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Wilbur Smith Books In Order

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Publication Order of Courtney Books

When the Lion Feeds (1964)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Sound of Thunder / The Roar of Thunder (1966)Description / Buy at Amazon
A Sparrow Falls (1977)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Burning Shore (1985)Description / Buy at Amazon
Power of the Sword (1986)Description / Buy at Amazon
Rage (1987)Description / Buy at Amazon
A Time to Die (1989)Description / Buy at Amazon
Golden Fox (1990)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Triumph of the Sun (1992)Description / Buy at Amazon
Birds of Prey (1997)Description / Buy at Amazon
Monsoon (1999)Description / Buy at Amazon
Blue Horizon (2003)Description / Buy at Amazon
Assegai (2009)Description / Buy at Amazon
Golden Lion (With: Giles Kristian) (2015)Description / Buy at Amazon
War Cry (With: David Churchill) (2017)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Tiger's Prey (With: Tom Harper) (2017)Description / Buy at Amazon
Courtney's War (With: David Churchill) (2018)Description / Buy at Amazon
King of Kings (2019)Description / Buy at Amazon
Ghost Fire (With: Tom Harper) (2019)Description / Buy at Amazon
Legacy of War (With: David Churchill) (2021)Description / Buy at Amazon
Storm Tide (With: Tom Harper) (2022)Description / Buy at Amazon
Nemesis (With: Tom Harper) (2023)Description / Buy at Amazon
Warrior King (With: Tom Harper) (2024)Description / Buy at Amazon

Chronological Order of Courtney Books

Birds of Prey(1997)Description / Buy at Amazon
Golden Lion (With: Giles Kristian)(2015)Description / Buy at Amazon
Monsoon(1999)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Tiger's Prey (With: Tom Harper)(2017)Description / Buy at Amazon
Blue Horizon(2003)Description / Buy at Amazon
Ghost Fire (With: Tom Harper)(2019)Description / Buy at Amazon
Storm Tide (With: Tom Harper)(2022)Description / Buy at Amazon
Nemesis (With: Tom Harper)(2023)Description / Buy at Amazon
Warrior King (With: Tom Harper)(2024)Description / Buy at Amazon
When the Lion Feeds(1964)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Triumph of the Sun(1992)Description / Buy at Amazon
King of Kings(2019)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Sound of Thunder / The Roar of Thunder(1966)Description / Buy at Amazon
Assegai(2009)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Burning Shore(1985)Description / Buy at Amazon
A Sparrow Falls(1977)Description / Buy at Amazon
War Cry (With: David Churchill)(2017)Description / Buy at Amazon
Courtney's War (With: David Churchill)(2018)Description / Buy at Amazon
Power of the Sword(1986)Description / Buy at Amazon
Legacy of War (With: David Churchill)(2021)Description / Buy at Amazon
Rage(1987)Description / Buy at Amazon
Golden Fox(1990)Description / Buy at Amazon
A Time to Die(1989)Description / Buy at Amazon

Publication Order of Jack Courtney Books

Publication Order of Ballantyne Books

A Falcon Flies / Flight of the Falcon (1980)Description / Buy at Amazon
Men of Men (1981)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Angels Weep (1982)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Leopard Hunts in Darkness (1984)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Triumph of the Sun (1992)Description / Buy at Amazon
King of Kings (2019)Description / Buy at Amazon
Call of the Raven (With: Corban Addison) (2020)Description / Buy at Amazon
Fire on the Horizon (2024)Description / Buy at Amazon

Chronological Order of Ballantyne Books

Call of the Raven (With: Corban Addison)(2020)Description / Buy at Amazon
A Falcon Flies / Flight of the Falcon(1980)Description / Buy at Amazon
Men of Men(1981)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Triumph of the Sun(1992)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Triumph of the Sun(1992)Description / Buy at Amazon
King of Kings(2019)Description / Buy at Amazon
King of Kings(2019)Description / Buy at Amazon
Fire on the Horizon(2024)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Angels Weep(1982)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Leopard Hunts in Darkness(1984)Description / Buy at Amazon

