James Buchan


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Agent: Caroline Dawnay
Assistant: Kat Aitken


James Buchan is a freelance writer who lives with his family in Norfolk. His novels have won major literary awards, including the Whitbread First Novel Award for A Parish of Rich Women and the Guardian Fiction Prize for Heart's Journey in Winter, and have been translated into a dozen foreign languages. His latest novel, The Gate of Air, was nominated for the 2009 Ondaatje Prize.

For any enquiries about film & television, please contact Charles Walker at United Agents.

Latest publication:

DAYS OF GOD: The Revolution in Iran and its Consequences, John Murray, 8th Nov 12
The Iranian revolution of 1979 was one of the capital events of modern times.  It inaugurated thirty years of warfare in the Middle East and introduced an Islamic radicalism that still troubles the world today. 

Drawing on a lifetime of engagement with Iran, James Buchan explains the resentments that gave rise to the Revolution, and makes intelligible its legacy of extremism in the Islamic Republic.  Using newly declassified diplomatic papers and a rich seam of Persian-language news reports, diaries, memoirs, interviews, theological tracts and film, Buchan presents the principal actors, Shah Mohammed Reza and Ayatollah Khomeini, in a clear and dispassionate light.  He dispels cherished myths in both Iran and the West about the causes of the Revolution, its bitter progress and its tragic consequences. 

Praise for James Buchan:

'A succinct, elegant book, written in an easy, conversational tone which never makes its big ideas of profound implications seem intimidating'  Sunday Telegraph

'James Buchan's elegant prose sparkles on the page' New Statesman

'Combines deft broad strokes with intricate details, shading in apparent dry subjects with innumerable and delightful anecdotes.' The Economist


Publication DetailsNotes


An exploration of a disturbed modernity and a fireside spine-chiller of Victorian vigour and conviction.



Spanning the period 1974-1997, Buchan's complex story follows John Pitt through his initial obsession with Shirin, the daughter of a general in the Imperial Air force of the Shah of Iran and, after the two elope, his discovery of the fact that his romantic ideal and reality do not match.



It is the autumn of 1987 and Jane Haddon, at the age of 30, is at the pinnacle of her career. As managing director of Associated British Textiles, she has scaled, without any evident exertion, the peak of British finance. When the stock market crashes, so does Jane's life.



A novel which combines a love story within a thriller, set in 1983, when the last battle of the Cold War is about to begin, the secret battle for the divided heart of Germany.