU to Joyce Chng and Holly Kench for contributing stories and for being awesome ladies to work with. 😀

~Kelly Matsuura~



INSIGNIA Vol.2 includes 6 Chinese fantasy stories with a mix of urban, literary, contemporary, myth-based, and historical fantasy pieces.

PART I: Young Adult / Adventure Tales

The Bones Shine Through With Light by Joyce Chng

Looking for Trouble by Joyce Chng

The Great Qilin by Kelly Matsuura


PART II: Adult / Literary Tales

The Red String of Fate by Holly Kench

Maidens of the Yangze by Kelly Matsuura

The Ghost Bride by Kelly Matsuura


Insignia: Chinese Fantasy Stories is now available from:

| Amazon US | Amazon UK | Amazon JP | Amazon AUS |


Add on Goodreads



Excerpt: ‘Restoration’ by Chris Ward


Chris Ward’s story, Restoration, is a beautiful adult literary piece; one of my favorites in the Insignia anthology.  I’ve become a big fan of Chris’ writing and believe he can write anything! He doesn’t typically write Asian or Japanese fiction, but you’ll see from this sample that he has an excellent voice for it.


Masato was changed when he returned. Fourteen years away and I could barely recognise his face through the skin withered and creased with age, but the biggest change was in his eyes. The boy of eighteen with the bright, carefree look about him had become a man hardened and dulled through years of war. I felt like no time had passed at all, but as he lay beside me that first night I felt I was clutching something hollow, something empty, a shell that if I squeezed too tight would collapse in upon itself and disappear.

Glad enough just to have my husband home at long last, even though the spinster talk barely ceased–after all, I wasn’t alone in seeing Masato as some kind of walking wraith, haunted and scarred by the far distant war that had decimated the population of our village–I still had hopes of creating some sort of real life for us. We had married young, of course, marriage forced on us by Masato’s recruitment, but I was only thirty-three and I knew of women who had given birth at a similar age. The risks were higher, of course, but risks and guarantees were two different things. I had spent sixteen lifeless years waiting for my husband to return, so risk was better than no possibility at all.

Masato refused to talk about the war at first. Old scars crisscrossed his skin like the lines on a Go board, and as I lay beside him I traced my fingers over them, fearing the stories behind each one. Masato would lie on his back with his eyes fixed on some image between us and the ceiling that only he could see, and I knew from the flushes and shivers of his skin that he was reliving those dark days over again. When I touched him on those nights it was like touching a dying animal; I could feel the residual heat in his body but the life had already gone.


Chris Ward is a native of Cornwall, England, but currently lives and works in Nagano, Japan. He is the author of The Tube Riders Trilogy, The Man Who Built the World and Head of Words, as well as numerous short stories and collections.

He spends his time snowboarding, writing, playing guitar in his rock band, Steampunk Unicorn, and generally having too much to say about just about everything.

Like Chris Ward (Fiction Writer) on Facebook for regular updates, or follow Chris’s blog at: www.amillionmilesfromanywhere.blogspot.jp


Insignia: Japanese Fantasy Stories is now available from:

Amazon US

Amazon UK

Amazon JP


Barnes & Noble


Add on Goodreads


Read More Excerpts

Megumi’s Quest by Joyce Chng

The Bakeneko by Holly Kench

Towards the Light by Aislinn Batstone

Kitsune by Heather Jensen

Sanctuary by Chris White

Moon Shadow by Kelly Matsuura