Publication Order of Ancient Egypt Books

River God (1994)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Seventh Scroll (1995)Description / Buy at Amazon
Warlock (1995)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Quest (2007)Description / Buy at Amazon
Desert God (2014)Description / Buy at Amazon
Pharaoh (2016)Description / Buy at Amazon
The New Kingdom (With: Mark Chadbourn) (2021)Description / Buy at Amazon
Titans of War (With: Mark Chadbourn) (2022)Description / Buy at Amazon
Testament (With: Mark Chadbourn) (2023)Description / Buy at Amazon

Chronological Order of Ancient Egypt Books

The New Kingdom (With: Mark Chadbourn)(2021)Description / Buy at Amazon
Titans of War (With: Mark Chadbourn)(2022)Description / Buy at Amazon
River God(1994)Description / Buy at Amazon
Desert God(2014)Description / Buy at Amazon
Pharaoh(2016)Description / Buy at Amazon
Warlock(1995)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Quest(2007)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Seventh Scroll(1995)Description / Buy at Amazon
Testament (With: Mark Chadbourn)(2023)Description / Buy at Amazon

Publication Order of Hector Cross Books

Those in Peril (2011)Description / Buy at Amazon
Vicious Circle (2013)Description / Buy at Amazon
Predator (With: Tom Cain) (2016)Description / Buy at Amazon

Publication Order of Standalone Novels

The Dark of the Sun / The Train from Katanga (1965)Description / Buy at Amazon
Shout at the Devil (1968)Description / Buy at Amazon
Gold Mine (1970)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Diamond Hunters (1971)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Sunbird (1972)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Eye of the Tiger (1974)Description / Buy at Amazon
Cry Wolf (1976)Description / Buy at Amazon
Hungry as the Sea (1978)Description / Buy at Amazon
Wild Justice / The Delta Decision (1979)Description / Buy at Amazon
Eagle in the Sky (1980)Description / Buy at Amazon
Elephant Song (1991)Description / Buy at Amazon

Publication Order of Non-Fiction Books

On Leopard Rock (2018)Description / Buy at Amazon

Wilbur Smith Biography:

Son of Herbert and Elfreda Lawrence James Smith, Wilbur Addison Smith was born in Broken Hill, Zambia, on the 9th of January 1933. He sadly passed on November 13th, 2021.

The young Wilbur graduated in Commercial Sciences in 1954 at the Natal and Rhodes University. Once he graduated, he joined the Goodyear Tires and Rubber Co. of Port Elisabeth, where he worked from 1954 until 1958. He then became a member of the H. J. Smith and Son Ltd. of Salisbury (Zambia) and worked for the company until 1963.

In 1964 he began collaborating with Salisbury Inland Revenue. During the same year he also published his very first novel entitled ” When The Lion Feeds”. The book itself and the energies he spent during the writing process convinced the author to become a full time writer. His novels are set in Africa, the continent where the author was born and also the place he loved the most, and their plots usually have a political flavor. As a matter of fact, his dream was to be a journalist to explore social and political issues related to South Africa. His father, however, pushed him to find a ” real job “, forcing him to study in order to become a business expert.

His Writings

His novels are divided into different groups, which he called series: the Courteney series, the Ballantyne series and the Egyptians series. While his career was evolving, he also got married (throughout his life he will marry 4 women), and his third wife, Danielle Antoinette Thomas with whom he married in 1971, became one of his greatest sources of inspiration. The woman, however, died on the 29th of December 1999 after a long illness. As he lost her he also lost an important muse.

The first steps of Wilbur Smith’s career as a writer are very difficult. The first twenty (20) publishers who review his work, in fact, reject him. This rejection, however, became a positive element for the artistic development of the author: in fact, he decides to focus first and foremost on what he loves, the fantastic African landscapes, the people who lived there, the African history and the wild flora and fauna of the continent.

From this new focus came the first published novel, “When-The-Lion-Feeds”, the first book of the Courteney series. It was, however, the meeting with Danielle that really pushed him towards the second phase of his professional blossoming. Thanks to her, the love scenes in his novels acquired a peculiar grace and the characters suddenly became more refined and credible. The complicity of the couple is also manifested in the dedications: every book Wilbur writes is dedicated to his wife. It is also said that he decided to begin a new book on every wedding anniversary.

His Success

Over the course of his career, the writer has sold over 80 million copies, and his novels have been translated into countless languages. The ingredients of its success are: precious materials, indigenous elements, wild animals, sweet and beautiful girls, young men, strong and determined, courageous women, death, blood, love, anger and betrayal – a mix of strong emotions. The places he describes are evocative, strong and wild, and the situations are often unexpected and shocking.

