James Jackson - author of the Best Selling Books Pilgrim & Blood Rock
Correspondence page

I would be delighted to receive your feedback and questions.

"There is obviously alot of research behind your books - how important is strict historical accuracy to you?"

Tom (London, UK)

JJ reply: I am not attempting to create a history textbook, but I do try to get things right. It is a question of balance. On the one hand, no thriller-writer should overload the narrative with detail. On the other, it would seriously grate if glaring inaccuracies were included. Catching the tone and flavour of a period is the important thing. And, ultimately, even the writings of an academic historian or biographer are filtered through individual prejudices and preconceptions. History, like truth, is a variable!

"Pilgrim is set in the Middle Ages whereas Blood Rock is set in the Renaissance period. You have stated that your new novel will take place in the Renaissance period as well. Is there a particular era of history you feel plays to your expertise?"

Alex (London, UK)

JJ reply: The two lines I´m particularly interested in developing are Elizabethan and Crusader. They both produce what I´d call ´big sweep´ history with good set-pieces and religious/political conflict that immediately gives them tension. Character-wise, there is also enormous scope for some colourful figures: always important for a historical novel.

"Have you ever spent any time in the places mentioned in your books?"

Liam (Chichester, UK)

JJ reply: Travel, and walking the ground, is a far better way to get a feel for the subject than simply reading textbooks. It also throws light on how historians often get things wrong. If you visit a location with a specific period in mind, it´s amazing how the past can be revealed. Standing in the small chapel of Fort St. Elmo in Malta, the very place where the garrison took their last holy communion the night before they were wiped out during the Great Siege, was a privilege. You have to go on location.

James Jackson

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