The first novel I ever read was a book called The Eagle of the Ninth, by Rosemary Sutcliff, telling the story of a young British-Roman soldier’s quest to recover the lost standard of his father’s legion, and with it his own honour. I must have been nine or ten when I first read it, and it was the start of a lifelong fascination with history and historical fiction (and it’s still a very good read today, all these years later).
It was about that time that my family made the big decision to emigrate, leaving behind our Hertfordshire home in favour of the sunny warmth of Australia. For a ten year old boy that was an incredibly exciting experience, especially since we were to travel by sea, a five-week journey that took us around the Cape of Good Hope and across the Indian Ocean. In our new home, the city of Adelaide, I and my siblings grew up and acquired an education. The University of Adelaide furnished me with a degree in history and politics (no surprise there).
Life thereafter took me into a business career that kept me busy working in the oil industry, banking, and management consulting. When the time came to retire from all that, it seemed somehow entirely natural that I should take up writing for my new vocation. And so here I am, having fun producing (I hope) the kind of historical novels that I have always loved – based firmly in fact, but exploring the mysterious gaps that the past leaves in between.
My long-term home is now in Melbourne, Australia, where I live with my partner Robert. But one of our shared passions is the joy of travel, and over the years we have journeyed extensively throughout Europe, Asia and America. Most recently we spent three whole years in Italy, which formed the background for my book Two Gents in Italy.
Below: some places I’ve had the good fortune to visit while researching my books.