As a child, Wilbur Smith loved reading C.S. Forester, John Buchan and H. Rider Haggard. He also wildly admired Lawrence Durrell, Ernest Hemingway, John Steinbeck and Robert Graves, and, in some way, the influence of these great artists is extremely clear in his books. Undoubtedly, however, the level that the adventure genre has reached thanks to the intricate plots and the pace of Wilbur Smith’s writings is his own, personal achievement.

He is truly a unique writer. Wilbur Smith currently lives in England, despite having always stated that he fells African and that Africa has always been his main inspiration. To be completely fair, he has never failed to express his concern about the struggles the nature and the people of his native-continent face everyday. Africa is always in his heart.

His Books

When-The-Lion-Feeds is the first adventure book published by Wilbur Smith. It tells the story of two brothers, Sean and Garrick Courtney, who meet a large antelope on their way back home. They decide to hunt it, using their father’s gun, but in an attempt to hit the animal, Sean shoots Garrick, who loses a leg. From that moment Sean becomes the protector of his brother. After leaving school, both brothers begin working as ranchers and Sean falls in love with Anna, a beautiful and sweet young woman.

Meanwhile, the Zulu and the white ranchers begin to fight, and the resulting war proves to be a massacre for the white people, numerically overwhelmed. Sean takes part in the war, he miraculously survives and he decides to hide until he can run back home. Meanwhile, however, Anna, pregnant with Sean, believes her lover died and marries Garrick … The Sound of Thunder, published in 1966, is the continuation of the story of Sean Courtney.

This time, the man decides to go hunting elephants with his child, but when he comes back he finds himself in the middle of the war between the British and the Boers. He decides to join the battle to save those he loves and his beloved Africa.

Wilbur Smith and the Big Screen

Various books of the well-known African writer became movies. The first one among them was The Dark of the Sun, originally published in the year 1965, which became the film The Mercenaries in 1968. Then it was the turn of Shout at the Devil, who appeared on the big screen with the same title of the literary work in the year 1976. Lee Marvin, Roger Moore and Barbara Parkins were the stars of the movie.

Gold Mine, published in the year 1970, became Gold and was released in the year 1974. Once again, Roger Moore was the artist chosen to play the protagonist. Finally, the most recent adaptations: River God (published in the year 1993) and The Seventh-Scroll (published in the year 1995) were converted into a mini series titled The Seventh Scroll, which was released in 1999. Jeff Fahey, Roy Scheider and Karina Lombard were among the stars of the series.

Book Series In Order » Authors » Wilbur Smith

37 Responses to “Wilbur Smith”

  1. Judy Burge: 3 months ago

    I have been watching the WRC Kenya Safari Rally and have once again been inspired by the scenery which now I imagine I will never see sadly. I am 76. So I decided to read the Courtney series again after about 5 decades. My Nana started me on them when I was v. young. What’s with all the men and no women reading this stuff anyway? I’ve also read a few of the Egyptian series and have most of the Courtneys but have had to purchase the first 2 to read in publication order.

  2. larry Hurst: 9 months ago

    I wwas sent to the Seychelles islands for work and while there I discovered a Wilbur Smith, the lion feeds so I fell in love with his books and the Seychelles, I have read all of the books and married a Seychelloise lady, I still have the books and the wife, and love them all

  3. Kevin Tea: 1 year ago

    I’m a big fan of Wilbur Smith. I read “Birds of Prey” during lockdown while quarantining in a Hotel in Nova Scotia in 2021. Since have read one Hector Cross and 3 Standalones. Now I have 5 more standalones, 4 Egyptian series, 4 Ballantyne series and 13 Courtney Series to get through. Been buying them at second hand stores and will collect all his novels this way.

    Wilbur Smith is my favorite African writer. James Michener my favorite American writer and Ken Follett my favorite British author. I’m also a fan of Leon Uris, Herman Wouk, John LeCarre, Eric Van Lustbader and Len Deighton. At least that’s who I have on my shelf. Mostly W Smith and K Follet though. I’d love to thank these men for the great entertainment they have provided to this world of ours. May they RIP the ones that have already departed.

