guide to reading wilbur smiths series

A Guide to Reading Wilbur Smith’s Series

Wilbur Smith is a best-selling author with four series of wonderful novels.  He was born in Kabwe, Zambia in 1933 and went to university in South Africa.  His novels span centuries and follow different people and families on the African continent.  He has also written a number of stand alone novels so don’t miss out on those.

The Courtney Series

The Courtney Novels are a series of thirteen novels published between 1964 and 2009. They chronicle the lives of the Courtney family, from the 1860s through until 1987. The novels can be split into three parts; the original trilogy of novels follow the twins Sean and Garrick Courtney from the 1860s until 1925. The second part is five books which follows Centaine de Thiry Courtney, her sons and grandchildren between 1917 and 1987. The third part, the most recently written, follows the Courtney family from the 1660s through until 1918, focusing on successive generations of the family. (wikipedia)  This is the suggested reading order based on time period covered not publication date.

  1. Birds of Prey 1660s
  2. Monsoon 1690s
  3. Blue Horizon 1730s
  4. When the Lion Feeds 1860s-1890s
  5. Triumph of the Sun 1880s
  6. The Sound of Thunder 1899-1906
  7. Assegai 1906-1918
  8. The Burning Shore 1917-1920
  9. A Sparrow Falls 1918-1925
  10. Power of the Sword 1931-1948
  11. Rage 1950s and 1960s
  12. Golden Fox 1969-1979
  13. A Time To Die 1987

The Ballantyne Series

The Ballantyne Novels are a series of four novels published between 1980 and 1984. They chronicle the lives of the Ballantyne family, from the 1860s through until 1980’s. against a background of the history of Rhodesia (now Zimbabwe). A fifth novel published in 2005 seeks to combine the Ballantyne narrative with that of Smith’s other family saga, The Courtney Novels. (wikipedia)

  1. A Falcon Flies 1860
  2. Men of Men 1870s-1890s
  3. The Angels Weep 1st part 1890s, 2nd part 1977
  4. The Leopard Hunts in Darkness 1980s
  5. The Triumph of the Sun 1884

The Egyptian Series

A historical fiction series of four novels published between 19993 and 2007 based in a large part on Pharaoh Memnon’s time along with his story and that of his mother Lostris through the eyes of his mother’s slave Taita mixing in elements of the Hyksos’ domination and eventual overthrow.

  1. River God (1993)
  2. The Seventh Scroll (1995)
  3. Warlock (1995)
  4. The Quest (2007)
  5. Desert God (2014)

The Hector Cross Series

A series following the adventures of Hector Cross of Cross Bow Security.

  1. Those in Peril (2011)
  2. Vicious Circle (2013)



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Verity M

WRITER #Reading #Photography #Creativity #LifeDesign blogging on Lilolia. Van Gogh: "It is good to love many things, for therein lies strength..."

6 thoughts on “A Guide to Reading Wilbur Smith’s Series”

  1. Interesting. I never knew he was from Africa and that he wrote so much. The Egyptian series sounds very good. Have you read those books?

    1. I haven’t read the Egyptian series yet but everyone speaks very highly of it including my dad who’s a huge fan of his early works. It’s definitely on my TBR.

    1. Funnily enough the same goes for me. My dad loved him and had many of his books but I just never picked one up although I have always intended to…this may well be why I consider my TBR a lifelong endeavour rather than a short term list. I will get to them all eventually! ; )

  2. I’ve never read any of Wilbur Smith’s series — but one of his stand-alones, Eagle in the Sky, is one of my all-time favorites. I remember thinking it was so swoony and romantic and tragic when I read it way back when. I wonder if it would hold up if I read it again??

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