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Peter Ackroyd Books In Order

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Publication Order of Ackroyd's Brief Lives Books

Publication Order of The History of England Books

Publication Order of Shakespeare: the Biography Books

Aspiring Spirit (2005)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Upstart Crow (2005)Description / Buy at Amazon
A Muse of Fire (2005)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Onlie Begetter (2005)Description / Buy at Amazon

Publication Order of Voyages Through Time Books

The Beginning (2003)Description / Buy at Amazon
Kingdom of the Dead (2004)Description / Buy at Amazon
Escape from Earth (2004)Description / Buy at Amazon
Cities of Blood (2004)Description / Buy at Amazon
Ancient Rome (2005)Description / Buy at Amazon
Ancient Greece (2005)Description / Buy at Amazon

Publication Order of Standalone Novels

The Great Fire of London (1982)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Last Testament of Oscar Wilde (1983)Description / Buy at Amazon
Hawksmoor (1985)Description / Buy at Amazon
Chatterton (1987)Description / Buy at Amazon
First Light (1989)Description / Buy at Amazon
English Music (1992)Description / Buy at Amazon
The House of Doctor Dee (1993)Description / Buy at Amazon
Dan Leno and the Limehouse Golem / The Trial of Elizabeth Cree / The Limehouse (1994)Description / Buy at Amazon
Milton in America (1996)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Plato Papers (1999)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Clerkenwell Tales (2003)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Lambs of London (2004)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Fall of Troy (2006)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Casebook of Victor Frankenstein (2008)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Canterbury Tales: A Retelling (2009)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Death of King Arthur (2010)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Mystery of Charles Dickens (2012)Description / Buy at Amazon
Three Brothers (2013)Description / Buy at Amazon
Mr. Cadmus (2020)Description / Buy at Amazon

Publication Order of Non-Fiction Books

Notes for a New Culture (1976)Description / Buy at Amazon
Dressing Up (1979)Description / Buy at Amazon
Ezra Pound and His World (1980)Description / Buy at Amazon
T.S. Eliot (1984)Description / Buy at Amazon
Dickens' London (1987)Description / Buy at Amazon
Introduction to Dickens (1991)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Life of Thomas More (1991)Description / Buy at Amazon
Blake (1995)Description / Buy at Amazon
London: A Biography (2000)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Collection (2001)Description / Buy at Amazon
Dickens: Public Life and Private Passion (2002)Description / Buy at Amazon
Albion: The Origins of the English Imagination (2002)Description / Buy at Amazon
Illustrated London (2003)Description / Buy at Amazon
A Traveller's Companion to London (With: Thomas Wright) (2004)Description / Buy at Amazon
Shakespeare: The Biography (2005)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Thames: Sacred River (2007)Description / Buy at Amazon
Venice: Pure City (2007)Description / Buy at Amazon
A Brief Guide to William Shakespeare (2010)Description / Buy at Amazon
The English Ghost (2010)Description / Buy at Amazon
London Under (2011)Description / Buy at Amazon
Queer City (2017)Description / Buy at Amazon
Colours of London (2022)Description / Buy at Amazon
The English Actor: From Medieval to Modern (2023)Description / Buy at Amazon
The English Soul (2024)Description / Buy at Amazon

Publication Order of Collections

London Lickpenny (1973)Description / Buy at Amazon
Country Life (1978)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Diversions Of Purley And Other Poems (1987)Description / Buy at Amazon

Publication Order of Anthologies

New Worlds No. 221(1996)Description / Buy at Amazon

Peter Ackroyd is an English biographer and novelist who has always been fascinated with the culture and history of the city of London.

Growing up, his mother was employed in the human resources department of an engineering organization. He never saw his father as he had abandoned the family when he was but a baby. By the time he was five years old, he was reading newspapers and wrote a play inspired by Guy Fawkes by the time he was nine.
Ackroyd went to St. Benedict’s Ealing as a boy and then proceeded to graduate with a double in English degree from Clare College, Cambridge. In 1972, he went to Yale University in the US as a Mellon Fellow.

As a twenty two year old, he wrote “Ackroyd’s Notes for New Culture” that he would publish four years later. The title was inspired by “Notes Towards the Definition of Culture” by TS Elliot that was first published in 1948.