  4. Gary Newcomer: 1 year ago

    I have been hooked for 25 years now i’m starting to read them all over again can’t wait to get to the next one,

    • Ellis Blanch: 1 year ago

      Also hooked! Unforunately I recently lost my kindle (2000 model) and all of the books. Have since bought a new kindle but because of the age of the previous one I can’t restore any of the books so am now deciding if I go to the expense of repurchasing all books. Damn nusience. It takes so long to read all of the books I could start all over again with full enjoyment. Cry for me!!

      • Graeme: 1 year ago

        If you purchased those books off Amazon, you absolutely should be able to add them to your new Kindle. Shoot me an e-mail I can point you in the right direction.

  5. Denise Krueger: 1 year ago

    Rather sad that the next book in line after The Quest was not a continuation of the saga, but going back in time. I do hope someone takes up the mantle of the saga at that place.

  6. John Rutherford: 2 years ago

    I have all the hardback publications of Wilbur Smith and began reading them in 1978. Since then I have Ben a ardent fan. Over the last year I have been listening to Wilbur Smiths books in chronological order – the Courtney series and the Ballantine series and have just begun the Egyptian series again. Absolutely reading in chronological order has been a fantastic experience. Previously I’ve read the books in pinto atoom order as they have been written and have enjoyed them. However, reading the books ( listening on audible) in Chronological order has been wonderful I highly recommend this approach as, in my opinion, the continuity of the stories adds a huge amount to the whole experience. God bless Tom Harper for continuing the writing for Wilbur as he became less able to complete. I hope that all the stories Wilbur and Tom worked o. Before he passed get completed so we can enjoy the incredible creativity of this master of his art. God bless

  7. richmond glover: 2 years ago

    Hello, I have read every book that Wilbur Smith has written and my Father did the same before me. He passed and I am 81. My Son who is 51 and has also read every book written by Wilbur Smith but we recently experienced something we find disturbing. I recently purchased the following books,,,,The New Kingdom-copyright 2022, Storm Tide First Published in 2022 and am now reading Titans of War. My son and I have already read both Storm Tide and the New Kingdom before receiving these 3 books which we thought were brand new. I keep a log of every book I read and I know that I purchased Storm Tide in 2020 and the New Kingdom in May 2020. I just started Titans of War and I presume that its inscription that 2022 is the copyright year. DSo now, I am confused. How could I and my son have read these same 2 books prior to 2022? Can you explain this to me as it is very strange. If there is a phone number that I can call to discuss this with someone, I would gladly do so. Please give me a response as we are very disturbed over this development. Richmond Glover

    • Graeme: 2 years ago

      Unfortunately, I’m no idea how that is possible as I checked Storm Tide for example and it was 100% released in 2022.

    • Keith Giles: 2 years ago

      I have now read the entire Courtney series and soon the Ballantyne series.
      Most of these are read once books purchased by me. I may be interested in selling these fantastic books but I think only as a complete set. There will be 1 book missing. My Dads hard cover copy of Birds Of Prey which got me started after his death.

    • David Forsmark: 9 months ago

      All of the “Wilbur Smith” books written after 2010 are either merely supervised by him with an uncredited author, or actually written by someone else who is list as a Co-author. None of them comes close to a real Wilbur Smith book, and some are just plain awful. This needs to stop, but it won’t as long as the money is rolling in. As for Copyright dates, I used to travel to Canada and pick up books by my favorite British authors a year before they were available in the US. Smith was one of those. Could be something like this.

  8. Catherine Fortin: 2 years ago

    I have read all of the Egyptian series because of my
    love of Egypt. I am so sorry this great author has
    passed away. I have kept my books and will reread them. Thank you for a wonderful adventure.

  9. Lou Dorosz: 2 years ago

    Started reading his books a month ago. Now I am hooked.Most if not all of his books are available on Amazon only. Why??

  10. Chris Shand: 2 years ago

    I have read nearly all of Wilbur’s books and my favourite is The Sunbird. I now this is a wee bit late but we are all going to miss not having any more of Wilbur’s books.
    May He Rest In Peace.

  11. Arne Gilbakken: 2 years ago

    Wilbur’s books are my favorites. For a long time Lepord hunts in darkness was my favorite with all the colourful description of landscape and natural phenomena. When Blue horizon was published I got another favorite book. Beeing blind after accedent, the descriptions in Wilbur’s books create the most wonderful pictures and images in my head. Thanks for all the wonderful time I have enjoied with these fantastic books!

