This is the web site for prizewinning author an publisher Brian John. Here you can find out a good deal about the author, together with much information about his published output. If you have any queries, please use the Contact form which can be reached via the Menu bar.
Brian John was born in Carmarthen in 1940 and brought up in Pembrokeshire. He is married and has two grown up sons and two grandsons. He studied at Haverfordwest Grammar School and at Jesus College Oxford, where he read Geography, had a lot of fun and obtained his D Phil degree for a pioneering study of the Ice Age in Pembrokeshire.
When he was a student he led two University expeditions, to Iceland and Greenland, and thinks it is a minor miracle that he survived. He then worked as a field scientist in Antarctica and spent eleven years as a Geography Lecturer in Durham University. He has travelled widely, mostly in cold places.
In 1977 he and his family moved to a smallholding near Newport in Pembrokeshire, and since then he has made his living as a writer and publisher. He is also actively involved in environmental and community organizations.
He has published hundreds of articles and around 80 books, and among his publishers are Collins, Pan, Orbis, Aurum Press/HMSO, Longman, David and Charles, Wiley and Edward Arnold. His published output includes university texts, walking guides, coffee table glossies, and books of popular science. Many of his titles have been published by Greencroft Books, and have been of particular interest to readers in Wales -- for example tourist guides, books of local jokes, walkers' handbooks, and titles on local folklore and traditions.
Then came the Angel Mountain Saga......... The novels have received wide acclaim for their narrative skill, their strong sense of place, and their historical authenticity. Much to Brian's surprise, the Saga has been a runaway success, and the heroine, Mistress Martha Morgan, now has a cult following of readers from all over the world. However, the sale of three titles to Transworld Publishers, and their reissue under the Corgi imprint, did not lead to a great increase in sales, and in 2008 Transworld agreed, on request, to pass the rights back to Greencroft Books. So now all translation, film rights etc are currently held by Greencroft Books.
Until 2011 Brian thought he had completed work on this fiction series, written and published at the rate of one novel per year. Mistress Martha was -- finally -- in her grave. But then, under pressure from readers, Brian agreed to write a new novel, and "Sacrifice" was the result. And then came another, called "Conspiracy of Angels" -- about which readers have been very enthusiastic. Eight novels so far. Will there be any more? The author is sworn to secrecy.......
Sales of the paperback editions of the novels are holding up well, and "On Angel Mountain" has now sold about 32,000 copies, excluding Ebook (Kindle) sales. The accumulated paperback sales figure for all the titles in the saga currently stands at about 76,000.
Another recent book (reprinted several times) is "The Bluestone Enigma", which takes a controversial look at the various theories used to explain the transport of certain bluestones from West Wales to Stonehenge.
Brian's recent children's story called "The Strange Affair of the Ethiopian Treasure Chest" has been well received, and won the 2011 Wishing Shelf Award for books aimed at the 6-8 year-old age group. That's a great accolade, since the judges were all primary school children from the appropriate age group.
In November 2012 Brian published "Ghostly Tales from Pembrokeshire" -- which became a Christmas best-seller and continues to be very popular.