The publishing of this work showed his tendency to creatively reexamine and explore the works of several London based authors.

The author Peter Ackroyd began his literary career writing poetry such as “Diversions Of Purley” and “London Lickpenny.” He would later on go into fiction where he would become an award winning author.

In 1987, he was shortlisted for the Booker Prize and won the James Tait Black Memorial Prize in 1998. Ackroyd then worked for four years at “The Spectator” magazine where he would rise through the ranks until he became managing editor.

“The Great Fire of London” his debut novel was first published in 1982. The novel that focused on Charles Dickens who was one of the author’s biggest inspirations was something of a rework of “Little Dorrit.” It would be this novel that would set him up for several novels that would follow.

Most of her works usually have something to do with the complex interaction between space and time and what he loves to call the spirit of place. He usually traces the changing nature of London and explores this through its artists and especially the authors.

Peter Ackroyd has always been interested in London and “London: The Biography” which is one of his most popular works is a thorough and extensive discussion of the city over the ages.

Over the years, he has produced biographies of the likes of JMW Turner, Ezra Pound, William Shakespeare, TS Elliot, Chaucer, and Charles Dickens among several others.

Between 2003 and 2005, he was the author of “Voyages Through Time,” a six title non fiction series that he wrote for young readers. This would be his first ever work meant for younger readers.

It would go on to become a critically acclaimed series which was peculiar as such readers are not known for loving history. For his work early on he got a nomination from the Royal Society of Literature.

He also produced a variety of biography and fiction works in addition to literary fiction. He also got to be a book critic, television and radio broadcaster at some point. Ackroyd was honored with the CBE award in 2003.

“Foundation” by Peter Ackroyd tells the epic history of the founding of England. In the work, the author who chronicles England and the Thames its iconic rivers takes readers from prehistory when England was nothing but primeval forests to Henry VII the first Tudor King.

He takes his readers from the construction of Stonehenge to the establishment of cathedrals and common law, which were two of the great glories of medieval England. He takes us to the most distant past of England to a medieval manor house, a Saxon tomb, a Roman fort and a Neolithic stirrup that was discovered in an ancient grave.

In rich prose, he describes the successive waves of invasions that turned England into what it is despite the invaders being Norman, French, Roman, Saxon and Viking. Ackroyd has extraordinary skills for evoking place and time and an acute eye for detail.

He recounts the foreign wars, the civil strife and warring kings. He also offers a vivid sense of how life was in England from the jokes people told, the houses they built, the food they ate and the clothes they wore.

Peter Ackroyd’s novel “Tudors” is a novel told in vivid prose and in rich atmosphere and detail. The work explores the transformation of England to a superpower from its beginnings as a settled Catholic country.

Peter tells of the cataclysmic break of England with Rome brought about by Henry VIII due to his relentless pursuit of the perfect heIr and perfect wife. He tells of how the short reign of Edward VI the teenage king resulted in the reign of Bloody Mary who violently reimposed Catholicism.

He then explores the reign of Elizabeth I which had much stability even if it was plagued by plots against the queen, civil strife and an invasion force. Above all, it is the story of the making of the Anglican Church and the English Reformation.

At the start of the sixteenth century, England was a country that was very medieval and often found direction in Rome. Ultimately, it would become a country where not the church but the state was charged with good governance and where women and men began to look for answers in themselves rather than in their rulers.

“Rebellion” by Peter Ackroyd continues what has so far been a dazzling history of England. In this work, he explores James VI the Scottish king as he heads south to become the first of the Stuart dynasty upon the death of Elizabeth I.

The Stuart dynasty was responsible for bringing together Scotland and England into one realm even if the union has always been marked by political divisions. Opinionated and shrewd, James proved an eloquent king on diverse issues that included abuse of tobacco, witchcraft and theology.

However, it was his bad attitude towards parliament that resulted in the deep divisions that almost tore the country apart during the reign of Charles I, his heir.

Ackroyd provides a warts and all but brilliant portrayal of Oliver Cromwell who would become Charles I biggest nemesis, England’s only dictator and a great military leader for parliament.

He lays out England as it was during a volatile century and also includes aspects of the social and cultural life of the period noted for its rich literature.

Book Series In Order » Authors » Peter Ackroyd

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