    Best regards

  12. Joe MajuryI started reading: 2 years ago

    I started reading Wilbur Smith when I was a young lad of 18 in 1971. I started with his first book and since then I have waited year after year for his next book to come out. Problem was that I read them all in just a day or 2, then had to wait a full year for his next one. I will miss him, but most of all I will miss being transported too far away exotic places.

  13. Alan: 3 years ago

    I have truly loved all of Wilbur’s books. I feel as though I have lost a very dear friend.

  14. Andrew: 3 years ago

    I’ve read the Courtney & Ballantine Series in publication order which I found quite difficult to follow, although enjoyed them all.
    For the first time I’m going to read The Egyptian Series in chronological order and see how it compares.
    Lockdown has had it benefits!!!
    I can honestly say that i have really enjoyed every novel but the stand out one for me is When The Lion Feeds.

  15. Robert Taylor: 3 years ago

    I have a great collection of Wilbours books quite a few are first Edition and some are Limited Edition and signed.
    Is there anywhere that there is a correct list of what order that you should read Wilbour Smith books in.
    It’s ok with the Hector Cross and the fantastic Egyptian series, but I find myself reading a book what I thought was the next book in the series only to find out that I have jumped a complete book and missed some of the action.
    Is once the Coronavirus pandemic is finished will Wilbour Smith and his Co writers be signing books again?
    Kind regards.
    Robert L Taylor

    • Graeme: 3 years ago

      Our chronological orders above should work.

      • harry dol: 3 years ago

        when I want to read the old Wilbur smith books in the correct follow-up I assume I should use publication/release dates dates but I see some dates are not in lines with your chronological order.
        Please advise ?

        • Graeme: 3 years ago

          Chronological order is the timeline within the book worlds, which conflicts with the publication dates of the books.

  16. Ian Blackmore: 3 years ago

    i have read all of your books and look forward to reading the new one when i can get one, it,s shame not more of your books have not been made into films as they are all great.
    thank you

  17. Mr A J Hicks: 4 years ago

    Thanks, great site .Cheers

  18. Mr A J Hicks: 4 years ago

    Graeme what is the best book you have read.

  19. Mr A J Hicks: 4 years ago

    Thank you for reply ref Call Of A Raven.When I start reading the Ballentyne series shortly,would you suggest, starting with that book first..

    • Graeme: 4 years ago

      That’s totally your call. I’m someone who prefers to read books in the order the author has written them. However many do prefer to read chronologically. I know with Wilbur Smith and his Courtney series most prefer to read chronologically so might be same deal with Ballentyne series.

  20. Mr A J Hicks: 4 years ago

    Is the Call Of A Raven ,a stand alone book or the Ballentyne series

    • Graeme: 4 years ago

      We’ll be getting it listed shortly however it is part of the Ballantyne series. It appears to be a prequel to the series chronologically.

  21. Norme: 4 years ago

    Can we expect anything after ‘Ghost fire‘? Which follows on Theo and Constance. Chronologically the next book to read is ‘when the lion feeds‘ which is an entirely different generation of Courtneys.

  22. Roy Ledama: 6 years ago

    I believe TIGERS PREY is supposed to be before Blue Horizon as Jim is grown in Blue Horizon.

  23. carol ward: 7 years ago

    Hi Shoshana was looking on this site for a book name for my husband when i saw your ask about Blue Horizon. I know its a few months ago but if its any help to you music magpie have a good selection of Wilbur Smith books .

  24. Van Price: 7 years ago

    This is a great site! There is a new one to add! War Cry. I believe, but have no read it yet, that it will fall either before or after “The Burning Shore”. From the teaser, it is about Leon Courtney.

  25. Alan Walker: 8 years ago

    There is another book to add. Pharaoh is a new book in the Egyptian series, I believe it fits in between Desert God and Warlock.

  26. jason raymond: 8 years ago

    I don’t agree with you chronological order of the Egyptian series. I think Desert God must come after River God. Reason being Desert God is about Bekatha and Tehuti, who are the daughters of Lostris and the aunties of Nefer Seti, the main man in Warlock?


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